Ivy Doris Varndell


It is with a deep sense of sorrow and loss our family announces the passing of Ivy Doris Varndell on March 30, 2015 in her 96th year.

Ivy is survived by sons Michael Kennedy, [Della] of Edmonton, Canada, John Varndell [Debbie] of London, U.K. and Christopher Varndell of Tasmania, Australia. She will also be remembered by grandchildren Mark, [Michele] Kennedy, Lara Kennedy, Thomas and Eleanor Varndell and Alexis Varndell and great grandchildren Kieran and Amanda Kennedy. She also leaves to cherish her memory former daughter -in-law Henny Koelewijn of Tasmania, sister-in – law Joan Hackett and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins in the UK. Ivy is predeceased by husbands Malcolm Kennedy, Jack Varndell and William Pollard, as well as her brother Bill and sister Audrey.

Ivy was born to Ivy and Thomas Hackett on September 21, 1919 in Portsmouth, England, the eldest of three. She was a bright and popular student and reading continued to be one of her lifelong passions along with playing the piano. As a young working woman, Ivy received high marks with the Department of Defense enabling her to perform the duties of Payroll Clerk in the naval dockyards in Portsmouth. Many years later she could still come within pennies when toting up her weekly grocery bill!

Ivy married Chief Petty Officer Malcolm Akers Kennedy on January 20, 1940 as WWII was raging. Her first son, Michael Hugh, arrived January 08, 1941 amid the chaos of air raids and bombings. However, as with many war time marriages, their union ended in divorce in March 1947.
Despite the dissolution of her marriage, Ivy often spoke of the war years as some of the happier times of her life. She and her friends would attend the Empress Ballroom and do their best to have a laugh and share some smiles with the young servicemen who may or may not be there next time to twirl them ‘round the dance floor.

On May 10, 1947 she married the love of her life John Thomas Varndell. Her second son John Patrick arrived October 12, 1948 and Christopher followed on December 08, 1951. Ivy continued working in a clerical / book keeping capacity until June 1954 when it was decided to forge a new future. The entire family migrated to Australia. After a month at sea, they joined many other migrant families at Berkeley Hostel, just outside of Wollongong, NSW. Jack was employed at the Port Kembla steelworks and at the age of 15, Michael joined him as an electrical apprentice. The boys enjoyed the sun and beach life while Ivy bravely bore the heat and battled the mozzies!
After 12 years, Ivy, Jack, John and Chris returned to Portsmouth. Michael met and married Alma then moved back to her hometown of Edmonton in Canada in 1964. John attended university and Chris was trained as a police officer. Her boys had grown up. To help with finances, Ivy opened up their home to provide room and board for students.

Ivy and Jack then moved to Edmonton, Alberta in the early 1970’s and shared Canadian life with Michael, Alma and their children Mark and Lara. John remained in England and two more grandchildren came along in Thomas and Eleanor. Christopher caught the travel bug from his Mum and eventually settled in Tasmania. He and Henny provided another grandchild, Alexis.
Ivy and Jack enjoyed many happy times in Canada and continued to visit relatives back in England.

Jack’s passing in 1982 was hard on Ivy. Ivy met William Linden Pollard on a visit to England, and the Cornishman accompanied her back to Edmonton where they were married. W.L. passed away in May 2001, leaving Ivy a widow once more.

Ivy remained on her own in her little apartment at PleasantView Place until failing health in February 2013 led her to reside at the Good Samaritan Extended Care Centre.

Ivy was a feisty, courageous woman who often brought a laugh or a tear to all she met.

The family wishes to thank Dr Adam Parrish for his many years of caring for Mum. We also acknowledge all the staff at the Good Samaritan Southgate for their devotion.
Mum was never one for a fuss, so as per her wishes, cremation has taken place and a private service may be held at a later date.

She has found peace at last and has been reunited with those who have gone before.

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john reid

I am truly sorry to hear of the death of your mum.I can remember her from when I used to visit your house.It is very sad when when both parents pass away. Julie & I send our sympathy to you as we know what it is like to lose both parents. we will write you a personal email soon. Ian & Julie Reid

Pamela Beaumont

Ivy, known to us as Doris, loved Aunt to Pamela and ‘sister’ to Joan. We will miss your wonderful letters that have entertained us over the years, kept us in touch with everyone and closed the miles between us. Reunited with Uncle Jack and happy now. RIP. Our thoughts are with your sons and their families at this very sad time. With love Joan, Pam and Mike. Also nephews David and John xx

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