Cover photo for Mimi Yin Lam's Obituary
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Mimi Yin Lam

July 9, 1948 — February 18, 2024

Mimi Yin Lam

Mimi Yin Lam passed away in her home in Lincoln, California on the afternoon of Sunday, February 18, 2024, at the age of 75. The elder of two girls, Mimi was born in Hong Kong and cherished growing up on a street filled with extended family. She loved the hours spent playing with her cousins and valued the deep bonds forged with her grandparents, aunts, and uncles. She attended St. Francis’ Canossian College, one of the most prestigious Catholic girls’ schools in Hong Kong and distinguished herself as a diligent and strong student.

Upon graduating from secondary school, Mimi forged her own path by venturing to the United States for college. She enrolled at the University of Nebraska and eventually transferred to the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, where she developed lifelong friendships and graduated in 1970 with a degree in Mathematics and Computer Science. She then began her career in Chicago, working at Kraftco and Sears. She would forever have a strong affinity for the city and proudly recounted working in the Sears Tower—at the time, the world’s tallest building—when it first opened.

In 1979, she immigrated to Canada and settled in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan where she held positions in information technology for Potash Corporation, SED Systems, and Saskatoon Health Region. She also devoted these decades to raising her only child, Terence, who was born in 1982. Grateful for her own liberal arts education, Mimi went above and beyond to expose her son to as many opportunities and experiences as she possibly could. She stayed up late to help him with homework and music practice, and she spent countless hours driving him to lessons of all sorts. Her afternoons and evenings were often spent with Terence taking in performances by the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra, trying a new restaurant, or watching his racquetball matches at the RiverRacquet Athletic Club. Even after Terence moved away for college, Mimi remained a loyal volunteer for many of the organizations Terence had been involved in, most notably the Saskatoon Music Festival, for which she was awarded the Volunteer Award in 2012.

Upon her retirement, and at the encouragement of her best friend from college, Mimi moved to Sun City Lincoln Hills, an active adult community in California in 2018. She quickly immersed herself in the social fabric of the neighborhood and forged some of her most meaningful friendships in this new environment. She loved her house in Lincoln and her garden full of lemons and roses. 

One of the greatest joys of Mimi's life came with the arrival of her grandchildren and the role of "Mimi-Mama".  She worked tirelessly to choose the right Chinese name for each baby—Jackson in 2012, Cody in 2015, and Hazel in 2019. To this day, their parents find it quite remarkable just how perfectly the names she selected match each child's personality. Mimi delighted in time spent with her grandchildren, and she was able to travel with them throughout the United States and Canada. She loved when they teased her, and their youthful observations of the world amazed her. She kept careful notes to remember her interactions with Jackson, Cody, and Hazel, and she never left home without her photo album that allowed her to share her joy with her friends and neighbors. 

Mimi will be remembered as a strong and driven woman. She will be remembered as an intrepid spirit who carved her own path through two continents and three countries. And most importantly, she will be remembered as a loving and loyal Mimi-Mama, mother, mother-in-law, sister, and friend. She will be greatly missed.

Mimi is survived by her son, Terence Li, daughter-in-law, Courtney Knowlton, and their children, Jackson, Cody, and Hazel Li, as well as by her sister, Eileen Lam. 

Services will be held on March 1, 2024 at 2:00pm at Saint Joseph Catholic Church in Lincoln, CA. The ceremony will also be video-streamed live at the following link: https://www.youtube.com/@saintjosephlincolnca1564/streams.

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Past Services

Funeral Mass

Friday, March 1, 2024

2:00 - 3:00 pm (Pacific time)

St. Joseph Catholic Church

280 Oak Tree Lane, Lincoln, CA 95648

Reception following the service in the church fellowship hall.
Service to be live streamed. https://www.youtube.com/@saintjosephlincolnca1564/streams

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