We are saddened to announce that on Thursday January 6, 2022, while surrounded by family, Barbara Ann Walker, our mom, and nana died at Whiston Hospital, Merseyside England at the age of 70 years.
Barbara is survived by her son Andrew Bestland (Robyn); daughter Ashley Newton (Shaun); granddaughter Winifred; brothers Ken Walker and Leslie Walker; sisters Linda Berrie (Roy) and Carol Walker; former husband Raymond Bestland; long-time companion Ray; numerous brothers and sisters-in-law, nieces cousins and friends; mountains of unfinished knitting and a bungalow full of things that need sorting. Thanks mom.
She was predeceased in life by her parents Leslie and Sybil Walker and brother Michael Walker.
Born on April 19, 1951 in Liverpool, Mom soon found growing up at the centre of Beatle-mania a bit dull so she set her sights on somewhere more exciting. She replied to a help wanted ad featuring a picture of the sparkling lakes and snowcapped mountains of Banff, Canada. Fortunately for our dad, she ended up in Brunkild, Manitoba.
Our mom said she always believed dreams would come true. She must have come to this realization while employed at the Brunkild Hotel. After Barbara left her tenure as a housekeeper, the hotel was forced to close. It closed over forty years after she left, but we don’t think it was a coincidence.
Mom enjoyed scalding cups of tea, especially on scalding summer days and commenting on other people’s children. Although legally blind in one eye, she could spot a child that needed “their ears pinning back” a mile away. Mom never missed a mass or Coronation Street and held both in equal regard.
One could say Mom knew her way around the kitchen. Her baked spaghetti and chewy pork chops were family favourites. We will always appreciate her steadfast commitment to protecting her family from food born illnesses by ensuring everything was thoroughly cooked. Very thoroughly.
Mom always came through when it mattered most such as during Christmas in 1984 when she defeated all the other moms to claim the last Optimus Prime transformer toy for her son.
Eventually Mom ran out of patience for cold winters and missed her extended family so she returned with Ashley to England.
All joking and “taking the mick” aside, Mom was an amazing caregiver when we were ill and a wonderful support when we were feeling down. She will always be remembered for her warm heart and wonderful sense of humour. She remained close with us even while she lived in England and every visit with her was a fun and warm reunion. We will certainly miss the very funny and very unique woman we were able to call mom. We can hear her now… “don’t be soft”.
And on that note, much like the dinners she served, Mom will be cremated, but only at the conclusion of the most Catholic service we can muster across the pond for her. Mom had a clever wit and a British stiff upper lip. We know she will be equally mortified and entertained by this memorial. We can already hear her talking to us from Heaven.. “The cheek!”
Requiem Mass will be celebrated at St Aloysius Roman Catholic Church, Huyton, England on Friday January 28, 2022 at 10:30 a.m., followed by committal at Springwood Crematorium, Liverpool, England.
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