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Margaret Chalmers

Margaret Chalmers

Monday, October 19th, 2020

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Obituary

Obituary for Margaret Chalmers

Mom was born in a small village in Inverness-shire, Scotland. In 1941 she met Duncan Sr., a young soldier then stationed in the village, whom she would eventually marry. With Duncan leaving to go to Holland, Margaret was assigned to a paint factory in Glasgow. She told us of the terror of air raid sirens and the distinctive drone of German bombers. She spent many nights as a roof top fire watcher whose job it was to spot and suppress fires from the incendiary bombs. In 1956 the family emigrated to Canada where she supported Duncan Sr. in his service as a United Church minister.

Mom and Dad loved to travel and after retirement went on numerous trips around the world. They both loved to dance and polished the parquet floor of many a cruise ship. After Duncan Sr. died in 2005, Mom continued traveling well into her late eighties. There was no way she was going to miss out on exotic destinations, dining at the captain’s table, and chit chatting with fellow travelers.

Mom burned brightly, lived life fully, always up for an occasion. She was wickedly observant and had a sardonic sense of humour. Indefatigable and eminently pragmatic, she soldiered her way through many illnesses, including cancer, none of which seemed to put a dent in her resolve to live life with gusto. When extreme old age and illness finally caught up with her, we can only imagine her finally saying, “All right then, if you insist, let’s get on with it”. Always a realist she took everything in stride. It’s hard to believe that she is gone. She was a unique presence and will burn brightly in our memories.

Her family is grateful to the many people who gave her help along the way—the neighbours in the condo where she continued to live after Duncan died, especially Carollyne Sinclaire who went beyond what anyone could expect in her support at all times of day and night. Also the kind and ever compassionate nurses and OTs at 3 Bridges who helped keep her going and guided the family through the health system. Thanks also to the nurses and care workers at West Vancouver Care Centre who took care of Margaret after it became impossible for her to remain at home.

In the last hours of her life, her long time friend and minister at St. Andrews-Wesley church, Jen Cunnings, ensured that Margaret received pastoral care from Reverend Lorraine Ashdown. For that we are also grateful.

Margaret was pre-deceased by her husband Reverend Duncan Chalmers and her daughter Florence Boyland. She is survived by her daughter Avril, son Duncan, grandchildren Jason and Adrienne, her brother David (Margaret), her niece Fiona (Tony), her son-in-law Tony Boyland, nephews David (Margaret), Bruce (Christine), and their children Alex, Ryan, Chelsea and Nathan.

A private family memorial will be held at a later date.

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Linda Vogt Turner

I have fond memories of Margaret and Duncan. I attended Cliff Avenue United Church in the 60s when they both served there. I met up with them again years later when they were serving at North Surrey United and I was a Presbytery Rep. It was Duncan who encouraged me to get a New Testament that included a Greek transliteration. I am so grateful and glad he did. Later I met up with Margaret and Duncan again when my husband Steve and I divorced and I moved to Vancouver. When I started dating the late Gordon Turner, Gordon was the senior minister at St Andrew’s Wesley United and Gordon I ate lunch together every Sunday, at the Central Plaza...where to my delight we often joined Margaret and Duncan at their table. Both Margaret and Duncan were faithful stewards of The Good News of The Lord Jesus Christ. I am proud and grateful to have been at their table and part of their conversation. I imagine them together with Gordon at a different and new table beyond the Gate ...beckoning us to join them. May it give you comfort to know...Margaret made a difference in my life and is fondly remembered.
Comment | Posted at 01:15pm via Condolence
KM

Katherine Montgomery

We had the great pleasure of meeting Margaret & Duncan in the early 60s and who helped us to make Canada our new home.
We will be for ever thankful, and not forgotten Mrs Chalmers.
Condolences to Avril and all the family.
Drummond & Katherine Montgomery
Comment | Posted at 03:17pm via Condolence
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