Smith, Isabelle Margaret
1928 – 2006
Isabelle fought with courage and grace to a peaceful end on February 14, at The Dwelling Place care home in Nanaimo, BC. Her last days were spent enjoying the company of family and friends, and the contentment of having completed the majority of life tasks she had set for herself.
She was predeceased by husband Lewis, son Larry, and brothers Robert and Martin Gilkin; and is survived by brother John Gilkin. She is fondly remembered by daughters: Donna Black and Pat Mitchell (Les); son Jack; daughter-in-law Kathy Smith; nieces, nephews, great-grandchildren, and many friends.
Isabelle was born in Kelowna, but grew up in Coombs and Cumberland. During her wage earning and family raising years she lived in Bella Coola, Courtenay, Chemainus/Ladysmith area, Port Alberni, Campbell River, Barriere, Kamloops and Fanny Bay.
Isabelle’s was an independent and adventurous nature. She gamely took over the task of raising her family by virtue of her skills as a florist, fish plant worker, deckhand, plasterer, taxicab owner/operator, waitress, camp cook and restaurant proprietor. Her last commercial enterprise was the founding of Granny’s Kitchen in Fanny Bay.
During her retirement to Nanaimo, Isabelle enjoyed cruises to Alaska and Florida and vacations in Hawaii and Australia. She realized a lifelong ambition when, at age seventy, she drove herself across Canada, to meet as many people and see as many places as possible in one summer. As an afterthought she self-published a book based on her travel notes. Her activities in quilting, paper tole, gardening, tole painting, volunteering and lawn bowling slowed her progress in other writing projects.
As a lover of gardening, Isabelle instilled this same sentiment in all her children. For this reason our Celebration of Life will be held in summer, the season of homegrown flowers. Please join us at the Fanny Bay Community Hall for cake, tea, and flowers between 10am and 2pm on July 2nd, 2006. Homegrown flowers and reminiscences of Isabelle will be welcome.