Mary Elizabeth Ronback

RONBACK, Mary Elizabeth died after a brief illness on March 13, 2014 at St. Paul's Hospital Vancouver at the age of 77. She is survived by her loving husband, Jim, her daughters Kirsti, Lisa and Michelle and their husbands Stefan, Alex and Marc and her grandchildren Nathaniel, Theo, Sasha and Zoe. She will be sorely missed as well by her many beloved relatives and dear friends. She is predeceased by her parents and her siblings Verne, Paul and her twin, Jeannie. Mary was born January 18, 1937 in St. John, New Brunswick to Cory Verne and Elizabeth Waldorf. She grew up in Lakeside and Halifax, Nova Scotia. She graduated from the University of Toronto School of Physical and Occupational Therapy in 1958 and married Jim Ronback in 1960 in Toronto. She worked in physical therapy in Toronto, Kitchener, Pointe Claire, Que., and Ottawa/ Gatineau and later volunteered at the Canadian Museum of Nature in Ottawa. Mary pursued opportunities in vertebrate paleontology with the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto and aided raptor rehabilitation and taught classes with O.W.L. in Delta, BC. She was a dedicated member of the Delta Naturalists and edited their newsletter for many years. She was an avid gardener, naturalist, gourmet cook and bonne vivante par excellence. Mary will be remembered for her abundant positive energy, her wonderful sense of humour, her joyful nature and, of course, her dinner parties. She was known for her nearly constant smile, spontaneously breaking into song and being an incredible fount of lyrics and trivia. Her beautiful spirit still glows. To quote Monty Python, she would "always look on the bright side of life." We could not have asked for a better wife or mother and are so very grateful to have had her in our lives. We would like to thank the dedicated doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists and staff at the Delta Hospital and St. Paul's Hospital for their caring and conscientious efforts. A memorial service to celebrate her life will be held on Sunday, March 23, 2014 at 2pm at the Unitarian Church of Vancouver, 949 West 49th Avenue, Vancouver, BC. A reception and music will follow the service. In lieu of flowers, donations to The Canadian Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation in her name would be appreciated (

Published in The Delta Optimist from Mar. 19 to Mar. 20, 2014