July 13, 1934 - October 30, 2023
In loving memory ~
Shirley Moon passed away suddenly on October 30, 2023, in Nelson, BC, surrounded by her family. We express our gratitude for the exceptional care provided by the ER staff at Kootenay Lake Hospital, particularly Dr. McBride, and nurses Andrew, Emmet, and Lori, for their kind, thoughtful, and skilled care and guidance.
Born in Dublin, Ireland on July 13, 1934, Shirley made Nelson her home in 2014, finding solace here after the loss of her husband, Albert Moon. She loved Nelson for its "everyday living". Having previously visited many times and with her very social nature and gift for singing, Shirley strengthened her connections with the Nelson United Church by joining the choir and church committees. This welcoming congregation became the center of her community. She volunteered with Friends of the Library and with Nelson Grans to Grans, enjoying both the friendships she made and the opportunity to give back to her community.
Affectionately called "the Blue Streak" by her children, Shirley was an avid walker, tennis player, and golfer well into her mid-70s. With her fiercely competitive nature, she always enjoyed a game of Scrabble (which she usually won). In her mid-80s, rain or shine, she could be seen roaming with her walker about town to attend her favourite Chair Yoga class at the seniors' center.
Music was Shirley's lifelong passion. She was an accomplished soprano soloist, singing in several prestigious choirs such as The CBC Singers and West Van United Church Choir in Vancouver, and The Third Day Chorale in Dublin. As a listener and a performer, she found purpose and joy in her music and the friendships made with her fellow choristers.
Survived by her sister, Roberta, in Vienna, Shirley cherished her parents' business and musical influence, despite their early passing. Her mother sang and played the piano, and her father owned a chain of movie cinemas in Dublin during the first flowering of the "talkies". She and Roberta have remained lifelong friends, speaking weekly on the phone and visiting together in Dublin. They shared many early memories and laughed uproariously together at jokes only they understood.
Shirley met her first husband, John Fearing (d. 2006), in England, with whom she had three children (Judith, Jane, and Stephen). John was a talented organist and choir director, and her father-in-law, Norman, was an accomplished bass soloist. The three of them performed together in London choirs and were very active in Vancouver's choral community.
In her mid-30s, Shirley married her second husband, "Billy" BloodSmyth, a Dublin solicitor and well-loved "character", whom she became reacquainted with while attending her brother, Rodney's wedding in Dublin. They returned to Ireland by train and boat with three school-age children in tow. Billy, previously a bachelor, was delighted, if not a bit bewildered at times, to have an instant family. On the train trip, he approached a scarlet-uniformed Mountie to say, "arrest this woman, she has stolen my heart". He was loving, kind, very funny and brought a lot of light to the family.
Circumstances changed, and in her late 30s, Shirley met her beloved Al Moon. The two soon became close companions, and a long and loving marriage followed. Blending their two families, Shirley's three children were joined by Al's Richard and Alexandra. They went on many adventures together throughout the Emerald Isle, always with Hetty, the much-loved poodle. During that time, Shirley developed her business career as a participant, then leader, and eventually co-owner for the franchise of Weight Watchers Ireland. She enjoyed travelling throughout the country as a WW leader, and her co-owners became lifelong friends.
Family was very important to Shirley. She responded promptly to letters and emails and delighted in visits from her six grandchildren, Laura, Rosalie, and Patrick Metcalfe (Judith), Suzannah and Liam Raudaschul (Jane), Orla Fearing (Stephen). She enjoyed hearing about the whereabouts of Alex's children and grandchildren (Dublin) and Richard's daughter, Darcy (Portland). Shirley was thrilled to welcome two great-grandchildren, Rowan and Shea (Patrick), into her life in recent years.
Shirley's legacy of music, community involvement, and vibrant spirit will continue to inspire. Shirley Moon's celebration of life will be held at 1 p.m. on November 19 at Nelson United Church. A reception lunch will follow. In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests donations to Nelson Grans to Grans.