It is with much sadness that our family mourns the sudden passing of our Mom, Grama, Great-Grama, Great-Great-Grama, Sister-in-law, and Aunt at the age of 96 years on November 25, 2022 at Lacombe, Alberta.
Bea was born in Okotoks, Alberta on August 23, 1926 the second youngest to Henry [Harry] Henderson and Mary Cameron Henderson. She attended a one-room schoolhouse up to Grade 8 and enjoyed a close family childhood in a large farmhouse filled with kids and music where her Dad was one of the first engineers in the gas industry at Turner Valley where there is now a Historic Site. On October 25, 1946 Bea married Walton Rider McLaughlin in Calgary and had two daughters. They were married until his passing in October 2005 – 59 years.
Bea is survived by one daughter Brenda Verheire, granddaughter Susan Couper [Lyle Travis], and grandson Bruce Weber [Jayne]; son-in-law Jack Giesbrecht and grandsons Ed Giesbrecht [Yvonne] and Charlie Giesbrecht [Tasha]. She is also survived by great-grandchildren Kelsey Sutherland, Sheldon Petty, Riley Giesbrecht [Treese], Alesha Kahn [Shabrez], Melissa Torres [Christian], Cassandra Torres, Braden Giesbrecht and Jake Giesbrecht, and five great-great-grandchildren.
Bea was predeceased by her husband Walt; daughter Judith Giesbrecht [Jack]; son-in-law George Verheire; seven siblings: Emma Maloney, Helen Miller, Reta Bertness, Kathy Vandewark, Audrey [Stan] Skerry, Bud Henderson, and Donny Henderson.
Bea worked during the second world war on printing press and became very good at it and was promoted to a position usually given to the men. After marrying she became an Air Force wife and lived in Vancouver; Morhange, France at 2F Wing Grostenquin; Chatham, New Brunswick; Cold Lake, Alberta; and Ottawa, Ontario. At many of the military bases Mom worked at Eatons including the store on Sparks Street in Ottawa. Walt retired and they moved to Maple Ridge, BC where they both worked for a few years and then retired to a lovely log house on the shores of the Shuswap Lake at Chase, BC where all the family learned to water ski and spent many a summer vacation. Many of Mom and Dad’s friends from the US and Canada came to visit them and Mom always had a big pot of coffee on and made wonderful meals. Dad passed away at Chase and Mom decided about a year later to move to Ponoka, Alberta.
Over the years Mom was a wonderful homemaker and stay-at-home Mom when Brenda and Judy were in school. There are fond memories of hot chocolate and homemade cookies waiting for us when we got home from school on brutally cold New Brunswick days. Being a military family we were able to travel a good part of the world…..always camping. We camped all over Europe and North America. After retirement, Mom and Dad were snow birds for many years to Arizona and the Baja, Mexico. They made friends everywhere they went and it was amazing how many of those friends were lifelong. She had a very keen sense of humour and it stayed with her right to the end!
Mom was the best Mom a person could ask for and she will be missed by many! Rest in Peace my sweet Mom.