Reta passed away at Heritage Village on April 24, 2007 at the age of 98. She was born April 12, 1909 at Didsbury, Alberta. In 1920, as a young girl, she came with her parents Malcolm and Emma Ryckman to settle in Chilliwack, BC.
Reta married Ernest (Ernie) Thornton on June 28, 1928. They were married for 60 years. Reta and Ernie farmed for a short time on the Kipp Farm on Hodgins Avenue.
In 1932 they moved to Prairie Central Road where they continued to farm.
In 1937 their only daughter, Gail, was born. they retired in farming in 1968 and built a home on a small acreage from the farm. Reta resided at this home for 38 years, until her health deteriorated.
Her family was first and foremost in her life. She had a passion for vegetable and flower gardening. Reta also loved to feed the birds, especially the hummingbirds. She would keep a talley of them when they arrived each year, in her daily journal, which was kept since 1968. She crocheted numerous dish clothes and afghans. Reta enjoyed playing the piano. Her favourite melody was “Fascination”. She enjoyed TV programs such as Lawrence Welk, Coronation Street, and the Peter Mansbridge News. Reta will also be remembered for her witt, strong will and generosity.
She was predeceased by her husband, Ernie, in 1989, who was a son of the pioneers, George and Rebecca Thornton of Promontory. Also, parents Malcolm and Emma, sister Avril, brother Willard and many other family members.
She is survived by her daughter Gail (Lee) Moore, granddaughters Gayleen Moore, Colleen (Gerald) Buchwitz, grandson Scott Moore, great-grandson Logan Buchwitz, and nephew Ronald (Rose) Ryckman.
The family sends special thanks to Dr. Quinn for his dedication and care over the years. Thank you to Heritage Village, Home-Care Workers, and the Chilliwack General Hospital for all their compassionate care. Thanks to the many friends and neighbours for their visits.
A viewing will be held at Henderson’s Funeral Home on April 29, 2007 from 7-8:30 p.m. and April 30 from 10-12 noon.
A graveside service will be held on April 30 at 1 p.m. at Chilliwack Cemeteries on Little Mountain.
Tea to follow at Henderson’s Funeral Home.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to a charity of your choice.