December 17, 1933 – January 20, 2023
In Loving Memory ~
Roberta was Mrs. Roses or Auntie Roberta to most that knew her, but to us, she was Mom and Grandma. She died peacefully on January 20, 2023, after a brief illness. Having spent her last couple of days surrounded by an outpouring of love and visits from family and friends.
A lifelong resident of Cumberland, Roberta lived the first 40 years of her life in her childhood home. Then moved into her second and final Cumberland home, up on the hill with beautiful views of the mountains.
As a child, Roberta grew up playing sports and Highland Dancing. In her 20s, she and a group of friends packed up and flew to Hawaii on holiday. Trips such as this were not something typically done in the 1950s. They planned to do a lot of shopping, so they arrived with empty suitcases to fill. She loved to shop, and she loved shoes. Two weeks before she passed, she was thrilled to have her latest purchase arrive in the mail, a specially ordered pair of shoes, custom-made sporting her initials.
Roberta graduated from Cumberland High School and went on to attend Normal School (teacher training school) in Victoria. At the age of 18, she started teaching. She taught at Tsolum, Courtenay El. and then Cumberland El.
30 years into her career she decided to attend summer school to upgrade to a Bachelor of Education. One of the program’s required courses was a PE class, where she was required to jump on a trampoline. In order to avoid this, every time she neared the front of the line and her turn, she’d sneak to the back of the line. Somehow, she still passed and got her degree.
After a 46-year career, Roberta retired from teaching. During her career, she taught 3 generations of Cumberland families, as well as her own children, nieces and nephews. She was also the MayPole teacher, each year for Empire Days. She remembered every student she taught.
Roberta married Bill in 1958, and they were married for 62 years. Together they went on many adventures, including ski trips to Mt. Hood and Tahoe (where she learned to ski while in her 40s because the kids were doing it), Jazz Festival trips, slow pitch tournaments, and bus trips to watch the Blue Jays.
When their kids were young, Roberta and Bill got their cabin on Comox Lake. Summers were spent at Up The Lake, with her kids and grandkids, her brother’s family a couple of cabins away, and all the neighbours in Stockand Bay.
Roberta had a very tight-knit group of lifelong friends. For over 60 years they met weekly for “Club,” aka playing cards, eating food, and telling stories.
Roberta hated to cook, or maybe she just liked going out more. She was famous for claiming that she only ate out one meal per day. But we all knew she’d be out for coffee, lunch, and likely dinner as well. There were always friends or family she had to catch up with over a meal, and her and Bill’s special Friday night dinners out to take part in. And no trip was complete without Roberta planning which restaurants the next meal would be at.
When Roberta retired, she took over the babysitting of her 2 grandkids. Days spent with Grandma included vital tasks such as learning to read, write and illustrate storybooks, and an education on where the best lunch restaurants in town were. Even when she wasn’t babysitting, she still came up with a reason to stop by every day for a visit.
Roberta lived a very full life. However, she rarely reminisced about the past. She was too busy living in the present, and whatever her next adventure may be.
Roberta was predeceased by her husband Bill, her parents Nellie and Robert, brother Ron and cousin Karl.
She is survived by her kids Kelly (Gavin), and Robert, grandkids Elyse (Drew) and Jordan (Brooke), and sister-in-law Mary. As well as numerous nieces, nephews, and all their kids and grandkids. She’ll also be missed by a large close-knit community of lifelong friends.
There will be no funeral by request.
Condolences may be offered at www.telfordtoneffboyd.ca
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