May 9, 1928 - January 6, 2021
Lois passed away peacefully January 6, 2021 with her family right there beside her. Lois, along with her twin sister Jean, started life 92 years ago and she was a long-time resident of both Vancouver and Bowen Island. She is survived by her children Lorna, Ann (Tom) and Grant, her grandchildren Lukas and Kyle, her twin sister Jean and half-sister Maureen Scarborough. Lois was pre-deceased by her son Ian McLaren and her husband Jim.
Lois started life as a very typical debutant, living on McDonald Street with a pony, assorted pheasants, gardeners to look after the property and parents Grant and Gladys Gunn. She had a natural ability to hang upside down from apple trees and was flexible enough to be able to trim her toenails with her teeth. Her energy, curiosity, flexibility and strength served her well as a yoga teacher later in life. Lois developed a love for travel as a young girl by way of long summer trips to the Okanagan and frequent day trips to Bowen Island via Union Steamship boats. Later, she inspired her children and friends to always look around and appreciate nature. “Remember what you see as you may never be here again,” was the mantra her children got used to hearing on trips to Savary Island, Harrison Hot Springs, Bowen Island and the far-off worlds of Disneyland and the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair.
After graduation from UBC, with a science major, Lois and Jim settled down to raising their 4 children on Maple Street in Kerrisdale. Son Ian was lost in 1978 and husband Jim passed away in 1980. The very unique spirit that Lois was soon set off for India to study yoga at an Ashram run by B.K.S Iyengar. She returned to Vancouver as a trained yoga instructor and spent years enlightening student groups, ranging from senior citizens to the blind to youth groups.
In the early 1980s Lois purchased land on Bowen Island and set about designing and building a new house. She thrived on Bowen and took pleasure on being the self-appointed “welcoming committee” for new arrivals to the island. Known to be somewhat mischievous and “quirky” Lois cooked buttermilk pancake breakfasts for seemingly whoever she met, collected giggles in her “giggle jar” during dinner parties and, in her spare time, set about “renovating” local beaches to make them more accessible to users.
When Lois’s health began to decline about 3 years ago she relocated to a care home (where she kept prodding the local population to smile and laugh) but her strength began to waiver. This was hard as Lois always saw herself as being the strong one in any group – walking across Bowen Island, moving tons and tons of rocks and constantly entertaining a stream of friends who loved to come to be with her. We all love her and miss her...