Thursday, September 28, 2023
September 28, 2023

CRAN, Deborah Leslie

We are saddened to announce the death of longtime Saltspring resident, Deborah Leslie Cran on Tuesday, June 27th 2023.

Deborah grew up in Vancouver and moved to Toronto as a young woman. There she had her fi rst, child, Sean, before returning to the West Coast, meeting and marrying Chris, having Sascha, becoming a step mother to Riah, and moving fi nally back to Saltspring Island in 1985 where she first lived in 1977.

She was an accomplished gardener, and delighted in the magic of nature. She spent countless hours growing and preserving food – her fruit leather was legendary. Deborah also studied and practiced herbal healing, often making her own remedies from plants she grew. She was known for her beautiful dancing, was a great support to her friends and family, always willing to lend her hand in a crisis and, as her husband says, “Everybody knows she’s the brains behind pa” (Bob Dylan). When she was in the company of children her own child-like nature was revealed and she brought to them a sense of magic. Deborah was not one for the spotlight but had many quiet accomplishments that were only later revealed. Moments like when she anonymously delivered Christmas to families in need demonstrate her kindness, helpfulness, sensitivity and generosity of spirit.

Deborah is survived by her husband, Chris Anderson, son, Sean Cran (Deanna), daughter Sascha Rackemann (Peter), step-daughter Riah Hoechsmann (Alex), niece, Zoe Antonik (Scott), step-son Bill Boertjes (Milena), sister Roby and grandchildren Chloe, Ava, Maia, Tristan, Lucas and Adriana.

According to her wishes, Deborah was buried at the Saltspring Island Natural Cemetery in a private ceremony on July 8th. Her family grieves this immense loss and welcomes those who knew her to join in a memorial in Deborah’s honour on August 3rd at 3pm at the home of Chris and Deborah.

In lieu of flowers, please be kind to one another. Share your struggles, fears, and joys with open hearts and minds. Be present and patient in each other’s journeys.


  1. I’ll always remember making plum chutney with Deb. When it began sticking to the bottom of the immense pot I thought it was done for but Deb was of another mind. She rescued it and labeled it “Smoked Chutney”. I understand it was well received by friends.
    What a creative solution she found! It also took a pretty good sense of humour to come up with that!
    Will miss you, especially at chutney time, dear Deborah.
    Rest now, in magnificent peace. Sheila Reid


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