Dorothy Jean Roberts passed away March 9, 2004 at the age of 65 after a lengthy fight with cancer.
Dorothy was born in Mayo, Yukon on March 10, 1938. She has one sister, Norma Barlow, and was predeceased by her father, Reg Millar in January 1990, and her mother, Viola Millar, in January 2001.
She spent her early years living in Mayo, staying there until the mines shut down.
Their family boarded up their home and moved to Lulu Island. Here she attended General Currie Elementary School.
During the summer of 1948 the family came north for a summer vacation to John and Mia Lagerquist’s in McLeese Lake.
They liked the area so much that the following year they packed up and moved to the Cariboo where Dorothy’s parents managed Richmond Farms in Soda Creek. Here she attended Soda Creek School while helping out on the ranch.
She drove tractors, rode the range at round up, pitched hay in the summers, picked and sorted potatoes for export as well as house chores, Cooking for the farm crew, doing laundry for the bunk house, and helping with canning in the fall.
For high school Dorothy attended in Williams Lake where she met a couple of her lifelong friends Luke Erlandson and Jeannie Robertson. She would stay in town at the dorm during the week and return back to the ranch on the weekends. It was in soda Creek that Dorothy would meet and marry Duncan Roberts. They were married on August 21, 1954 in Kamloops. The family was started right away. Irene was born in 1955, Barbara in 1956, Elida in 1957, Donna in 1960 and Noreen in 1964.
In the early years Dunc and Dorothy lived at the Netherlands camp in Macalister, then over to the west side of the river, then it was back to a home on the ranch. They spent a year in town where Dunc and Dorothy managed the Williams Lake Motel and Trailer Park now known as Caesars Inn.
In 1962 the family moved to McLeese Lake where Dorothy spent time raising her five girls. She would teach them to knit, cook, sew and of course there was 4-H meetings, sports events, then running her girls to their part-time jobs.
Dorothy loved to cook for her family.
There was always homemade bread, fresh buns, doughnuts and pies.
Her girls had never bought bread or butter until after they left home. If there was a birthday for anyone in the family she would bake a big black forest cake, using a whole bottle of Kirsch to make sure everyone had lots of fun. She would plan birthday parties, anniversaries, family reunions, and any other event worthy of a family celebration.
During the 60s and 70s Dorothy cooked at the McLeese Lake Resort and McLennan’s 24-hour station in McLeese Lake, then at Woolworth’s in town.
Then in 1979 after her girls left on their own she began her Tupperware career. She was a distributor for almost 20 years, until her ordeal with cancer started.
Dorothy had many hobbies including travelling, dancing, bowling, snowmobiling, card playing and fishing. She was a bit of a gypsy and would be on one trip while planning the next.
She would travel to all the kids and grandchildren’s sports events.
She may be at a hockey tournament in Mackenzie, then one in Williams Lake, then off to Alberta to watch the grandson’s play there.
In the summer there were baseball tournaments, drag racing events, stock car races and horse shoe pitching events.
She loved to be around her family and was always there to cheer you on or offer her support and encouragement.
A personal passion of Dorothy’s was her bowling. Dorothy and her best friend Shirley Hopkins bowled for years.
After Duncan retired she got him hooked on bowling as well. She would travel to tournaments across the province and make it to the winter games.
When the cancer took over and she couldn’t play she would still travel with her team to cheer them on.
Dorothy loved to travel. She made trips to Hawaii, cruises with her sister Norma to the Bahamas and Mexico, family trips to the Shuswap every summer and touring her home land, the Yukon, twice.
She was grateful to travel back to the Yukon last summer with her family.
Her health was poor but this trip was special to her, as she knew it would be the last one with her family.
Then there was her fishing. This always excited her. She was competitive in nature so she would always try the hardest, and fish the longest so she could get the biggest, always having to have photos taken to prove her victory.
Dorothy will be missed by her family. She is survived by Irene (Marcel) Rochefort, Barbara (Jay) Lane, Elida (Gary) Darling, Donna (Wes) Sturgeon, Noreen (Jack) Edwards. One sister, Norma Barlow, 13 grandchildren, six great-grandchildren, many nieces and nephews and her loving partner of almost 50 years, Duncan Roberts.
Dorothy was a compassionate person feeling everyone around her’s pain or joy.
She was always there to lift your spirits up or congratulate you on your victories.
She was not judgmental and celebrated life’s major accomplishments as much as the minor ones.
She believed life’s simplest pleasures are remembered the longest.
Her life was a role model for all those who knew her and she will be sadly missed by all those who knew her.