CURELL, Elizabeth McMillan (née Macdonald)
August 12, 1928 — October 27, 2023
Liz “Betty” passed away peacefully with a full moon shining through her window. She is survived by her children David, Jane (Dave), Bob (Bettina), and Brian; her younger brother Robert; sisters-in-law Marge and Zorea; extended family; and fondly known as grandma to Jessica, Calvin, and Kuni.
Liz was the oldest of 5 (Ian, Bev, Glen, Robert) and the only girl. Being the elder of the children, she took an active role in keeping the family under control and continued to have strong and close relationships with her brothers and their families. All of the family was active in sports and Liz excelled in speed skating, swimming, and diving; she also loved baseball so much that her bottom set of teeth had been completely knocked out. In her teens, she began modelling for “Woodward’s” in Edmonton, AB and so began her flair for fashion.
After marriage and having a family in Edmonton, the family of 6 moved to Kelowna, BC in 1962, where Grandad Curell had been living since the early 1900s. Soon after arriving in Kelowna, she began 22 years of volunteer work at the Kelowna Hospital Auxiliary and was the buyer at the KGH Gift shop. In addition to her volunteer work, Liz taught high school charm classes at KSS; organized fashion shows for charities; hosted gala nights to raise funds targeted for a roof on the Parkinson Recreation Pool as well as the KGH Foundation; and she was the marketing director for the 1980 BC Summer Games. During the winter it was weekend “après” ski tailgating at Big White that kept her socially connected, and in the summer she was a keen tennis player at KGCC in singles and mixed doubles.
There was no “free lunch” for Liz. Separated in 1981 at the age of 52, she stepped out of the comfort zone of many peers and used her flair for fashion, old-fashioned grit, and determination to open a swimsuit and cruise wear boutique in Kelowna. Desiring to be closer to her family, she relocated the business to downtown Vancouver in 1987, and it soon became the “go to” retailer of swimwear in Western Canada. After retirement at 90, she moved back to Kelowna and rekindled friendships and stories at the “Missionwood” Seniors Resort.
In the early 1980s, Liz began travelling to different Club Meds. She quickly became an expert on Club Meds and over the years had stayed at 15 Club Meds throughout Mexico and the Caribbean. She cruised Southeast Asia, the Mediterranean, South America and walked the beaches of Rio de Janeiro, the Algarve, and enthusiastically visited the homeland of her parents, Scotland.
Liz embraced a night out, especially to big name theatrical and musical venues, and she knew how to throw a party. She was always up-to-date with current affairs, and she wasn’t afraid to offer her opinion on just about anything.
The family would like to thank the stroke ward staff at Kelowna General Hospital for their compassion and guidance over the past 3 weeks and ensuring that each evening she was tucked in for a restful night.
Liz had a full life; loving family, community involvement, career in business, excellent at entertaining and an adventurous traveller. She will be remembered as “The Amazing Liz” and, will be joining many family members and friends in her next life.
There will be a private family service. As per her wishes, a gathering to celebrate the life of Liz will take place FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 2023, between 1:00-3:00 PM, at the KELOWNA GOLF AND COUNTRY CLUB: 1297 Glenmore Drive, Kelowna, BC. If anyone chooses to donate in memory of Liz, please do so to the KGH Foundation.
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The service for CURELL, Elizabeth McMillan (née Macdonald) is scheduled for FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 2023, between 1:00-3:00 PM. Below you will find the map for the service location and the contact information should you have any questions.