Betty Kay



Betty Kay was born in Cottingham Yorkshire on August 9, 1924. She was the youngest of four sisters outliving them all. To her everlasting regret, she had to leave school at 11 to work, joined the Women’s Air Force for the duration of the war and learned to drive heavy duty army lorries and trucks. Driving became a passion of hers and after becoming a mother, she spent many years in car delivery, driving brand new cars from the Morris Motors Factory in Oxford to showrooms around England, and then hitch- hiking back carrying her trade plates. It was a job she loved.

In the 1970s she retired from car delivery on the passing of her husband, packed up from Oxford, and moved back to the East coast of Yorkshire, to Bridlington. She worked at the spa there catering to big show business names when they went to Bridlington to perform their shows. In 1989, Betty moved to Alberta to be close to her daughter Jennifer. Jennifer and Betty became very close during the last 29 years of her life. We lived in both Edmonton and Grande Prairie, for a few years with her grand-daughter Meredith to whom she was close. Together she and Jennifer traveled, walked a lot, cared for and shared our beloved dogs, shovelled snow (lol!), and she made a lot of friends. She had always wanted to come to Canada because she sensed a quality of life here that was not possible in England, and as I was able to provide the comfort of a shared home, she was able to spread her wings in the seniors’ community.

Betty in her time was an avid golfer, lawn bowler, practitioner of yoga, and a keen gardener. Her father had been a market gardener, and Betty inherited his skills and passion for growing flowers. In her 80’s she taught herself to play bridge and spent many hours at the bridge table until her hearing made it impossible. Our travels on this side of the pond took us to the other parts of Canada, South America and the Caribbean. She loved the ocean, her dogs and in particular her pet schnauzers, Penny 1, Penny 2, Charlie, and most recently Murphie.

Her pride in her children, her pilot son Geoff from Scotland, and her daughter Jennifer, teacher and writer, was unsurpassed. Although Betty had five grandchildren, she was particularly close to Geoff’s eldest daughter Samantha, and Jennifer’s daughter Meredith. Samantha was able to bring her two children Isla and Austin to visit her two years ago, the only great grandchildren she was able to meet.

Betty loved living in Virginia Park. Although increasingly frail, she was a strong and dynamic woman who throughout her life was brave, took risks, loved learning about world affairs, the stock market, shopping and spending times with her friends and her daughter. She was an amazing role model for independence and strength and is a tough act to follow. Her death, sudden and unexpected was a great shock I will miss her. I am happy I could make her life richer and better, as she made mine.

In Loving Memory of
Betty Kay
(Maiden: Coupland)
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