Muriel Beryl O’Sullivan (nee Catlow) was born on May 29, 1933 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan to parents Williamina ‘Ina’ and Harry Catlow. Beryl met Peter Frederick O’Sullivan while attending UBC. They married in West Vancouver in 1957. After the wedding they moved to Ontario, where Peter worked for Westinghouse and Beryl worked as a homemaker and operated a small hat making business. Daughter Anne and son John were both born there.
In early 1961 they returned to the west coast, living first with her parents in North Vancouver before finding a house in the Marpole area. In 1962 they moved to Richmond where son Kevin was born. After more than a decade the family moved to Aldergrove, then on to Edmonton in 1980’s where Kevin attended High School.
Beryl, with assistance from Peter and the children, built and ran several Daycare Centres during her nearly 40-year career. Blundell Daycare in Richmond, Apple Lane Daycare in Abbotsford, Merritt Daycare in Merritt, and Mayfield Daycare in Edmonton. Beryl was a qualified preschool teacher and early childhood educator before such a thing existed and participated in the creation and development of the BC Preschool Teachers Association (BCPSTA) and, to a lesser extent, Early Childhood Educators of BC (ECEBC).
When husband Peter passed in 2001, Beryl sold their Edmonton home and moved to Eaglecrest in Qualicum Beach. She also purchased a small cabana on the sea in Deep Bay, a location where the family made great vacation memories. This was her happy place and she spent many an hour on the deck Anne built, watching the sea and visiting with her neighbours. In 2014 Beryl sold her home in Qualicum Beach and her happy place in Deep Bay and down-sized into a little condo at Craig Court in Parksville.
During her retirement Beryl turned her considerable energies to a life-long dream of writing children’s books. The adventures of Haley and Herbie consumed her for years. Self-published, Beryl spent many hours writing and re-writing her beloved books. Famous broadcaster and friend, John Barton, illustrated the little books and daughter Anne edited them.
Beryl enjoyed a busy and varied social life in the Oceanside area. Many great friends, much wine and games, road trips, cruises, theatre and almost anything else that interested her. Active in Qbana and, for a while, Newcomers, Beryl brought a spark of cheer and cheeky wit to many a gathering.
Beryl is survived by children Anne (Parksville), John (Thailand), and Kevin (Vancouver); grandchildren Jessica (Toronto), Kellea (Yellowknife), Sean (Vancouver), Jordan (Medicine Hat), Regan (Medicine Hat), Sophie (Medicine Hat), Lolita (Thailand); and a large circle of friends in Parksville, Qualicum Beach, and beyond.
Beryl was 86 years 8 months old at the time of her passing.
Celebration of Life will be held at The Bayside Resort, 240 Dogwood Street in Parksville, on March 29, 2020 from 2 – 4 pm. Beryl’s friends are invited to bring their memories to share and bid her a fond farewell.
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