In Memory of





Obituary for Mary Lou Mayrs (Forester)

The world has lost a very special person. It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Mary Lou Mayrs, beloved wife to Charles (Charlie), Mother, Grandmother, Aunt and Friend. Mary died peacefully on November 13, 2023 at the age of 84, surrounded by her loving husband Charlie, and her five children Coreen (Heike), Kathleen, Paul, Andrew (Vally) and Sara (David).

Born in Edmonton, Alberta on Dec 2, 1938, Mary was adopted as an only child by Don & Velma Forester of Toronto, Ontario. The family then lived in Calgary, Alberta for one year until they relocated to Kerrisdale, Vancouver in 1940.

In 1952, 14 year old Mary met fellow 12 year old student Charlie while attending Point Grey Junior High School. It was love at first sight for Charlie, and soon their love affair began. Mary was a whole head taller than Charlie when they met, which was quite the sight at the High School dances which Mary and Charlie have reminisced about often over the years. Both Mary and Charlie then went to Magee High School where their love affair continued. It was a forever wait, but the two sweethearts soon married at Kerrisdale Presbyterian Church on June 3, 1961. By this time, Charlie had done some growing...Mary was no longer a head taller.

Just prior to she and Charlie marrying, Mary started a job at BC Tel while Charlie finished his four years at the Vancouver School of Art. Soon after, Mary fulfilled her dream of being a mother. First came Coreen (1962), Kathleen (1963), and Paul (1964). But that wasn't enough for Mary. She & Charlie adopted Andrew in 1966, and Sara in 1970. Between she and Charlie, they raised their children first in Kerrisdale, and then in 1970, with a desire to be closer to nature, the family moved to the Cypress Park enclave of West Vancouver. There, the children learned to live in the wild, spending all their time on the beach, hiking up and down Cypress Creek, roaming the neighbourhood, barefoot and fancy free.

During these years, Mary followed another dream of hers, that of helping children with learning disabilities, by volunteering at Cypress Park Primary school to be of help in any way she could. This led to a career in Learning Assistance at various schools throughout the community of West Vancouver, where she tutored students one to one for 12 years. Years later, after Mary retired, she was often stopped in the streets by ex-students who would tell her "without you, Mrs Mayrs, I would never have graduated".

On top of this, Mary chaperoned her five children on a North Shore News paper route around the Cypress Park Neighbourhood for many years in order to teach the children a good work ethic, which the children later embraced in their various careers. Mary also ran a small daycare in their home after school hours, which further satisfied her love of caring for children.

Mary had an incredible skill for creating a warm and cozy home environment. Mary's dining room table was a gathering place for family, friends and neighbours. She and Charlie hosted many wonderful dinner parties, often creating outrageous themes for the events. Mary lovingly supported Charlie in his many long distance running events, from Fun Runs to Marathons. This led to wonderful summer events spent with friends, such as camping trips to Tuc-el-Nuit Lake and Ucluelet. Mary and Charlie and the kids also enjoyed their annual camping trips to Penticton and Keremeos where the children would spend days exploring the Similkameen River and the beaches of Okanagan Lake. The family also cherished their excursions to the Sechelt cottage that Mary's parents eventually retired to in the 1970's.

Once Mary and Charlie retired, they spent their winters in Maui at their beloved Maui Kaanapali Villas. There they hosted many family events, including the beautiful wedding of their daughter Sara (David), not to mention many wonderful times with all their friends at MKV over the course of 27 years. They also enjoyed traveling to many other places over the years, including Greece, Spain, France, Ireland, England, Morocco, and road tripping throughout every province in Canada. In later years, Mary and Charlie treasured family gatherings with their grandchildren and the rest of the family on Bowen Island and at Boucherie Beach in West Kelowna.

Mary will always be remembered for her love of music, the louder the better. Her favourite artists span a range of genres, including Pink Floyd, KD Lang, The Doors, Leonard Cohen, Andrea Bocelli, Bob Dylan, Leon Russell, Neil Young, and The Rolling Stones.
Mary loved watching her favourite TV shows, Jeopardy, Seinfeld, Friends, and Wheel of Fortune, and she had a particular affinity for the movie "Pretty Woman", which she watched over and over again. She was a master at Crossword Puzzles, was an avid reader, and was a member of the Community Book Club.

Mary found great joy in her nine grandchildren, Connor, Sarah, Rylee, Veronica, Keagan, Grady, Illimani, Loel, and Blake. She also dearly loved her many nieces and nephews and was a devoted sister-in-law to all of Charlie's siblings and their spouses (Margaret & Bob, Irene, Bill & Nonnie, Frank & Patricia, and David & Mary) who she shared a close relationship with.

In 2005, Mary discovered that she had 4 sisters, Elaine, Gail, Judy, and Marlene, who she came to love dearly. With this came a new extended family, which brought great joy to Mary and her family. This eventually led Mary to become a genealogist. She enjoyed helping many other families around the world find their distant ancestors.

Mary will always be remembered for her style and grace, her infectious laugh, her love for dark chocolate, and her quick wit (she was a master at hurling "hum-dingers"). She was funny, direct, and acted out of love. Mary's multitude of pets over the years enriched her life...there was always room for one more kitten.

Mary Lou Mayrs was a person who cared. She was always kind, and always helpful. She was a person who would laugh at silly jokes, dance to rock music, but most of all, she was a lover to her husband, a leader to her children...and a lovely asset to this troubled world. Mary, Mum, will be forever cherished, and carried in our thoughts and hearts always.

Mary will especially be remembered for her love and devotion to her beloved Charlie. Her love for Charlie knew no bounds and was a marvel to observe.

We would like to extend our gratitude to Mary's home caregivers, Shafeem and Nathalie, who helped care for her during the last year of her life. We would also like to express our heartfelt thanks to the Care Aides, Nurses, and the rest of the Staff and Management at Sunrise of Lynn Valley who provided comfort to Mary and the family in the last two weeks of her life.

Mary Lou Mayrs lost her struggle to Dementia after a long life of loving, caring, and giving.

As per Mary's request, there will be no service. To honour Mary's life, please feel free to make a donation to One to One Literacy Society, a unique Vancouver based children's literacy program which provides free one-to-one tutoring by trained volunteers to elementary school students.