Phyllis Dunbar (Cant) Pidcock was born on February 14, 1924 in Dundee Scotland. She passed away peacefully on February 28, 2021 with her family at her side in the Nanaimo General Hospital shortly after celebrating her 97th birthday on Valentine’s Day. She was predeceased by her husband of 70 years, Thomas Harvey Pidcock in 2016.
Phyllis is survived by her children, Brian, of Vancouver, Bonnie (Brian) Chappell of Rossland and Leslie of Calgary; her seven grandchildren; Tiffany (Aaron) Withington, Philippa (Greg Harder) Chappell, Sarah and Valerie Rose (Rosie) Pidcock, Alexandra, Jennifer and Andrew (Alexandra Annibale) Gibson and her four great-grandchildren; Emiri, Leilani and Boden Harder, and Kiri Withington.
Phyllis grew up in Scotland with 6 brothers and sisters. During WWII she was engaged in war work inspecting jerry cans while spending her time off with her best friend Dot Coles at the ice skating arena. It’s there that she met a handsome young NCO in the RCAF who was on leave from his duties in Iceland. Tom and Phyllis were married on Aug 11, 1945 in Paignton, England just before Tom was demobbed and transported back to Canada to Courtenay, BC. Phyllis joined him a year later, as one of the many war-brides who came to Canada.
Tom and Phyl moved from Courtenay to Vancouver while Tom attended UBC and then to Port Alberni where he was a teacher and principal and Phyl was a homemaker, raising their three children. She volunteered in those years, and was involved in the Girl Guide movement as a Brown Owl and eventually District Commissioner. She was also President of the PTA at a number of schools that her children attended. In 1968, following their move to Prince George, she resumed her formal education as a “mature” student in the newly formed College of New Caledonia. After completing teacher training, she taught at College Heights Elementary for 17 years until her retirement in 1984. She was an enthusiastic but stern teacher who believed that each of her students could (and would!) reach their potential if the bar was set high enough and they were given enough encouragement.
Tom and Phyl were dedicated square dancers. They joined their first club in 1952 and continued to dance, often 2 or 3 times a week. They travelled to many national and international square dance gatherings and spent more than 60 years di-si-do-ing, making friends, keeping fit and having fun.
Phyl was inordinately proud of her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. She always maintained that they were her legacy. She was never happier than when attending another of her children or grandchildren’s graduations or performances. She took pride in each new degree received, or performance given, or race completed and she surrounded herself with many photos of these, her greatest accomplishments.
In 1989, she and Tom built their dream home on the waterfront in Parksville, BC where they had 25 very happy years together. Tom and Phyl moved into the Gardens at Qualicum Beach in 2015 and after Tom passed away, she continued to live independently in her own condominium. Tom and Phyl are now together again.
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