January 3, 1950 – February 7, 2021
It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of Wendy on February 7th, 2021 at Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster.
Wendy was born in Abbotsford at MSA Hospital, then known as the Cottage Hospital on January 3rd, 1950. Wendy grew up in Abbotsford, graduating from Abby Senior in 1968, where she earned a medal for the best French student in British Columbia. This was a great source of pride and proved useful later in her life. Wendy graduated from UBC in 1972 with her B.A. in Political Science. She eventually went onto earn her Masters in Business Leadership.
Wendy married Brian Lee and they raised four daughters in Abbotsford. Many will remember Wendy as a Councilor of the City of Abbotsford, before and after amalgamation. After her family was grown, she moved to Vancouver to pursue a varied and accomplished career. She held positions with the United Way and Crofton House School, but the highlight of her career was the years she spent as the Executive Director of the British Columbia Superintendents of Schools.
Upon her retirement, she then spent 18 months as a volunteer in Jamaica with the CUSO. She made us all jealous with her photos of beach days spent with friends. Upon her return, she found retirement didn’t suit her, and she took on contract positions with Elections BC, Elections Canada, Town of Gibson’s Landing and the shishalh Nation. Wendy was a go-getter that was always recognized for her professionalism, thoroughness, and enthusiasm. Wendy was passionate about sports and fitness her entire life. She volunteered for BC Games and Canada Games. But the highlight was her volunteer work as a French-speaking driver for the 2010 Olympics. She was so proud of her City and her Country.
Her best days were always those spent at her home on Keat’s Island with her daughters, and then her grandchildren, swimming, boating and beach-combing. Wendy also adored cats especially her Snowy, Lizzie-Betty and Mr. Whittington, and lastly, Veronicat her Jamaican rescue. They were her companions and confidantes.
Wendy was adventurous and fearless. She saw the world and collected many memories and momentos of her travels. In 2017, Wendy put her life in storage, packed up her motorhome, Bluebell, and hit the road with Lizzie-Betty and Mr. Whittington riding shotgun. For 8 months, she travelled through the United States, eventually returning to Canada, reconnecting with relatives in Saskatchewan and Alberta.
Wendy is predeceased by her parents, Melville Austin Keys and Olive Christina Mary Watkins Keys and is survived by her beloved daughters; Jane Lee of Abbotsford, Jennifer Lee (Warren Kim) of Coquitlam, Allison Lee (Doug McKay) of North Carolina, and Meredith Lee Sperling (Jerod) of Abbotsford, her cherished grandchildren; Elizabeth (Lizzie) Kim, Owyn and Maisie Jenkins, and George, August and Mallory McKay. She is also survived by her sister Jill Clark (Gary) of Vernon, her nieces Chelsea (Andre) Cyr and Hayley (Matthew) Harrington and her nephew Scott (Vanessa) Warren, her great nieces and nephews, Wyatt, Hunter and Georgia Cyr, Declan and Finnian Harrington, Sophie and Benjamin Warren. She leaves behind many friends, notably Gail and Manny Madeiros on Sechelt.
No service by request. In lieu of flowers, please honor Wendy’s love of pets and donate to the SPCA Abbotsford Branch at spca.bc.ca.
Condolences can be sent by email to the family at firstname.lastname@example.org
A life well lived is a precious gift
Of hope and strength and grace,
A brighter, better place
It’s filled with moments, sweet and sad
With smiles and sometimes tears,
With friendships formed and good times shared,
And laughter through the years.
A life well-lived is a legacy
Of joy and pride and pleasure,
A living, lasting memory
Our grateful hearts will treasure.