It is with profound sadness that the family of Burton Charles Eldridge announces that Burt left us June 27, 2021 a few days before his 85th birthday at Lionsgate hospital in North Vancouver, BC. Burt leaves to grieve, his loving wife Margaret (Smith), his daughter Joanne and son-in-law Tom MacDonald, his granddaughters, Annalise and Claire , all of North Vancouver, as well as his son John, and daughter-in-law Dianne Eldridge and grandchildren Charles and Danielle all of Houston Texas. Burt is also survived by his step-grandson, Cameron MacDonald of Calgary.
Burt was born in Ohio, Nova Scotia July 1, 1936 and was the only son of Charles Tooker and Eva Pauline Pulsifer Eldridge. His mother Pauline died from cancer when he was seven years old. His father subsequently married Annis Madeline Madden.
Burt grew up in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, fishing and lobstering on the East Coast. His hobbies also included hunting, stamp collecting, and watching sports. Burt's first full time job was as a teller at the Royal Bank. Burt enjoyed banking but decided he wanted to become a pilot. He was traveling on a train to attend flight school with the Canadian Armed Forces when he received word that his father had died. He returned to Yarmouth and subsequently resumed his interest in finance/accounting by leaving for New Brunswick to acquire a Bachelor of Commerce from Mount Allison University in Sackville. He then completed his Chartered Accountant Designation at McGill University and articled with the CA firm Riddlestead Graham and Hutchison in Montreal, the city where he met his future wife, Margaret.
Margaret and Burt married on July 11, 1964, and moved to Edmonton, Alberta to settle and raise their two children. Burt worked at Consumer and Corporate Affairs with the Federal government and then the Alberta Government. Burt was a chief investigative auditor testifying in the Code Inquiry into the Principal Group Ltd.. He testified in court for many days regarding his work uncovering and alerting officials to neglect and mismanagement. Burt retired from the Alberta Government and for a few years taught Accounting at the nearby Hobbema Reserve.
In 1998, Burt’s cross Canada tour finished on the west coast, in Vancouver where he worked for the Real Estate Council of BC as a PST Auditor until his declining health made it necessary for him to retire permanently. Burt enjoyed his work as a CA and had always taken on private clients to provide professional assistance and advice. In his retirement, Burt enjoyed gardening, building things and spending time with his grandchildren.
In his last years, Burt suffered from a degenerative neurological condition that greatly affected his mobility. He put up a heroic fight for more than a year following a fall at home June 9, 2020 that left him with a fractured neck and a bilateral brain bleed. He was in hospital from June 9th, 2020 to March 10, 2021 when he was discharged and admitted to Evergreen House Care Home where he, due to their inadequate care, began to rapidly decline physically and cognitively.
Burt believed in the value of hard work and living a productive life. He applied his financial skills to his personal life, avoiding waste and discovering efficient solutions to any challenge he faced. Burt would have still been working had his declining health not become so serious.
Burt’s passion was his family. He loved us all deeply. He was a kind and gentle man and was always available for us when we needed him. He will be greatly missed by us all forever.
The family would like to express our sincere appreciation to Dr. Hannah Surgenor GP, Dr. Paul Sugar GP, Dr. John Crawford, GP, and Dr. Fingland (ICU), and Hospital Chaplain Andreas Rebane, for their support and advice to us. We are also grateful for the care and compassion showed to Burt and the family on June 27, 2021, by the wonderful Lionsgate emergency room day and night staff, the social worker, Wynnae Seldon and the doctor on duty, Dr. Stringer.
We would also like to thank the nurses Perlita Jaunita, and Edmund for the compassion shown towards Burt and the family while he was in care at Evergreen House. This compassion was a rare commodity found in Evergreen House.
In lieu of flowers please consider donations to Veteran’s Affairs Canada, Lionsgate Hospital, VETS or the Poppy Fund. Please consider lobbying the government to reform Long Term Care in BC.