Phyllis Soles passed away peacefully at home on March 6, surrounded by her loving family.
Phyllis was born in Halifax, November 26, 1925. A true Maritimer, Phyllis and brothers Bill and Charles spent countless summers at Marion Bridge, Cape Breton Island which held a special place in her heart.
During World War II, Phyllis met a Navy sailor, Colin Soles. They married and spent fifty-three years together, raising three boys, Ken, Ian and Lorne.
Colin’s job with BC Hydro took them to Prince George and Vancouver Island before settling in VanAnda. Texada Island was rough and tumble in the 1960’s; Phyllis committed to only staying five years. Five years turned into fifty-four. She became involved in community life, becoming an ambulance attendant and First Aider.
Phyllis believed in volunteerism and even in her ninth decade she was active with the Police Commission, Restorative Justice Committee, United Church Women, Chamber of Commerce, Kids Saving Earth Camps and the Terry Fox Run, to mention a few. Her most cherished commitment was as Brown Owl for the Texada Brownies. For decades she led girls on the island and organized endless summer camps. During her Brownie days, she discovered her love of crafts, becoming designated as ‘Crafty’. Family members cherish what she lovingly created.
Throughout her life, Phyllis treasured her relationship with brother Bill and sister-in-law Marge; forming an enduring bond with her nieces Layne, Sande, and nephew Scott.
Phyllis’ home was a safe haven to her son’s friends and she became a surrogate Mom to many.
In addition to welcoming young people to their table, Phyllis warmly received Colin’s mother, Florence, into their home for twenty-three years.
Phyllis loved road trips; most notably camping across Canada as a 1967 centennial project. As retirees, Phyllis and Colin enjoyed winters in Arizona while traveling to events for their grandchildren, great nieces and nephews. Phyllis’s love of kinship and adventure continued after Colin passed away in 2001. Her 90 th birthday was marked by a two-week family trip to Scotland where she danced at a Ceilidh.
Phyllis’s later years found her walking her dog B.B., contributing to her community, and visiting with her extensive clan.
Phyllis was predeceased by her parents, brothers, and beloved husband Colin. She leaves to mourn her sons Ken (Karen), Ian (Katie) and Lorne (Julie) and her grandchildren, Derek, Erin and Natasha, nieces Layne (Ross) Sande (Mike), and nephew Scott (Maria) and their families, as well as her close friend, Linda. The family thanks Dr. Kevin Black for his compassionate care during Phyllis’s final hours.
A memorial service will be held April 18, 2020 at 1:00pm at the United Church in VanAnda, tea to follow at the Legion.
(Unfortunately this service had to be postponed due to COVID-19 pandemic.)