June 8, 2018
Shirley Ruth Thomson of Cobble Hill was promoted to glory on June 8, 2018. She leaves behind her husband Dave, son Kenneth, grandsons John and David and their mother Nanci, sister Julia, sister-in-law Jean, brother-in-law Alan and many nieces, nephews and friends. She is predeceased by her son Robert and brother Wilfred Yurgensen.
Shirley was born in Kisuma, Kenya to Salvation Army missionary officers Wilfred and Gertrude Yurgensen. She was the middle child to older brother Wilfred and sister Julia. As a young teen she and her family returned to Canada for a few years then headed back to Cape Town, South Africa where she finished her education. She gained employment with the Union Castle Line and was eventually transferred to England before returning to Victoria to live with her grandparents and work for BCTel. In 1958 she met her best friend and love of her life navy-man Dave Thomson. They married in 1960 and had two sons Robert and Kenneth.
Shirley was active in the Victoria Salvation Army Corps as a songster, timbrelist and Brownie leader. In 1967 the family moved to a small farm in Cobble Hill before setting out to Ottawa for two years. Upon returning Shirley began her love of shepherding with her sons Robbie and Kenny when they joined the 4H Sheep Club. She loved birthing lambs and helping the boys prepare for fairs. The barn became a place for her and Dave to sip tea and tend the flock.
Shirley joined the Cobble Hill Farmer’s Institute where she became president and lead the members in placing a new foundation under the hall.
Her keen interest in community and protecting the rural lifestyle led her to organizing a group of residents to hand out anti-incorporation sheets when a referendum was proposed to incorporate Cobble Hill, Mill Bay and Shawnigan Lake. Their efforts lead to the defeat of the proposal.
Although Shirley spent the last eight years of her life in Cerwydden Care Home (Duncan) she remained in good spirits to the end. The family would like to thank all her caregivers for their professionalism and kind devotion that ensured her last years were cheerful and enjoyable.
A memorial service will be held on July 7, 2018 at 1:30 pm in the Cobble Hill Farmers’ Institute Hall, Watson Avenue, Cobble Hill.
In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Salvation Army.