It is with great sadness that we announce our mother, Betty MacArthur (Mitchell), of Fairview, Alta., passed away peacefully on Dec. 29 after a short illness. She was 91. Betty lived a long, vibrant and fun life full of travel, family, friends and her St. Helen's church family.
Betty was born in Edmonton on Nov. 2, 1931. Her family farm is now part of north Edmonton. After high school, she took Home Economics at the then-Vermilion School of Agriculture and a year of Home Economics at the University of Alberta. After graduation, she spent a year studying dietetics at the Royal Jubilee Hospital in Victoria. Betty learned to dance while at Vermilion, which stood her in good stead when she moved to Berwyn, in Alberta's Peace River country, in 1954 to become the District Home Economist. It was at one of the local dances she met her husband, Dick MacArthur, a farmer from nearby Fairview.
Betty jumped feet first into her new community, serving and volunteering on numerous boards, including many years as a public school trustee. Betty was a committed social democrat, always volunteering and donating to the Alberta NDP.
Betty and Dick always enjoyed travel and took their young family for a five-month trip to New Zealand in 1963 to see Dick's sister, Maude, and the travel continued for years. Travel was always part of their life. They spent time in Europe, Africa, New Zealand, Australia, U.S. South and Central America, but their favourite country was Mexico. For more than 20 years, they spent the winter travelling through Mexico, often on chicken buses to places Betty had researched from her various newsletters. Eventually, they decided San Miguel de Allende was their home away from home.
Betty leaves to mourn her children: John (Desiree) MacArthur and daughters Mary, Anne and Joan MacArthur. Grandchildren Jondalar, Connor, Frances, James, Siobhan, Owen, Alison and Louise. Also left to mourn are her sister-in-law Margaret Mitchell and her nephew William and her niece Leslie.
A celebration of life and interment will be held in Fairview, AB., sometime in the summer.
Those who wish can make donations in her memory to Alberta NDP or The Primate's World Relief and Development Fund.
Care has been entrusted to Peace Valley Funeral Home in Fairview, Alberta. 780-835-3306.
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