Meet London’s Madison Press

By Rob Treynor

February 8, 2014

Folks in the newsroom have known about her for a while — ever since The Madison Press went to set up a Facebook page and her face popped up.

She knew about the newspaper ever since a friend Googled her name.

When it was learned that the Toronto, Ontario native was attending a university in London, Ontario, it was decided that the coincidence merited a story in the newspaper about Madison Press.

Madison Taylor Fitzgerald Press was born to Fiona and Bryan Press almost 21 years ago in Toronto, Ontario.

She dreamed of working with the very young as an elementary school teacher, but since starting Western University three years ago, has shifted her focus to the very old. She’s majoring in sociology with a minor in thanatology (the study of death, dying, and bereavement) and plans to go into a career in elder care.

“I want to eventually work with senior citizens, hopefully in an old age home and if I won the lottery I would open my own. But that is not too realistic,” Press said.

Press loves dogs. “My dream would be to own a farm and be a dog breeder,” she said enthusiastically, citing Labrador retrievers as her preferred breed. “I love dogs and spending everyday with them would be amazing!”

The Press’ family dog of 15 years, a black lab named Molly, just passed away on Jan. 25.

“When I get my own house I want to have two dogs,” she said. She currently she shares a London house with three roommates.

“I am eighth generation Canadian with roots back to the United States,” Press said.

“In 2006, my father hired a genealogist to trace the Press name. His father had left him at an early age with little information on the background of the name.

“He discovered our family background is primarily English, Scottish and Irish with American ties,” Press said.

The farthest back the genealogist could go was to a man named William Press who was from Woodstock, Connecticut.

“William Press’s descendants seem to have settled in the United States,” Press said. “Records show they settled abroad and as close as New York state, Michigan and, in fact, Ohio — Medina County — in the early 1800s.”

Madison has never been to Ohio, but she’s visited other parts of the U.S. and abroad.

“Before high school, my family and I would go to Vermont to ski,” she said. “Personally, I prefer warm places but this was a nice place to learn how to ski.”

Press has visited Buffalo, New York and the state of Florida as well. But her favorite place she’s visited was in Europe.

“In the summer going into grade 12, I had the opportunity to go to Italy and Greece and earn an English credit — this was definitely the best summer of my life.”

Between breeding dogs and opening a nursing home facility, “I dream to one day go to Australia, England, and Hawaii,” she said.

If she ever plans to visit London, Ohio, she’ll be welcome.

Rob Treynor may be reached at (740) 852-1616, ext. 19 or via Twitter @robtreynor.