Velma passed away peacefully, following a lengthy illness on May 9th, 2010 at Chilliwack General Hospital at the age of 83 years. Velma was born on December 6th 1926 on the family farm at Brookdale, MB.
An excellent student, she followed her wish to become a teacher. Upon graduation from High School she taught at one-room schools as a “permit teacher” in rural Manitoba. As an MNS graduate (1949) Velma taught primary grades in Tilston and Dauphin.
Velma interrupted her teaching career to earn an RN degree (1956-59) from Grace Hospital in Winnipeg. Equipped with dual certification, she accepted a teaching position in the town of Inuvik, NWT (1959-71) where she fulfilled her ambition to teach Eskimo children.
While working there, she met her husband Reg and was married. Being the wife of an RCAF airman, she was then obliged to follow him on his several postings across Canada. While at Yorkton, SK she refreshed her RN degree and began a twenty-year nursing career including service in DVA hospitals at Halifax and Winnipeg, followed by six years at CGH’s extended care unit.
Velma was a talented handicraft hobbyist. Traditional Rug Hooking became her passion, in which she excelled as both an artist and a certified teacher. Velma’s other hobbies included gardening, walking groups, world travel, and watching Curling Briers. She was a woman whose energy, compassion, dedication and enthusiasm knew no boundaries.
An industrious achiever from early childhood, Velma upheld high ethical values and forever remained true to her cause. She was a proud Canadian, whose loss is of great magnitude to her circle of family, friends and associates. She will always be remembered and forever loved by those many persons whose lives she touched.
Velma leaves to mourn her husband, Reg; her son, Duncan Bruce (Norma) and her grandsons, Ian and Reid. She leaves behind her two sisters-in-law, Phyllis Harburn and Jean Harburn; and brother-in-law, Ray Daws; several nieces and nephews; many wonderful friends and cherished colleagues from the teaching and nursing professions.
Velma was predeceased by her parents, John and Annie Harburn; sisters, Jenny (Leonard), Viola (Fred), Evelyn (Leonard), Myrtle (Ben) and Joan and her brothers, Albert (Dorothy), Chester and Foster.
A Service of Remembrance will be held at the Woodlawn Mt. Cheam Funeral Home Chilliwack on Friday, May 21st, 2010 at 1:30 p.m. Major Angus Haggarty officiating. Interment will follow at the Carberry Plains Cemetery at a date to be announced.
Memorial donations may be made in Velma’s name to the Vancouver Children’s Hospital Building Fund.
Sincere appreciation for Velma’s care is extended to Dr. Ken Hirst; Net Care staff at Parkholm; Ward 3N staff at CGH and Douglas Wang and Karin Kunert at the Bradley Centre Respiratory Rehab Clinic. Your attention and concern assisted Velma through her difficult times.
Online condolences can be left at www.Woodlawn-MtCheam.ca