The following remembrance of Margaret Murphy was submitted by Shannon Holmes.
Margaret Murphy (nee Marks) was born September 1, 1931, the third child of Peg and Arthur Marks. The family had emigrated from Wales shortly after the birth of their first son, and they settled in Regina Saskatchewan, where a second son was born, followed by Margaret. Arthur Marks joined the RCMP and worked at the training base in Regina.
Margaret loved to dress up, with all the matching jewelry, and early in her life she moved to Toronto to try modeling. But when the Second World War came along, her hopes were dashed. She took a job as a secretary with the military and was posted to Fort Churchill, Manitoba, where she met Eugene Murphy. Within a few short months they were wed, along with their best friends.
Eugene returned from WWII trained as an officer in the tank corps.¬† He was sent to Korea not long after Margaret became pregnant. Following the birth of their son Patrick, Margaret was informed that Eugene was missing in action. For the next six months she stayed with Eugene‚Äôs parents in Saskatchewan, not sure what to do. One day a letter arrived from Eugene, explaining that he was being shipped home from Japan after being blown up in his tank. The army had forgotten to tell her that her husband had been located.
Eugene returned to Canada in 1954 and became a military training officer. With his return came the birth of Shannon and, within two years, the birth of Maureen, who was a ‚Äėblue baby‚Äô and died at the age of four. The family did not really have a permanent home, but travelled from one training camp to another, at times living in railway cars instead of packing and moving from house to house.¬† In 1966 Eugene retired from the army and moved to Victoria, B.C.¬† He had trouble finding work in B.C., so he took a job as a lighthouse keeper on Mary Island in the Gulf of Georgia. Margaret hated the lighthouse‚ÄĒnot enough glamour on the rock for her‚ÄĒbut she endured the three years, teaching the children by correspondence and waiting for visitors.
Eugene retired from the lighthouse and took a job with BC Ferries on the Sunshine Coast. The family lived in Sechelt, and later bought a house on School Road in Gibsons. Margaret still longed to be in the city, as the rural life never did appeal to her, and after Shannon graduated from high school she convinced Eugene to move to Victoria. Margaret loved living in the city, where they stayed until they bought a trailer and moved to Sooke River Road.
Eugene died on January 11. 1991. Margaret stayed on in Sooke for many years, making friends with everyone she met. After suffering the loss of her son Patrick on April 10, 2007, Margaret decided to move to Sointula to be closer to her daughter Shannon. She moved into Harmony Glen, where she met Gloria, Bonnie and Janet, who liked being known as the ‚ÄúHelsinki Angels‚ÄĚ as they roared around the island on their carts and dined out for lunch, letting the locals admire their spunk. But Margaret‚Äôs health began to decline, which greatly impacted her lifestyle, and she seemed to decide that she‚Äôd had enough> On July 4, 2012, she let go.
Margaret will be greatly missed for her laughter, kind words, quick smile and, of course, her dazzling outfits and jewelry. Although we will all miss her, I know she no longer has any pain and can rest in peace.