Flora, a resident of Vernon and Eagle Bay, passed away at age 93. Born in Kamloops (nee Blackbourn), the last of 5 children, she was the grandchild of Nicola’s early white settlers who built and ran the first road house on the site of the present day Quilchena Hotel. She graduated from Sprott Shaw Business School in 1938 and began work at Beatty Bros. in Vernon where she met her future husband Carl. She enthusiastically took up skiing, climbing up Silver Star Mountain on homemade skis long before there was a road. Flora and Carl were married in 1941, spending their honeymoon at Heather Lodge on Mount Revelstoke (climbing on skis from town). In 2005 they were honoured when a 1938 photo of them was used in the mural project honouring Vernon’s skiing history.
Flora was a pioneer member of the Silver Star Ski Club and Sovereign Lake Nordic Club. While in her sixties, she was a seven time Masters World Cup medalist and was a regular competitor in other races including the Cariboo Marathon and Reino Keski-Salmi Loppett. An older age group was created for her twice as she continued to ski into her 80’s – an inspiration to the skiing community and her family.
She loved her family, music, gardening and spending time at the family cabin at Eagle Bay.
Flora is survived by her 5 children: Anne (Don) Champion of Salmon Arm, Carol (Allan) Lamb of Prince George, Don (Kathy) Wylie of Vernon, Eleanor (Tom) Marshall of Deep Creek, and Shannon Wylie (Robbie Short) of Vernon. Also 9 grandchildren: Warren (Lyn) Staff of Salmon Arm, Samara Staff of Kamloops, Rob Staff of Fort McMurray, Dr. Eric Lamb (Kirsten Ketilson) of Saskatoon, Heather Lamb of Prince George, Jamie Marshall of North Vancouver, Alysson Marshall and Matt Wylie of Canmore, Beth Wylie of Vernon and great- grandchildren Ethan Staff and Aurora Lamb. She was predeceased by her husband Carl in 2008 and great-granddaughter Sarah Jane Staff in 2003.
A celebration of life will be held on January 16 at 11 am at the Pleasant Valley Funeral Home, 4303 Pleasant Valley Road, Vernon. Online condolences may be sent to email@example.com In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Vernon Hospice House, 3506 27th Ave, Vernon, B.C.V1T 1S4.