Ingrid Lena McWilliams


Ingrid Lena

Ingrid, born in New Westminster, B.C. on 8 December 1916, passed away in West Vancouver on 27 August 2007 at the age of 90. She was predeceased by her beloved husband of 63 years, Warren, in 2004, and by her sister Ruth Clark, brother Carl Grafstrom and son-in-law Douglas Roe. She is survived by daughter Beth Ritchie (Ron) of Comox, daughter Alison Roe of North Vancouver, daughter Stephanie McWilliams of Vancouver, daughter Heather Oliveras (Robert) of Portland, Oregon and son Scott McWilliams (Alicia) of Victoria; by grandchildren Ian Ritchie (Anne), Kirsten Ritchie (Steve), Brianne Roe (David), Ryan Roe (Ashley), Sarah and Jonathan Oliveras, Rowan, Georgia and Ivy McWilliams; and by great-grandson Taylen Ritchie.

Ingrid was the eldest child of Carl and Hanna Grafstrom originally from Trelleborg, Sweden, and she grew up in Point Grey where she graduated from Lord Byng High School. She had many happy memories of spending adventurous childhood summers at the Canadian Fishing Company cannery managed by her father at Butedale on the North Coast of B.C. She worked for R.S. Day and Sons Insurance and then during the war at the office of the Farm Labour Pool. Ingrid met a handsome fellow Lord Byng student, Warren McWilliams, at the AYPA at St. Helen’s Anglican Church and they were married in 1941 beginning a wonderful and loving partnership which lasted for 63 years.

They lived in Vancouver, Victoria and Oak Bay and when Warren retired they moved to Comox where they spent 23 very happy years. She was involved in community life – the PTA, Kiwasa and Therapeutic Riding – and she was very active in Anglican Churches in Victoria and the Comox Valley, especially as a member of the St. John’s Guild. Gardening was both a pleasure and a passion for Ingrid and she created impressive outdoor spaces for all to enjoy. Ingrid and Warren cherished their many friends and their home was open to everyone and always full of laughter and good conversation.

Ingrid was a marvellous mother and well-beloved Mormor to her grandchildren, and she carried on many Swedish traditions and adding new ones such as her love of ABBA music. She was perpetually positive and cheerful with a great sense of humour and a wide stock of witty sayings to live by. “My Cup Runneth Over” summed up her attitude to life – it was a constant joy and she lived it to the fullest. Her brilliant smile and twinkling eyes will long be remembered by us all.

The family would like to express their heartfelt appreciation to the wonderful staff of the 3rd floor of the Capilano Care Centre for the loving care and attention they always gave to both Dad and Mum.

A Memorial Service will be held on Thursday, 6th September at the Boal Chapel at 1505 Lillooet Road, North Vancouver. In lieu of flowers, donations in Ingrid’s memory may be made to a charity of your choice.

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