RATHWELL, Alice Kathleen (née Lacy)

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Alice Kathleen (née Lacy) Rathwell
September 12, 1922 – January 10, 2021

Kathleen was born in Falkland, BC, two years after her parents emigrated from England. In 1925 her family moved to Salt Spring Island (SSI) and started a farm on 135 acres at Fulford Harbour. She and her four siblings attended the one room Isabella Point School. Kathleen joined the army in Ottawa, Ontario as a cook during WWII. There she met her husband Victor Rathwell and they had a daughter Margaret. After Victor’s death in 1963 she returned to her parents’ farm on Isabella Point Road, SSI. The farm had goats, chickens, sheep and large vegetable and flower gardens. She taught all the grandchildren how to feed the animals, milk the goats, weed the gardens and collect the wood. As a family they were self sufficient living off the land and sea for their livelihood. Kathleen won awards every year at SSI Fall Fair. Most years she was awarded a ribbon for almost every entry and she did keep track – usually on the back of a piece of junk mail or used envelope (nothing was wasted). She was a master of “reduce, reuse, reuse again” long before we ever heard the term recycle. Kathleen was an avid bridge player and member of the Fulford Bridge Club. She was a lifetime member of the SSI Garden Club and a devout attendee of St. Mary’s Anglican Church. Her garden flowers were forever on display in the church for Sunday services. In 1983, after the passing of her parents she moved to her own home on Beddis Road, Ganges, BC. She was an excellent tennis and badminton player. She was still playing well into her 80s. In 2014, at the age of 92, she floated down the Penticton River Channel on an inner tube with her niece Janet Lacy. The photos of their adventure made the front page of the Penticton Herald. She taught cribbage to her grandchildren and many of the Oak Bay Lodge staff. She spoke to everyone she encountered and she always spoke her mind. However, no one could miss the twinkle in her beautiful blue eyes.

A special thanks to the staff at Oak Bay Lodge and the Summit who treated “Great-Grandma” with much love and respect.

Kathleen was predeceased by her husband Victor Rathwell, her siblings, Captain Edward Lacy (Mollie), Mary McDonald (Jack), Ruby Alton (Roy) and her parents Arthur and Hilda Lacy. She is survived by her daughter Margaret Leck, her brother Harold Lacy, grandchildren Lisa Himmelman (Matt), Tim Leck (Alison), Denise Poirier, great grandchildren Samuel and Melissa Poirier, Odessa, Athena, and Logan Guest as well as many nieces and nephews.

A celebration of life will be held later on SSI.
Margaret can be reached at mleck@shaw.ca

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