Friday, May 24, 2024
May 24, 2024

WELLS, Cherri Sylvia

 Cherri passed away gracefully on Thursday, March 21, 2024, at the age of 87. As per her wishes, she found her final rest in the comfort of her home, surrounded by loved ones. This would not have been possible without the support of Lady Minto Home Care. The family extends heartfelt gratitude to Dr. Woodly for his compassionate care over the years and for all he did to make her final months as peaceful as possible.

Cherri’s journey began on February 22, 1937, in Gray Creek, B.C. She was the beloved daughter of Julia and Thomas Wells. Her mother, Julia, was born in Canora, Saskatchewan, and her family had immigrated from Ukraine to start their lives in Canada. Thomas had immigrated from Norfolk, England, when he was 21 to begin his new life. He ended up in Saskatchewan (Endeavour), working on a farm where he met Julia. They moved to Gray Creek, B.C., and had three children. Sadly, Cherri’s older brother drowned when they were playing in a nearby creek at the age of 6. Cherri also had another brother who died of pneumonia at 1 year old. The sorrow of losing her two brothers was imprinted in her heart. Four years after Cherri was born, she welcomed her sister, Mona, and embraced her role as the older sister.

In 1950, Julia, Thomas, Mona, and Cherri moved to Vancouver. They lived in the West End of Vancouver, and she attended King George High School. At the age of 19, she met her first husband, George Bogdanovich. Shortly after, they were married and moved into the family home in Dunbar where their three children were born, and they lived for 10 years.

Cherri moved to Salt Spring in 1968 with her three young children and started her new life with her second husband, Jerry Nestman. It was a brave and bold move for her to make at that time of her life. Nevertheless, it was a move she would never regret, and it would change her life and her children’s lives forever. The island lifestyle and the friends and neighbors she would get to know over the decades were what kept her on the island for over 56 years. She loved the people, she loved her friends, and that is what made her happiest.

In those early years, the family had a Hobby Farm in the North End, as her love of animals was always at the forefront, whether it was tending to her chickens, goats, and sheep or her many dogs she loved throughout her life. She was an avid reader and was always trying new things, whether it was weaving, pottery, hiking, or her lifelong interest in painting. Gardening was another passion; she loved nature, and this was something she did up to her last days.

But some of her fondest memories surrounded her foray into tennis and the weekly group in which she would play and socialize. The ‘Tennis group’ continued long after they were still able to play tennis and became a regular gathering of longtime island friends. In the end, it was lunch at the Golf Club with those who were still able to make it. These were lifelong friendships that remained strong to the very end.

Cherri was a beacon of positivity and selflessness, always smiling and willing to help where she was needed. She was a strong and independent woman. She was a great listener, and her friends would often confide in her, knowing she was a compassionate and caring person. Most of all, she loved her family. Her love and support for her children were unconditional and unwavering, and at times, that was surely tested. She was a positive voice in their lives and supportive of whatever endeavors they might take on. She will be dearly missed by all.

Cherri is survived by her daughter Cara (Mark) Rogers, sons Brian (Karen) Bogdanovich, and Gary (Carolyn) Bogdanovich, grandchildren Ben, Tara, and Hayden, as well as niece Laura and nephew Arlen. For family and close friends a Celebration of Life will be held May 25th, 2024 on Saltspring Island. For more information please email Rogerthatcb@gmail.com

If you would like to commemorate Cherri’s life, please consider making a donation to the Salt Spring Island Foundation (ssifoundation.ca), or plant some colourful flowers in her memory.

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