Petronille Josephine “Nell” Griffin

1922 – 2017

It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our dear Mother, Nell Griffin at the age of 95 years. Nell was born in Brussels, Belgium on March 17, 1922 to Louis and Colette Grebeude. She was predeceased by her parents and in-laws Charles, Rose and Marion Griffin of Vernon. A loving wife to her late husband, Gerald Osterman (passed in 1952) she found love again with late husband Russell Griffin (passed in 1995). She was a devoted caring mother to her daughters Ghislaine (Tony) Denbigh of Kamloops and Wendy (Mark) Grudniski of Cranbrook, loving grandmother to Jennifer (Scott) Horvath of Cranbrook, Charlie Denbigh, and MaryAnne Denbigh of Kamloops and delighted to be the great grandmother to Riley and Emmett Horvath, of Cranbrook. Nell loved having her family about her and even when they lived afar, they were only a phone call away. She was the family’s cheerleader, secret holder and trusted advisor, always having an ear for those she was so proud of. She was “Home” and she was delightful.

Nell was an avid gardener and a friend to all creatures. It was often joked that there was a neon sign above her door proclaiming, “All strays welcome!”

She enjoyed the symphony and live theatre, had a great sense of humour, and could be a bit of a dare devil, learning to fly a glider plane and whizzing about in her little car!

A devoted teacher, Nell loved to educate and encourage her students not only in her French classes but often around her dining room table. She thrived on intellectual philosophical conversation. As a humanitarian, Nell was very interested in the human condition and strove to improve the lives of others less fortunate.

Although born and schooled in Belgium, she also lived in Indonesia, the Belgian Congo, as well as England and continued with her studies in academics and medicine at the Sorbonne in Paris. After serving in the European theatre during WW II, Nell emigrated to Canada in 1947 eventually making Vernon her home for the next 70 years. To be closer to family, Nell moved to Cranbrook just this past summer. She made this move with her usual finesse! Nell passed away peacefully on March 25, 2017 at Joseph Creek Care Village.

Nell was a true lady, generous and insightful. She loved life and lived it to its fullest.

Her interment will be held at a later date in the family plot, in Pleasant Valley Cemetery in Vernon, BC.

Those wishing to make memorial donations may do so to the SPCA.

Arrangements entrusted to McPherson Funeral Service.

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