Gladys Backus

Obituary of Gladys Mae Backus

Gladys Mae Backus, long-time resident of the Clayhurst and Cherry Point areas, passed away on Saturday, November 22, 2014 in Fort St. John at the age of 84 years. Gladys was born in Pouce Coupe, British Columbia on December 5, 1929 and was the 4th eldest in her family. Gladys was raised in Rolla until 1931 when her family moved to Clayhurst. She attended school in Clayhurst, Rolla and Dawson Creek. After her schooling she worked in Dawson Creek, Vancouver and at the Toad River Lodge, Mile 422 on the Alaska Highway, which was owned at the time by sister Marge and brother-in-law Dennis Callison. These were important years of her life and she spoke of them often. Gladys said that there were two things she didn't want to occur, marry a farmer and live north of the Peace River. In 1951 Gladys married Leonard Backus of Cherry Point, Alberta and both occurrences ensued, all with happiness and love. Len and Gladys started a mixed farming operation of hogs, cattle and grain, continuously expanding and improving their farming operation throughout the years. Her first child, Brian was born in 1954. And later, daughter Glenys was born in 1956. Gladys was dedicated and devoted, always there to help and to lend a hand. Brian referred to her as having "mighty little feet and hands"; it was amazing what she could accomplish. Gladys loved the farm and was always enthusiastic about family, friends and the community. As a volunteer of the local All Saints Anglican Church for many years, Gladys made sure the church was always ready; the fire lit the night before to warm the church for Sunday morning, the pastors and missionaries looked after during their stay, always offering an adequate spread of home cooked meals. For many years she played the organ, helping set the ambience along with all those songs and hymns. Gladys had a love for music. She accompanied Leonard on numerous occasions, playing for dances and many social engagements. A piano and an Omnichord were her tools of the trade. She had an old time rhythmic style, having an ability to improvise by chording to anything in any key; never complicated but simply clever. She played an integral part in building the fundamentals on which the family is based on today. Her hard work and determination was always evident. She led by example in conducting herself as a true and honest individual, conveying friendship, loyalty and ethics; all attributes that one couldn't help but respect. Gladys was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother. She loved her grandchildren and great grandchildren; always interested and wanting to interact. Family was happiness. We spent many hours on the farm together. When times were busy, the weather prime and downtime not an option, her "Meals on Wheels" brought the kitchen to us. Large family gatherings at her house were memorable and plentiful, always diverse with her cooking and baking. Grandma's molasses cookies to Farrell are still the best of all! Grandma, we will never forget you and your spirit will remain with us all, casting your presence wherever we go. I'm sure you're up there right now, already into a few bars of song with Grandpa. For us the song has ended, but the melody lingers on… Gladys is predeceased by her parents, William and Rosalie Clay and siblings Gertrude, Marjorie, Tommy, Allan and her husband Leonard. She is survived by siblings Ken and Jean, son Brian (Marlene), daughter Glenys (Bill), grandsons Farrell (Belinda), Brett (Kari), Wade (Jennifer), Kyle (Lanessa), Lane (Sandra), and great grandchildren Riley, Madison, Cohen, Kenzie, Emily, Kasey and Aubree. A Funeral Service was held on Saturday, November 29, 2014 at 1:00 pm from Reynars Funeral Chapel. Pauline Haycock officiated. Interment will be at a later date. For friends so wishing, donations may be made in memory of Gladys to the Alzheimer Society of British Columbia, 300-828 West 8th Avenue, Vancouver, B.C. V5Z 1E2. Very Respectfully Reynars Funeral Home & Crematorium

Funeral Service

1:00 pm
Saturday, November 29, 2014
Reynars Funeral Home and Crematorium
1300 102nd Avenue
Dawson Creek, British Columbia, Canada
Celebrant Pauline Haycock officiated. Interment will be at a later date.
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