BARNES (nee Cornish), Elaine Norah

1930 – 2022
Edmonton AB

Never one to turn down an opportunity to bring her friends and family together, Elaine Barnes will be remembered for her big heart, boundless energy, open door, and incredible devotion to her family and friends.

Elaine Norah Barnes was born in Edmonton on August 15th, 1930 to Wilfred and Eileen Cornish. She was the eldest of three, a big sister to two brothers, David and Patrick. Her childhood was spent growing up in Garneau, eventually attending the University of Alberta where she earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Home Economics. Later, after meeting and marrying her husband, David Barnes, she moved to the north side of the river into the home where they would raise their eight children. It was in this home that Elaine opened her doors to family, friends, neighbours, students, unwed mothers, … everyone was always welcome.

At a young age, Elaine loved finding adventure in the outdoors and continued this passion through her whole life.

Through the 1950’s and 1960’s, as Elaine and Dave’s family grew to eight children they skied and camped, hiked and traveled across North America. Despite this busy home life Elaine still found time to continue her education to Graduate school, volunteer for the YWCA and Planned Parenthood, establish a Kitchen Design company, and teach part-time at the University. Once her youngest was in school, Elaine started her career as a personal finance consultant which allowed her to work in a field, she was passionate about and also gave her the flexibility for her other passion which was travel. After her divorce in 1978, she spent her midlife traveling the globe, often with her friends and family. She loved the arts her whole life and during this time she enjoyed making pottery and began to collect beautiful pieces of art. Her garden was her masterpiece, particularly at her last home in Holyrood.

Survived by her children: Susan, Keith (Francia), Karen (Dean), Judith, Robert, Neil (Penny), Sally (Chris); brothers: David and Patrick, and many nieces and nephews; pre-deceased by daughter Patricia (Ken). Elaine was also a doting Nana to her 18 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.

A Celebration of Life for Elaine Barnes will be held in Edmonton on Saturday, November 5th at 1:30 p.m. at the Royal Glenora Club (11160 River Valley Road).

A second Celebration of Life service in Victoria will be held Saturday, November 12th at 1:30 p.m. at St. Anne’s Academy and Auditorium (835 Humboldt Street).

Serenity Funeral Service
North Central Chapel

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Tribute wall - a place to share your memories and condolences


Apologies to the family. Somehow, I typed in Maureen rather than Elaine – not sure where my head was going, but that should have never happened.


My sincere condolences to Maureen’s family & friends. As one of her UofA privileged students, I have fond memories of the lessons she shared, the enthusiasm she inspired, and the ongoing love of life which surrounded her. What a privilege to have been exposed to this woman, even for only one semester of my education. She was one-of-a-kind!

Lorraine + Mitch

What a wonderful picture of one of the loveliest people we have had the privilege of meeting. We share in your sadness but we also share in the joy you will have in telling ‘Elaine’ stories for years and years to come! She will live on in her family and friends.

V. Keith Barbutza

I had the opportunity to work with Elaine on a television series called Net Worth, back in the 1980s, at ACCESS TV, while I was a TV Producer there.

I’ll always remember Elaine as someone who was kind, patient, and very knowledgeable about financial matters. Through the power of television she was able to touch many lives. I know that even after almost 40 years, I recall her touching mine.

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