Cherry Blossoms

Icy May Chen See

January 17, 1933 ~ January 29, 2024 (age 91) 91 Years Old

Icy May Chen See Obituary

Our Mom, Icy May, passed away on Monday, January 29, 2024, at 7 p.m., Calgary time. She was living at AgeCare Skypointe, a long-term care facility. We miss her very much, but we know she is now with our dad, her beloved Sydney. They had been married for 68 years.

We knew Mom did not have much time left. She had contracted COVID-19 for the second time just before Christmas, so her doctor told us that the illness had exhausted Mom’s reserves and that it was only a matter of time. Mom rallied at the last moment, so we all began making plans to take turns to visit her.

Although we weren’t able to be with her at the moment she passed, we are very glad that Mom had her caregiver Sharon for company. Sharon took care of our mother just like she would her own mother, bringing her fruit and treats. In addition to Sharon, we are grateful to the staff of Taradale West, Mom’s Skypointe neighborhood, especially the nurses, Noly and Shelley; all the HCAs; and a very special recognition to all her caregivers, Sharon, of course, and Anna, Trisha, and Grace. Anna was a parishioner at St. Luke’s, for that’s how Mom met her. Anna was with Mom the longest, for at least 3 years, decorating Mom’s room for her birthday and holidays, and remembering where Mom liked to put her things. And finally, a special remembrance for Mom’s dining room tablemate, Mary, for her kindness.

We were told that when Mom left Skypointe for the last time, the nurses and HCAs lined the hallway in tribute. It was remarkable, to be sure, because Mom could be both exacting and exasperating. She stood tall for someone who was only four-foot-eleven-inches standing up or three-foot-ten seated in her wheelchair. She had a voice, and she wasn’t afraid to tell anyone off should they dare to presume that her disability defined her; that she was either less of a person or that she had no brain to speak of. To the end, her memory worked just fine, even as her disabilities robbed her of speech as well as her mobility.

Mom had lived a long full life. She had come a long way from Pisgah, Jamaica, where she was born, to Calgary, Canada, where she died. She learned to travel the world, to adjust to Calgary’s extreme winters, and she embraced life as a naturalized Canadian. In Jamaica, she was a wife and mother, and she learned to be a hostess when our father climbed the corporate ladder to success. When our parents were invited to King’s House to meet the Queen Mother, Mom wore a silk cheongsam. It was an extraordinary life. Mom and Dad had 6 children, 12 grandchildren, and 4 great-grandchildren. After Dad passed away in 2020 from COVID-19, the baton passed, and Mom became the matriarch to us all. Among her cherished titles were Tsa Poh (mother’s mother), Ah Poh (father’s mother), and Tai Poh (Great-Grandmother).

Godspeed, Mom. In Jamaica, when we wish someone a good journey, we say,

Walk good, Mom, with love,

JoAnne, MayLynn, Ardis, Glen, Hugo, Fei Min, all our spouses and all our families

In lieu of flowers please donate to the Arthritis Society of Canada at https://arthritis.ca/ specializing in arthritis rehabilitation and education. 

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