Hayes, Elizabeth “Betty” Amelia
With great sadness we announce the passing of Betty Hayes after her courageous battle with cancer surrounded by her family on Thursday, November 16th, 2023 in her 80th year. Devoted wife to Michael Hayes of Washago, Ont. Loving Mother to Christopher, Biz and Andrew Hayes of Orillia, Ont. Beloved Gramma to Mallarie, Nakita, Heidi, Michael, Eiley and Levon. Adored G.G. of Jamie. Dear daughter of the late Marie and Stan Hawke. Cherished sister of Barbara Dunlop, Myrna Welsh and Dorothy Ekley. Sadly missed by many nieces, nephews, friends and her former students.
Betty graduated from a one-room schoolhouse in Moonstone, then ODCVI & Park St. Collegiate in Orillia, then Ontario’s Teachers College in Toronto, and later achieved her BA at Wilfred Laurier University.
Music was one of the joys of Betty’s life. Betty created and implemented a music curriculum which she then taught at the Catholic Elementary Schools in Orillia. Her passion and love for her teaching was felt by the hundreds and hundreds of her students long after her retirement in 1998, proven by a lifetime of former students waving her down calling out “Mrs. Hayes! Mrs. Hayes!” She was always able to recall her former student’s name, share a story and parted with a smile and a hug. Her impact on her students was palpable, with some pursuing music as a career themselves. Betty was very adept in writing and composing numerous musical skits and productions; her contributions and participation within the musical community was vast and varied.
Betty’s activities included golf, tennis, curling, the Arts and bridge. Her bridge foursome, who played together for almost 60 years, was a particularly important group of women to her. She was also a long-standing member of the Orillia Y’s Menettes.
One of Betty’s greatest pleasures was spending time with her family. She was the life of every family gathering, the leader of every singsong and an instigator of wholesome shenanigans.
Trips abroad and all throughout North America with a variety of terrific travelling companions were some of the highlights of Betty’s life. For the last decades of her life, Betty happily escaped the cold Canadian winters in Florida where the sun and community kept her heart young and her soul happy.
To know Betty was to love Betty. She cherished all the relationships and connections she made throughout her life, and her love for all of those she knew, will live on within us. Her zest for life, positive attitude and internal light made the world a much better and brighter place.
Cremation has taken place and a Celebration of Life will be held next spring, her favourite season, at a date to be determined so we may all celebrate together the extraordinary life, of an even more extraordinary woman. If desired, donations can be made through Mundell’s Funeral Home which will be allocated to local musical organizations to honour Betty’s legacy and her commitment to music within her community.
Message of condolence are welcomed at www.mundellfuneralhome.com