April 18, 1921 – June 3, 2019
Muriel Ruth Charnell, nee Van Gorder, born April 18, 1921, passed away peacefully in her sleep on June 3rd, 2019. She will be greatly missed by her 5 children: Van, Christopher, Catherine, Constance and Richard as well as their families and friends. Ruth was born in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan and after the untimely death of her police officer father, when she was 4 years old, she moved to Winnipeg with her mother Jessica and her sister Julia. Ruth’s aunts, Muriel and Dorothy assisted Jessica in raising Ruth and Julia. Eventually they moved to Point Grey in Vancouver where Ruth finished school. She worked for the Royal Canadian Navy in the Admiral’s office during WWII. After the war she married William Arthur Charnell, also from Saskatchewan. The family lived in Port Alberni for 5 years before Arthur reentered the RCAF as an aerial photographer. His postings took the family to Ottawa, Cold Lake and Edmonton, Alberta. When Arthur retired from the Air Force they moved to Langley, BC. Ruth worked for the Langley School Board as a resource librarian and later as a secretary to the Superintendent. During this time she travelled extensively, visiting England, Peru, Trinidad and Mexico. She retired to Nanaimo where she made many friends and was known for her sense of humour and adventure as well as her artistic nature. She taught Tai Chi and took up painting. She won many prizes for her paintings and sold her work internationally. She enjoyed hiking around New Castle Island, Piper’s Lagoon and Neck Point as well as Linley Park. She continued traveling during her time in Nanaimo, visiting family and friends who were spread around the world. Ruth’s life was spent doing what she loved almost right up until her death at the age of 98. Her final month was spent at Trillium Lodge in Parksville, BC where she was very well cared for.
The family would like to thank the entire staff of Trillium Lodge for their attentive care and Kerstin at First Memorial.
First Memorial Funeral Services