August 19, 2022
In loving memory ~
Irene, aged 88, passed peacefully on August 19, 2022, in Victoria, BC, with the comfort of family by her side. She was predeceased by her beloved husband, Keith, in 2019.
Born to pioneer farmers, George A., and Martha Wright, of Richmond, BC, Renie was the cherished little sister to siblings Jack (John), Bud (Norman), Win, Freddie, Ev, George, and Tom. She was an active member of CGIT (Canadian Girls In Training), Richmond 4-H Club, and South Arm United Pioneer Church, where she was the organist. After completing secretarial school at Pitman Business College in 1953, Irene had a rewarding career as an office professional for over 40 years, retiring in 1999. Employers included CBC-TV Vancouver, Central Glass Nanaimo, and Nanaimo-Ladysmith School District (21+ years).
In 1954, Rene attended YTS (Youth Training School) at UBC, where she met Keith. After adventurously travelling for nine months with life-long friend Marjorie Mort throughout Europe and eastern North America in 1957, Irene married Keith in 1959 and settled into farm life in North Oyster, near Ladysmith, BC.
They raised their family, daughter, Shannon (Rob), and son, Ian (Isabelle), and welcomed beloved grandchildren Keagan, Nicolas, Ella, and Benjamin.
Irene was the heart of the family home, always there to support the numerous activities her family members undertook. She was the #1 fan at every sporting, musical, club, and academic endeavour, and she tirelessly supported Keith in all his agricultural, fire fighting, disaster-preparedness training, and other ventures. She also found time to volunteer with the North Oyster Fire Department Ladies’ Auxiliary, the Mt Brenton Power Squadron, and the Ladysmith New Horizons Historical Society (including helping to compile the local history book, Chronicle of Ladysmith and District). Irene and Keith enjoyed being social members of the North Oyster and Area Historical Society (NOAHS).
Irene personified dedication, kindness, and compassion, especially for children, seniors, and those differently-abled. She was a supporter of local authors, artists, and theatre, and was a wordsmith who could out-limerick anyone. She had a great sense of humour, and always loved a good pun or joke. Rene was the family pianist and photographer and she happily organized family reunions and other gatherings. She and Keith enjoyed cruising, visiting the Caribbean, Panama, Alaska, and Brazil, and they enjoyed travelling together to conferences and to visit family and friends. Out of Irene’s avocado-coloured kitchen came the best pancakes, soups, Nanaimo Bars, butter tarts, canned pears, and Yellow Plum jam.
Irene will be remembered by those near and far. Thank you to everyone who stayed in touch with her after Keith died, and during the pandemic. It meant the world to her. Irene’s family also thanks the dedicated caregivers at the Kiwanis Pavilion for their compassionate care.
A Celebration of Irene’s Life will be held on Saturday, October 22, 2022, at the North Oyster Community Centre (13467 Cedar Road, Ladysmith, BC) from 1:30-4:30 pm. At Irene’s request, please wear bright colours. COVID protocols will be in place. Contact Shannon afterwards at firstname.lastname@example.org for a link to a recording of the ceremony.
Condolences may be left at Evergreen Cremation Centre’s obituary website: https://www.evergreencremationcentre.com/
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Irene’s memory to the Nanaimo-Ladysmith Schools Foundation, the North Oyster and Area Historical Society, or the Alzheimer Society of BC.
Evergreen Cremation Centre