Cecilia Caroline Fraser

In Memorial

Jan 18, 1923 – Feb 20, 2012

Determined to renew a driver’s license as well as return home to her medical-transcription business, Cecelia died this week in her 90th year, to the end characteristically self-effacing and unshakably entrepreneurial. She slipped away surrounded by family. Always tireless? Whether at her desk or stove, e-mailing reports or trying out new recipes, playing the church organ or preserving peaches? She also loved to shop. Her weaknesses were for lipstick and Diet Sprite. A child of the Depression she sought out sales all over Maple Ridge in case her cupboards of paper towels and tinned pineapples ran out. (They never did.) She remembered everything. Names of nuns cloistered away for decades; a second cousin’s birthday; where to mail donations to the least entitled. In her last days she recalled seeing at age two a water snake under the footbridge of her parents’ shack on a North Van tidal slough. She grew up in Dunbar, where her father and brothers hewed from the forest a building lot and she milked the cow. Leaving Little Flower Academy after Grade 10, she set to work as a Woodward’s clerk and then learned shorthand at Pittman’s. For almost 40 years she was a full-time medical stenographer at St. Paul’s Hospital. At the same time she and her beloved LyIe liked to move, living in 19 different residences before retiring along the way to a blueberry farm in Pitt Meadows. Which was where as a freelancer she really got going, bussing back into Vancouver every other day for the next 25 years to work for different doctors. She once sang in competition as a teenage soprano in a now defunct hall at Gore and Hastings. Not long after she started raising five children. Her thoughtfulness for others is sorely missed by many others including husband Lyle (91), with whom she celebrated (dancing) 68 years of marriage on their grandson’s wedding day last August in Osoyoos; children Mary-Lou, Bill, Dave (Christa), Terry (Harry), Keath (Lorraine); nine grandchildren (one deceased); two great grandchildren; and her younger brother Ray. The family is deeply grateful to Mary-Lou Wilsdon and her daughter Christina for unwavering devotion to both Cecelia and Lyle, particularly over the last three months; and to Bill Fraser.

Prayers Thursday Feb 23 at 6 pm; funeral Friday Feb 24 at 11 am; both at St Luke’s Catholic Church in Maple Ridge.

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Condolence Messages

  1. Neil and Cynthia Stephens

    Cece was greatly loved by our parents, Harold and Gladys Stephens. She gave me (Cynthia) great encouragement that you’re never too old nor too far away to do what you need to. That’s quite a legacy! Thanks, Cece. Goodbye.

  2. Indeed,knowing our lovely, caring band-mate Christina Wilsdon as we do, we know just how much she loved and cared for Gramma Cecilia. And certainly some of your Gramma’s genes will live on in you Christina – the enthusiasm, sense of adventure and down-right determination, all wrapped up in a loving and caring disposition!! Sincere condolences to all family members and Miki looks forward to singing “Danny Boy” for Grampa Lyle “Someday Soon”!!
    Love & Hugs,

    Miki (Christina’s Razamajazz! band-mate)

  3. Christina, on behalf of the GNWT Culture and Heritage Division and the NWT Arts Council, please accept our sincere condolences to you and family.

    Keep your Grandmother’s memory strong!

    Boris Atamanenko, Barb cameron, Debbie Matheson and staff of the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre in Yellowknife.

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