An Abbotsford grandmother had a birthday surprise come her way on Sunday.
Ellenor McClelland turned 66, and her family and friends surprised her by driving, cycling or walking by her home as she sat out front, and wishing her a happy birthday from a distance.
Ellenor, who is a widow, lives with her daughter Tara and her family in their suite on Creekstone Drive – east of Highway 11 and south of Bateman Road – and self-isolating due to the COVID-19 pandemic has been particularly tough on her.
Tara said her mom normally volunteers Saturdays at the Mennonite Central Committee and participates in seniors’ group there.
She also does noon-hour supervision at Thomas Swift Elementary, where one of Tara’s children goes. (Her two other children also previously attended Thomas Swift but are now at Clayburn Middle School.)
“She loves all the kids at the school,” Tara said of her mom.
So Tara said she reached out on the Facebook pages for the school and neighbourhood, suggesting a birthday parade for her mom.
On Sunday, Tara decorated the outside of their home, and then knocked on Ellenor’s door at 2 p.m and asked her to come outside for a minute.
About 30 cars drove by, plus there were pedestrians and kids on bikes. She said they did everything they could to ensure that people adhered to the social-distancing guidelines.
Tara said although the whole thing took only about 10 minutes, it made her mom very happy.
“It brought tears to some people’s eyes to see how quickly our neighbourhood come together just to put a smile on my mom’s face,” she said.