Mary Isabel Messinger (nee Ross)

Mary Isabel Messinger (nee Ross)

Mary Isabel Messinger (nee Ross)

November 21, 1919 ~ September 6, 2011

Mary Messinger passed away on September 6, 2011 with her family by her side.

Mary was born in Creston, BC November 21, 1919 to Thomas and Maude Ross. She was a granddaughter of William and Jane Huscroft, pioneers of the Creston Valley. She received her education in Huscroft and Creston.

Her first job was at a bakery on the Creston main street where Panagos is today. She later worked in her uncle’s Mercantile store where Creston Bakery is now located. She often commented on the hitching poles at the front of the Merc for tying horse drawn wagons to. During WWII to traveled east to London, Ontario to work. Returning to Creston she married Charles Lane Messinger, December 27, 1945.

Early on Mary was a home maker for her large family. Her energy seemed endless as she kept a large garden, milked cows, sewed and knitted clothes and cooked meals. There was always room for one more visiting friend at her dinner table. As the children grew older Mary worked at Gordon Alger’s shoe store and in 1968 joined Lane in the operation of the Shell wholesale fuel business. In 1972 after Lane’s sudden death, Mary became the first female Shell agent in Canada. In 1973 she sold the business to her son Casey and continued to do the company books until her retirement in 1981.

Mary led an active life; an avid gardener and reader, excellent bridge player and competitive swimmer in the BC Senior Games. She knitted and sewed clothes for her children and grandchildren. A member of many community groups; Presbyterian Ladies, Eastern Star, Daughters of the Nile, a library and museum volunteer. Her abiding passion was travel. She took trips to Europe, Japan, Thailand, China, Australia, Costa Rica and throughout the USA. She particularly enjoyed her many trips to Mexico with her sister-in-law Betty Ross, and her sister and brother-in-law Betty and Johnny Salvador.

Mary was predeceased by her parents Maude and Thomas Ross, husband Lane, and her siblings; Jack, Maude, Jane, Thomas, Bruce, Betty and Corita.

She is survived by her daughters Judith Harringa, Shelley (Denis) Hellard, Renee (Michael) Maddess, Brenda (Philip) MacDonald, Kim (Gerard) Santucci, Gillian Messinger; her son Charles (Charlotte) Messinger; 13 grandchildren, Katheryn, Mark, Casey, Kayleen, Matthew, Amy, Brent, Darin, Chelsea, Sarah, Leah, Kelsey and Charlie; 7 great-grandchildren; Christina, John, EveLena, Maria, Lane, Maeve and Adelyn.

She will always be remembered for her graciousness, strength, love and devotion to her family.

The family would like to extend a special thanks to Marie Edwards at Lilac House for her loving care of our mother, Dr. Sidney Kettner and later Dr. Daile Hoffman, and the Creston Valley Hospital nursing staff.

A Celebration of Life Service was held on Monday September 12, 2011 at 11:00 a.m. at St. Stephen’s Presbyterian Church with Rev. Gwen Brown officiating.

Private family interment followed the service at Forest Lawn Cemetery, Erickson, BC.

Friends wishing to make a memorial tribute in Mary’s name may do so to the Creston Valley Hospice Society, #1 – 1720 Birch Street, Creston, BC V0B 1G5

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