Frances Ruth Burnaby Koch (nee Sparrowe)

May 3, 1925 – Mar 25, 2018
Frances Ruth Burnaby Koch (nee Sparrowe) died peacefully at North Shore Hospice just shy of her 93rd birthday. Until recently she was able to live her life independently and happily at home as the matriarch of our family.

Fran was a strong and gentle soul who loved and supported both family and friends with her unique blend of common sense and a fun-loving sense of humour. Her long life provided continuity and stability for our family, and she inspired us all to live our lives simply and openly, allowing our true spirits to shine through.  

Frances is survived by sons Roger, Philip (Sarina) and Gary (Kuniyo) Koch; grandchildren Rowan, Jasmine, Jessica, Harrison and Yuri Koch; nephews Douglas Trounce and Jeff Pander; niece Sandra Minihan; and family in Alberta, P.E.I, England, Australia, New Zealand, and the USA,.

She was predeceased by her husband David Koch, sister Marion Trounce, brother-in-law Fred Trounce, sister-in-law Mary Pander and parents Frank Burnaby and Ruth (Campbell) Sparrowe. 

Born in West Vancouver, Frances grew up in Vancouver during the challenging years of the Great Depression. As a young woman, she enjoyed drawing and painting, was active in her church, was employed as a clerk at the Hudson’s Bay and worked as a hairdresser. She met Dave, a returned RCAF veteran, while he was studying engineering at UBC. They married in Vancouver in 1952 and moved to Port Alberni where their children were born. They eventually moved to North Vancouver and bought the house in which Fran was to live for the next 54 years.

She was a devoted wife and busy mom who supported her three boys through their hockey and baseball years and into adulthood. Fran and her sister successfully ran a women’s clothing store on Dunbar Street for several years. Throughout her life she enjoyed expressing herself through art and for a time was a member of the West Vancouver Sketch Club. In later years, Frances enjoyed her long-standing membership in a North Vancouver TOPS group.

A Life Celebration will held on Friday, April 27/18, 2 PM at Boal Chapel 1505 Lillooet Rd. North Vancouver, B.C.

Donations in Fran’s memory may be made to the North Shore Hospice or a charity of your choice.


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