Isabel passed away peacefully at Foothills Hospital on May 8, 2008. She was predeceased by her beloved husband Max, infant daughter Wendy, and two sisters Bev Hall and Kay McManus. She will be greatly missed by her four children and their spouses: Ted & Val, Jack & Quil, Peter & Mary Ellen, and Neil & Jennifer Almond, and her nine grandchildren Ryan, Melissa, Greg, Kyle, Jessalyn Almond and Hannah, Noah, Zoe and Isaac Fitch, as well as by her sister Barbara Swiggum and family and many other relatives and friends.
Isabel was born in Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, 1912. She graduated from the Royal Victoria Hospital of Nursing (Montreal) in 1938. During the war she served in England, Belgium and France as a lieutenant with the Nursing Sisters in the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps. She was awarded the Oak Leaf, a medal of valour, by King George VI for returning to a hospital that was under enemy fire to help with the evacuation of the wounded.
After the war she was stationed in Whitehorse where she met and fell in love with Max, to later marry in Calgary in 1948. They lived in England, Germany, across Canada, Yaounde, Africa and retired on Salt Spring Island for 18 “wonderful” years, surrounded by great friends, until Max’s death on May 11, 1999.
She then moved to Calgary to be close to her family. Any comment Isabel would ever make regarding her life was only that “She had been very fortunate and had lived a wonderful life!” To all who knew her, she was a rare, pure spirit who through her own incredibly positive outlook brought joy and happiness to all around her.
On May 11, 2008, 9 years from the date of Max’s passing, a warm and memorable memorial service was held for Isabel at the Southern Alberta Pioneer Lodge. I think she would have been pleased with her send off, and our toast to her life well lived. We believe Isabel’s spirit will live on with all of us and that even heaven will be truly blessed by her presence!
For those who desire, donations in memory of Isabel may be made to the Canadian Cancer Society.