Mary Lee

All I am, or hope to be.

I owe to my Mother

Abraham Lincon

It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of Mary Lee, in Vernon B.C. at the age of 86. Mary passed away the same way she lived, quietly, gently and sweetly.

Unbeknownst to many of her friends, Mary Lee was a woman of depth and breadth that her humble personality caused her to keep hidden from the world. She was born in Bristol, England where she attended Malvern School for Girls. Following her years at Malvern, Mary enrolled in the Worcester Royal Infirmary College of Nursing where she distinguished herself, graduating at the top of her class. Her primary areas of interest were Surgery and Midwifery. Mary left Nursing College with a Nursing Diploma, full certification as a Midwife and the prestigious King George Gold Medal for excellence in Surgical Nursing. In her rare, spare time she wrote a column for the London Daily News; played and won awards in tennis at the Malvern Tennis Club; was a member the girls field hockey team and played a good game of golf.

Mary graduated in June of 1942, in the thick of WW ll. As a child, a battle with Diphtheria left her with damaged heart valves which led to one of the greatest disappointments of her life – the rejection her application to wear the uniform of the British armed forces as a W.R.E.N. She was told by the WRI Hospital administration that her expertise was critically required at the hospital. They asked her to remain at WRI as a surgical nursing sister, which of course, she did. Her skills and dedication were thoroughly tested throughout the Blitz, the Battle of Britain in the London underground tubes and Dieppe to name only a few of the crises she confronted throughout the War..

During one of her rare nights off, Mary met what she described as “a tall, handsome, Canadian Air Force man” who relentlessly wooed her until she finally agreed to marry him, leave her beloved England and move to the wilds of Western Canada where she believed she would have to boil her own water and shoot gophers for dinner. Such was the depth of her love for Bill, her Canadian flyboy. This love led to a union, which lasted for almost 51 years. Only the passing of her beloved man in 1996 physically terminated it. The love and dedication never ended. We believe that she and her soul mate are finally, once again, reunited.

Apart from an incalculable number of close friends, this union also produced three sons who for their entire lives have been benefiting from and grateful for the guidance and lessons their beloved mother gave to them. Mary will be dearly missed by Larry, Michael and Roger; her Daughter’s in Law: Brenda, Barbara, Sandra and Jennifer; her grandchildren Warren, Cory, Steven, Nancy, Quinton and Geoffrey and her six great grandchildren.

All were welcome at her table.

All were welcomed as valued guests.

All will remember her with grace.

Immediate family gathered at Mary’s home on January 13th to wish Mary a safe journey and give thanks for her presence on this planet, for the positive life lessons she provided though example, and the love and generosity she provided to all that had the privilege to have know her.

Becase of you

God made this day a happy one.

Because our paths crossed on our way –

The sky is more blue. The wind is more free.

The world is better any day.

Because of you, Because of you.