January 9, 1939 – August 26, 2022
In loving memory ~
It is with loving hearts that we acknowledge the peaceful passing of our beautiful Mom, Gladys Sheila McCluskey (nee Reid) on August 26, 2022, at the Overlander Care Facility in Kamloops. Mom was born at the Rossland Hospital on January 9, 1939, to Stephen and Millie Reid.
Mom grew up in Rossland and Warfield. She learned to make the most delicious spaghetti sauce from Mrs. Ventura, who babysat Mom and her brother Stevie, during the 2nd World War as Mom’s Dad was away fighting overseas and Mom’s Mom was working at Cominco as part of the war effort. Mom was also known for her amazing cabbage rolls, or garbage rolls as they were affectionately known.
The original Reid family from Scotland was very musical and that love of music was passed down from Mom’s parents, to Mom, her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. We grew up listening to Patsy Cline, Connie Francis, Petula Clarke, Ella Fitzgerald, Hank Williams, Tom Jones, Englebert Humperdink, Elvis Presley, Brenda Lee, Nancy Sinatra, Nat King Cole and everyone in between, as well as many tunes from the old Country. Mom had an incredible voice, she loved to sing and hosted her own radio music show at the age of 16.
In the late 1960s we moved up north beside the Fulton Lake Fish Hatchery near the shores of the beautiful Babine Lake. Our lives were filled with camping, hockey, fishing, skating, curling, hunting, counting fish at the fish fence, swimming with the salmon and trying to stay away from the all of the mosquitos. Mom and Dad loved to have a good time and could they ever dance. Everyone on the dance floor would stop to watch them jive. We only wish we had paid more attention to all those moves.
Mom loved the North and she spent many hours out in the forest or on a random beach on Babine Lake teaching us how to build fairy houses, find her favourite wild flower, the Lady Slipper, chase off bears, moose or whatever other wild life would pass through our yard or camp. Mom loved lilacs and always wanted a lilac tree right by her window so she could enjoy their simple beauty.
Mom had a diverse career. The first part of her work life was taken up by being a full time Mom to her four children. She then worked as a deckhand on the barge that would take workers across the lake to the Granisle Mine. She worked as an assayer at the mine and finally in her 50s, Mom returned to school to become a Care Aide, she had always wanted to be a nurse. When one of the residents asked why she became a Care Aide at her age she responded — “I wanted to check out all of the care homes so that I know where to go when it is my turn.” Mom was an exceptionally kind person and older people were drawn to her kindness. She was a very good listener and had endless patience. Mom always told us that we should be like Thumper from Bambi who said – “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” Mom truly lived by that motto.
Mom was pre-deceased by her parents, Millie and Steve Reid, the love of her life, Allan McCluskey, Sister in Law Grace Reid, and Nephew Rod Reid.
Survived by her brother Steve Reid, children Cliff McCluskey, Tammy McLean (Bob), Lori McCluskey (Jerry), Wendy McCluskey, Grand children – Jaemmy Palacios (Edgar), Lynden Prochner, Ashlynn Bonneteau (Austin) Michaela McLean, Abbey McLean, and great grandchildren, Holden, Stella, Elaena, and Maya and numerous nieces and nephews.
The family would like to acknowledge Mom’s honorary daughter, Shelly Labelle, for all of the love, friendship and care that Shelly gave our Mom over many years. We are forever grateful and we should all hope for such a great friend.
We would also like to thank the Overlander Care Home in Kamloops for their care of our Mom as we all live so far away, they became her family and especially during COVID when we were not able to visit.
Cremation has taken place. A celebration of Mom’s life will be held at a future date.
Mom, we miss your presence in our lives and look forward to when we meet again – with the songs you taught us in our hearts.
The lead singer from the Reid family band is now home.
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