DOROTHY MARY ATKINSON

DOROTHY MARY ATKINSON

Dorothy Mary Atkinson

May 11, 1923 – September 22, 2016

Dorothy was born in North Burnaby, the fourth child born to Alice Amelia (nee Lowry) born in Leeds, Quebec and Percy Mallett, born in Bodmin, England.

Dorothy is predeceased by brothers Arthur (in 1915), Percival (in 1971) and Alan (in 2006) as well as her parents in 1952 and 1955. In October 2012, the love of her life, husband Mac Atkinson, died.

Dorothy attended school in North Burnaby through Grade 12. After graduation, she worked at BC Telephone in Vancouver and later at BC Electric on Hastings Street in Vancouver where she and Mac met. Just prior to Dorothy’s marriage in 1949, the company decided that they would continue to employ married women. Dorothy also took singing lessons and got a degree in 1948. She gave a performance on CBC around this time. She loved her years with her singing teacher Nancy Paisley Benn and her years acting with Theatre Under the Stars in Stanley Park. She attended UBC for a year where she joined in the theatre productions.

The Atkinson family lived in North Vancouver until 1965 when they moved to Nanaimo following Mac gaining employment there. Dorothy joined the Nanaimo Symphony Society in her first year in Nanaimo as well as Brechin United Church where she was a member of the choir until June 2015. Later she was a member of the Nanaimo Family History Society and the Nanaimo Ballroom Club with Mac. Dorothy and Mac supported the Vancouver Island Symphony and the local theatre groups. Dorothy always followed opera, whether on the radio or live. She had season tickets for the Vancouver opera for years and for the Victoria opera in latter years. Dorothy and Mac went on two opera tours to the Metropolitan Opera in New York. Dorothy taught piano lessons for over 20 years. She was proud of her students, some of whom are known in the Nanaimo music community today.

Dorothy and Mac loved to socialize. They kept in touch with old friends and made new ones in each stage of their lives. Dorothy and Mac played bridge and travelled extensively. Dorothy thoroughly enjoyed trying to speak other languages and took great delight in meeting people all over the world. Dorothy and Mac were always knowledgeable about current affairs and took a great interest in politics. Dorothy often wrote letters to the editor.

Dorothy loved her family. Her daughter and her granddaughters will always remember her as their best supporter and someone to count on for a positive word and a hug. She would always have a kind word for people. She would say that a smile she gave someone might be the only one they had all day.

Dorothy slowly deteriorated after Mac died. She lived in her home until she was hospitalized after a fall in 2015. She moved to Kiwanis Lodge in April 2016 where she died. She had been saying for several years that it was time to be ‘up with Mac’ and now she is.

Dorothy is survived by her daughter Pam, her son in law Allan Brown, her granddaughters Cydney Shapiro (Jordan), Cayley Brown, and Caroline Brown as well as her great grandchildren Braxton and Chloe. She was very fond of her nephew Ed and her nieces Ethel and Phyllis.

A celebration of life will be held Sunday October 16th, 2016 at Brechin United Church, 1998 Estevan Road, Nanaimo, BC at 3pm. A reception will follow. Arrangements by First Memorial Funeral Services.


Your condolences will be approved within one business day. You will need a valid Facebook account. Please email us if you have any questions.