It is with great sadness that we said goodbye to Surindra, my dear wife, our mum and Daadima and Naanima.
Surindra was born in the beautiful city of Kisumu, Kenya on June 6, 1932. She passed away in Victoria, BC, Canada at a the rich age of 88 years. Her father Harnam Singh Ahluwalia (son of Teja Singh Ahluwalia) and mother Manmohan Kaur Ahluwalia (born in Janki) came from Punjab, India.
Surindra was the most inspiring wife, mother, and grandmother. She leaves behind a legacy in her husband of 60 years, Nindi Sehmi, 2 children, Havind and Rasna (Bill) and three grandchildren, Sahjun, Serena and Talia.
Surindra began her schooling at the Kisumu Arya Samaj School and learned to read and write fluent Hindi, eventually speaking six languages. Later she moved with her parents to Nairobi, where she completed her high school education.
In 1950 she travelled to London, England, to join her two brothers Umarjit and Saranjit. She studied at the London School of Fashion Design where she graduated with the prestigious Honours Diploma. She later worked for a leading fashion house that designed the Queen of England’s wardrobe. She became a lead seamstress and embroiderer for some of the Queen’s dresses as well as the likes of stars such Diana Ross, Aretha Franklin, and others.
In 1954 she met Narindra (Nindi) Sehmi who was studying to be an architect. Their relationship blossomed and they decided to get married, but she wanted this to happen in Nairobi and only with her parents’ blessings. They married in Nairobi in 1960. They moved to Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, living there until 1964 when they returned to Nairobi, where their first child Havind was born. In 1965, they moved to London, England where she gave birth to Rasna her daughter in 1969.
In 1974, she threw caution to the wind and moved halfway across the world to Victoria, BC, Canada. In Victoria, she quickly established herself as part of the local Indian and Victoria communities through her passion for cooking. She taught many cooking classes at the Camosun College while also hosting many dinners at her home. Her joy for sharing her love of cooking provided many memorable moments to neighbours, friends and family.
She was blessed with a wonderfully warm nature, a natural elegance, and full of cheer and laughter. She loved everyone and was loved by everyone.
She will be dearly missed, but her spirit has spanned the world and her legacy will live on in her many friends and family.
In lieu of flowers please consider donating to the Khalsa Diwan Society of Victoria or Victoria Hospice Society.
Please check back OR click on the envelope icon on the left menu under "share/subscribe to this tribute" to receive automatic updates regarding this tribute.