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40440 Tantalus Rd
Box 99
Garibaldi Highlands, BC V0N 1T0
Phone: 604-898-5121
Fax: 604-898-4460
Astrid Andersen

Astrid Andersen

Tuesday, September 1st, 1936 Wednesday, February 17th, 2021

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Obituary for Astrid Andersen (Christoffersen)

(Sept. 1, 1936 – Feb. 17, 2021)

On February 17, long time Squamish resident Astrid Andersen (nee Christoffersen) passed away peacefully and surrounded by family, after a short illness, in her 85th year.

Astrid was born in rural Denmark in 1936. She was predeceased by her husband Roy (Rolf Olaf) in 1979.

Astrid and Roy both came to Canada in the 1950s, each for adventure and opportunity. After work stints in Sweden, Switzerland and in London, England where she learned English going to the cinema, Astrid emigrated to Canada in 1957. She arrived at Pier 21 in Halifax NS with a letter of employment from an Alberta family in need of a nanny, “preferably a Danish girl.”

Astrid and Roy, who had met on the MS Bergensfjord Atlantic passenger liner, started a family in Hinton AB before moving to Squamish in 1961. The rebuilt Woodfibre pulp mill had a job for skilled tradesman Roy, and Squamish had a longer growing season for avid gardener Astrid.

They built their home on Hospital Hill, with Astrid in charge of what was to be judged Best Garden in Squamish by 1969. Over the next decades, in between tending family (as a single parent after her husband’s passing) and garden, and later employment at the local hospital, community-minded Astrid wrote many letters to the editor and attended and spoke at many public meetings.

She actively supported each of her three free spirit sons in numerous, diverse projects.

Astrid loved picnics and camping and, in later years, independent backpack travel off the beaten path – in Latin America, Yukon, Quebec, Southern Europe, SE Asia and Australia. She (proudly) never learned to use a computer, clipped and saved many articles out of the newspapers, and read many books – mostly about the history of her adopted country.

Astrid always looked forward to weekly international folk dance nights, Tuesday hiking group excursions, helping out with Hospital Auxiliary friends, and volunteering for Community Christmas Care and at the annual Loggers Sports days.

Her always good mood, happy laughter and great hospitality will be missed.

She is survived by sons Eric, Glen (Marina) and Thor (Bec), her precious granddaughter Eve-Ruby, and a large extended family in Denmark and Norway.

Due to Covid-19 a celebration of Astrid Andersen’s life will be postponed to a later date.

The family is sincerely thankful to caregivers at Lions Gate Hospital and North Shore Hospice for their kindness. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to either Squamish General Hospital Auxiliary or the Heart & Stroke Foundation.

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Bec Andersen

A Poem by John Hansen posted by Ros Boardman, who recalls Astrid's Love of Eagles.

Mighty, mighty eagle
Ruler of the sky,
Give me your powerful wings
So that I may fly.

Soar above the turmoil,
Fly above the strife.
Give me your eagle eyes
So I can look at life.

Whirl and dive within a storm,
Mocking nature's power.
Give me your fearlessness
So nothing makes me cower.

Soaring to a higher realm
No other bird can reach.
Give me your tranquility
So God's word I can teach.

Rise up on the breath of God,
Close to Heaven's door.
Teach me how to harness power
So I can stop all war.
Comment | Posted at 11:27pm via Condolence

