Posted: October 17th, 2014

April 16, 1918 ~ October 12, 2014

Mrs. Renée Verla Bird (nee Gale), beloved wife of the late Mr. William Bird, and our dear aunt and sister, passed away peacefully at the Medicine Hat Regional Hospital on Sunday, October 12, 2014, at the age of 96 years.  Renée was born in Winnipeg Manitoba, on April 16, 1918, to Hannah and Duane Gale.  She began life on the family farm near Melfort, SK., and in 1927, the Gale family moved to Medicine Hat.  Renée attended Connaught School and Alexandra High School.  In 1935-36 she attended the Calgary Normal School and achieved her Teachers’ certificate.  She taught her first year near Schuler in a one room school house with 14 children in grades one through eight; the following year in the Grayburn area near Fort Walsh for two years;  then a position near Seven Persons for two years.  Renée met her future husband, William (Bill) Bird when the RAF came to Medicine Hat with the 34 S.F.T.S. in 1941. They married in April of 1942, and moved to England in 1944, when Bill was posted back there. Renée continued as a substitute teacher near Bill’s family home in Stoke on Kent.  They returned to Medicine Hat in 1946, and then in 1962, the couple moved to Vancouver to be near her mother and father. In 1967, they bought a home on Bowen Island near the ocean.  Bill passed away in 1983, and Renée returned to the work force as a Manager of the Bowen Island Seniors Residence.  She was very involved with the community; President of the Ladies Auxiliary of the Royal Canadian Legion, church organist, church secretary, bridge club and general organizer. She was an avid reader, enjoyed traveling with her friends to Austrailia, Alaska, England, Greece, Israel, Morocco and California as well as many treasured family visits, celebrating weddings and births.  Renée was a dedicated knitter who made sweaters for all the kids.  In 2005, Renée retired again, moving back to Medicine Hat to be near her family and took up residence at Meadowlands and finally Sunnyside Nursing Home.  She was pre-deceased by her mother (1977) and father (1965) and two brothers and their wives, Fred (Mary), Jim (Shirley) and sister-in-law, Anna Gale and niece Renée Jones.  Renée is survived by her beloved brother, Roy and her nine nephews and nieces and their spouses and families: Douglas (Pat), Debbie (Dale), David Jones, Tom, Liz, Marilyn (Brian), David (Wendy), Stan (Linda), Brian (Teresa) throughout British Columbia and Alberta.  A Celebration of Renée’s life will be held at the Wurfel Auditorium, South Country Village, 1720 Bell Street S.W., Medicine Hat, on Saturday,?October 18, 2014 at 1:00 P.M. with Pastor Bob Findley officiating.  Interment will take place at Hillside Cemetery. Condolences may be expressed by visiting  Memorial donations in Renée’s name may be made directly to Alzheimer Society of Alberta, 401D – 3 Street S.E., Medicine Hat, Alberta  T1A 0G8.   Honoured to serve the family is Cook Southland Funeral Chapel, 901 – 13th Street S.W. Medicine Hat, Alberta T1A 4V4 Phone 403-527-6455

Leave a Condolence