December 25, 1925 – March 15, 2017
Audrey was born into a life of wealth and privilege in Vancouver but from an early age, displayed an affinity for animals, the outdoors and rural life. She far preferred spending time at a cattle ranch in the Cariboo or on her grandfather’s farm, Eaglecrest, in Qualicum, to life in the big city. She made her escape from the city when she and her sister Jocelyn enlisted in the wartime army shortly after high school graduation.
After mustering out, she studied accounting, then moved to Penticton where she met and married Frank Wittner. Over the next 12 years, the couple ran a successful business, started a manufacturing company, and welcomed five children. In 1962, Frank and Audrey bought a large cattle ranch in the Kamloops area and spent the next few years building it up. After their marriage dissolved, Audrey continued to ranch alone, establishing her purebred Hereford herd at Hidden Valley north of Kamloops. She moved her brood and her cattle to Alberta for a few years, then returned the herd to Silver Creek where, after a few more years, she retired from ranching.
Audrey then bought a business in Salmon Arm, built her own log house, studied architectural drafting, and became computer literate long before her offspring. After retiring, Audrey moved several more times, mostly to be near her peripatetic children and grandchildren. She spent her final years at Heaton Place in Armstrong, where she remained active with numerous hobbies and projects.
Audrey was an astute businesswoman, an amazing mother, a quiet, smart, fiercely independent woman and to those who knew her best, funny, compassionate, stubborn and totally unselfish. She was devoted to her family and cracked them up constantly with some of her idiosyncrasies. She was predeceased by her beloved sister Jocelyn, and survived by her children, Frances Wittner, Gail (Gord) Browning, Richard (Jocelyn) Wittner, Dianne Wittner, Marilyn Wittner (Don Violet), 9 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren.
No service at Audrey’s request. A Celebration of Life will be held later this summer. Donations in Audrey’s name can be made to Plan Canada or North Okanagan Hospice House.