Boulding, Edna Olive (née Curtis)
September 23, 1925 to January 12, 2017
Edna passed away peacefully after a short illness with her family by her side and in spirit.
Predeceased by her beloved husband John Wesley (Wes) in 2009 and son Charles Wesley (Charlie) in 1985. Her parents John and Olive Curtis of Belwood, Ontario and all eight of her siblings.
Survived by her children: Patricia Ann Stone (Jim Gutmann), Linda Grace Wittur, Thomas Edwin Boulding (Toni), Janette Roach, and Jeff Boulding (Maxine); five grandchildren: Desire Calder (Kevin), Thomas Edwin Boulding II (Jen), Keith Roach (Rachele), Kelsey Thomas (Nathan), and Kendra Roach; five great grandchildren Trevor, Greyson, and Natalie Thomas; Thomas Edwin Boulding III, and Hunter Roach.
As a baby, Edna was nicknamed Teddy, and enjoyed a healthy, happy childhood growing up on the family farm on the 10th Concession. She attended the Harewood one room school, which was located across the road from their farm, then went for high school to a nearby town of Fergus, paying for board in town with eggs.
She played softball, and loved going to local dances and a rare trip to the CNE, where the family showcased their cattle and horses – all fondly remembered by her.
When the Second World War broke out, her brothers all enlisted. She and her sister Mary enrolled at the Hamilton General Hospital, and trained to become Registered Nurses. Both graduated, and all of her brothers returned home from the war safe, and this education brought her many friends for life, travel opportunities and her husband and children. After graduation, Edna moved to Vancouver to work at Vancouver general Hospital. She spent the very limited personal time hiking the mountains around Vancouver and travelling into the interior to dude ranches.
When a family member needed nursing care, Edna returned to Ontario, and lucky for us children she did, as on a blind date arranged by her niece Audrey, she met Wes Boulding. They were married on March 21, 1953, and for nine years lived in Guelph, Ontario, and had six children.
In 1963, we moved west to Vancouver, setting up home in a new subdivision, Greenock Place, North Vancouver. Edna introduced her family to the places she had enjoyed on her first trip west, 3rd Beach in Stanley Park, year round hikes up Hollyburn Mountain. Edna’s sister Mary had married and was living in Smithers, BC, thus summer trips to visit had the Bouldings driving through the Okanagan.
In 1967, an opportunity with the new White Truck factory had the family moving to Kelowna. Wes started a company assembling wiring harnesses for Western Star trucks, and Edna worked alongside him managing the manufacturing side of the business while continuing to raise six children and nursing part time at Kelowna general Hospital.
Edna’s love of the outdoors had the family enjoying all aspects of life in the Okanagan, and the whole family learned to ski at Last Mountain. Mom believed travel to be educational, and thus the family enjoyed many trips together, camper truck trips into the back country of BC, venturing north to Smithers and south to California, by train back to Ontario a few times, Grand Bahama Island and Hawaii.
Our big house on Pandosy Street, across from KGH, was always filled with family and friends, everyone was welcome.m Mom would say “just add more water to soup”, but in reality she probably could have fed an army at the drop of a hat, as she loved to cook.
The family, in 1976, was rocked by illness when Charlie developed kidney failure, Mom and her nursing background proved invaluable, enabling Charlie to do home dialysis until a sibling transplant was arranged. All of us, including Mom, volunteered to be matched. Our brother Tom was the best match, and after the transplant, Mom nursed both of them. Charlie enjoyed a few years travelling, but passed away. This period, though devastating, brought our family closer together. Watching and working with our mother was an education in caring, compassion, commitment and strength.
Mom and Dad moved to a condo at Holiday Park, and began to enjoy “The Good Life”. They bought a motor home, and continued driving all over BC and western Canada and the US. Edna continued to work as a Registered Nurse at Sutherland Hills until she was 72 – but once she did retire, she set her sights on Australia. Her first was a trip with three friends, and on this trip, Mom was proud to say she toured by herself over to Ayres Rock, but upon her return to Kelowna with the pictures and stories, Dad had to go and do New Zealand while they were over there. They also got in a couple of Alaska cruises, and a bus trip through the Eastern Provinces. They would regularly travel to California, to house and cat sit for Patti and Jim, and did a circle driving tour of Arizona with Jeff and Maxine and Linda and her husband, Ray.
Failing health had them curtailing some activities, and in 2009 a move into The Village at Mill creek was made. Even as Dad’s health failed, another trip for them was being planned. They said the Panama Canal looked like fun. Unfortunately, Dad passed away before moving into their new apartment, but Mom went ahead with the Panama Canal Cruise with Patti, Linda, Janette and granddaughters Desire and Kendra. This was when we found her such a fun person to travel with, so she accompanied Linda and Ray to Cuba, and spent many summers with them at their cabin on Adams Lake.
Edna’s quiet, kind, caring, gentle strength will be missed. We would like to thank the Village at Mill creek, BC Ambulance Service, KGH Emergency and 2 East staff and central Okanagan Hospice for their wonderful treatment of Mom.
Condolences can be forwarded to email@example.com. In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made to the charity of your choice.
Per Edna’s wishes, there will be no service. Instead, she said go out, have a walk with friends and family, and think of her. Arrangements in care of First Memorial Funeral Services, 250-762-2299.