Eleanor Isabel ANDREW was born on 11 Apr 1927 on the family farm in North St Eleanors, Prince Edward Island near Summerside, the youngest daughter of Harry Charles ANDREW and Eleanor Louise "Nell" RICHARDSON. After their farm was sold during WWII to become part of the new air base, many in her family decided to make a new life on the west coast. Over a period of several years (1945-1953), most travelled across Canada to Vancouver Island, settling in the Duncan area in the Cowichan Valley. On Dec 17, 1945, Eleanor and her brother Alan ANDREW traveled mainly by train from PEI and arrived in Vancouver BC on Christmas Day. Their last stop was on Vancouver Island where they reunited with at least their brother Dean ANDREW. Others would soon follow.
Eleanor met her husband Vernon G JONES at a dance, and they were married on 12 Nov 1949 in Duncan BC. They remained there for the rest of their lives, raising three caring sons in a loving home, remodeling and maintaining their house and garden on Beech Avenue.
A celebration of life was held on 30 Apr 2016 in Duncan. Almost all of Eleanor's immediate family attended, along with other relatives, friends, and neighbors. There was no shortage of stories about this very special woman. Some in attendance were brave enough to stand in front of the microphone so everyone could hear their thoughts and memories. My sister was among them and I was grateful that she shared memories for both of us. It was a real gift to hear all these stories about different aspects of Eleanor's life, and to meet those who shared these experiences with her. Of course there was also time to offer more private condolences during the reception, with hugs all around.
I have many fond memories of my visits with Aunt Eleanor, especially in more recent years, sometimes at restaurant lunches and at larger family gatherings which she often hosted. Quiet but strong-willed, with a ready laugh and wonderful sense of humour, she was always a joy to be with.
There was also a picture on display of Aunt Eleanor taken on board a cruise ship during a crab eating contest. She loved seafood! Although it looked like the huge mound of crab in front of her was for her sole consumption (no seafood pun intended), I was told that she had help from two others at her table. In spite of being outnumbered by those at other tables, Eleanor's hearty appetite and enthusiasm helped her table secure second place. Way to go!
We were also treated to a musical interlude by Eleanor's niece Lorelei, who chose to honour Aunt Eleanor by singing "Keep On the Sunny Side". This song was first popularized by the Carter Family in 1928, the year after Eleanor was born. Lorelei was accompanied by her partner Guy on guitar, and many joined in on the chorus. She explained that "I thought this song was fitting because Aunt Eleanor, while being sensitive to others' feelings and not a stranger to life's challenges and troubles, had the ability to keep such a positive outlook. I think her cheerfulness was one of her many gifts." Well said, Lorelei, and well sung:)
A touching obituary written by her family was published on 6 Apr 2016 in the Cowichan Valley Citizen, page 25:
Jones, Eleanor Tuesday, 08 Mar 2016
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Eleanor Jones after a brief stay at Cowichan District Hospital, one month short of her 89th birthday.
Eleanor was predeceased by her husband Vernon in 2000 as well as her parents and 5 siblings. She is survived by her three sons Kerry (Cindy), Daryl (Cindy), and Michael (Gillian); her eight grandchildren Christopher, Candace, Sarah, Paul (Jennifer), Pamela (Matt), Evan, Graeme, and Colin; two great-grandchildren Connor and Aubrey; one brother Sid Andrew (Barb); sister-in-law Elaine Jones (Tom Browne); and numerous nieces and nephews.
Eleanor was the second youngest of seven children born in North St. Eleanors, P.E.I. to Eleanor (Nell) and Harry Andrew. She was a strong, independent and positive person, who gardened with great skill and was very resourceful in maintaining her home of 60 plus years. She bought a much wanted truck at 77 years old, loved her computer, and was always interested in the latest technology. Eleanor loved family gatherings, seafood dinners, and going out for lunch. She was well-liked by all who met her and much loved by her family, who were not expecting to lose her so suddenly. Mom will be sadly missed.
The family would like to thank Dr. Nadine Robertson, Beth (CDH), Kelly (Home Care) for all their help, and the Duncan Fire Department, which was a big part of Eleanor and Vernon’s life.
A celebration of her life will be held in the near future. [held 30 Apr 2016]
Online condolences may be made at www.hwwallacecbc.com