Bec Andersen

Astrid Andersen 1/9/36-17/2/21
he things I remember about Astrid :
* The sound of her quick footsteps in the kitchen in the morning preparing for breakfast when we were visiting.
* The numerous notes on the kitchen counter of things to do.
* Her picnics with boiled eggs potato salad, home-made Ryebread and raspberry cordial.
* The way she would take a short breath midsentence or as a response to something you were saying.
* Her delivery of home-made jams in Mason jars when we lived in Vancouver, dressed in her blue rain jacket and driving her Volvo.
* The masking tape notes attached to said Mason jars.
* Her red clogs and stockings
* She told me once she painted her toenails in the summer to hide the dirt from the garden.
* Her accent and sound of her voice especially when she was calling out to Eric during our day trip to Newcastle Island in 2014.
* Her generosity
* Her fairness to her sons and her ability to maintain the connection between them.
* Her open-mindedness
* Her prolific garden
* Her strength of character right down to the very end.
I’m proud to have been connected to her as a family member – I love the Danish heritage she has brought to my life and my child’s life. We have now to make new traditions to remember her by, today we boil red cabbage make rice pudding and attend a choral performance at Saint Stevens Cathedral, it is titled Requiem For The Living. It is a prayer or call for rest to all of mankind.
* She loved also to sing.
My one and only Danish mother-in-law, a void we feel now , that until we visit Squamish BC again we will not truly have accepted. ASTRID
Bec Andersen
Comment | Posted at 11:15pm via Condolence

Thor Andersen

Eulogy for Astrid
Remembering someone you hold dear after their exit from this world maps out a new pathway of emotions intertwined with memories that will never fade and stand ready to be re-born.

With Astrid, my mother, now gone from our lives, we will follow that journey remembering the things about her that made her who she was and still remain in our hearts and minds. Her devotion to raising our family required a strong backbone of heritage that she obtained from her traditional farming roots. And that foundation that kept us all healthy and happy came from countless hours and years of toiling in the garden growing her flowers, fruit and vegetables.

It was thick in her blood, etched in her Danish DNA this cycle of regrowth and regeneration that came and went with passing seasons. And the resulting fruits of her knowledge were so evident in the aromas of her kitchen with a lexicon of international cuisine wafting, its roots plucked direct from her compost-rich soils like an intravenous infusion of love. She was the pacha mama, the earth mother who watched over the vast of array of garden disciples that bowed down to her every demand.

Her food creations hold such a strong tantalizing memories, her sweet treasures ranging from to shortbread cookies garnished with cinnamon and crisco-fried donut balls to dessertified rødgrød med fløde and æbleskiver pancakes. Her leek soup and corn bread on a cold night was always welcome. And, of course, who could forget the red cabbage, caramelised potatoes and rice pudding during the festive season. Too many to name but the energy and the warmth that percolated in our bellies was a sign that we were loved and deep deep down that was all that mattered in our world.

Mum’s laugh and good humour and keen desire for knowledge and expression were passed down and inherited by all. And her strength to endure even through those last dreadful weeks was just an example of the true fighter who she was.
Her last supper eluded her as did that final sip of her home-made wine. But she did drink in copious amounts of life that propelled her forward as a mother, as a human being. And with that in our minds we acknowledge that her soul will linger in our hearts and memories in perpetude.

Though you may rest in peace, our love for you will remain eternal.

Comment | Posted at 07:44am via Condolence

Trevor Harris

Eric Glen, Thor and family. I was so sorry to hear of the sudden passing of your Mother, Astrid. As you know, I spent my first few years in Squamish in your home as a boarder.
In those days, there was little accommodation in Squamish for beginning teachers, and your home was indeed a lucky find. I have many memories of your Mom’s amazing cooking, her energy and good humor, as well as enjoyment of good conversation. One memory that stands out for me was how seriously your Mom viewed her Canadian citizenship. I remember her studying for that citizenship exam. I remember her providing me with details about Canadian history that even as a recent university graduate, I would find myself on shakey ground. Needless to say, she passed her test with flying colours, and always maintained a commitment to her adopted country and to her local community here in Squamish. I know that you will feel her loss hugely. My hope is that your memories of a wonderful Mother, Grandmother and Friend will sustain you through this time of sadness.
From Trevor Harris, and also, Steve, Lori and Chris
Comment | Posted at 03:43pm via Condolence

Billie Hildering

Boy Will I miss her presence and cheerfulness at Folk dancing it is with great sadness that I heard of Astrid's passing My heartfelt condolences to Astrid's son's and family Much Love to all Billie Hildering
Comment | Posted at 12:57am via Condolence

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