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MARY ELIZABETH BAYER, C.M., M.A., LL.D.  Obituary pic


Born: Feb 10, 1925

Date of Passing: Sep 07, 2005

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MARY ELIZABETH BAYER, C.M., M.A., LL.D. February 10, 1925 - September 7, 2005 A sixth generation descendant of Red River settlers, Mary Elizabeth Bayer was the daughter of Anne Farquharson Patteson and Granville Lovejoy Bayer. Her grandfather, Thomas Edward Patteson, was a member of the North West Mounted Police, great-grandfather the Hon. E.H.G.G. Hay was the first leader of the opposition in Manitoba's first Legislature, and great-great-grandfather Hugh Gibson was with the Hudson's Bay Company at York Factory. Mary Liz was one of two children; her beloved brother Edward was killed in action with the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1944. Alberta-born Mary Liz was raised and educated in Manitoba. An outstanding Canadian, she was a champion of great causes, a poet, patriot, public servant, communicator, educator, advocate, moderator, and volunteer leader. In Manitoba she was Executive Director of the Volunteer Bureau and of the Manitoba Centennial Corporation, founding Executive Director of the Manitoba Arts Council, founding Chair of Heritage Winnipeg, founding member of the Assembly of Arts Administrators, pioneered adult daytime television programming and served as the provincial government's first woman Assistant Deputy Minister. Nationally, Mary Liz brought her wisdom, humour, tact and deep understanding of Canadians to her roles as National President of Heritage Canada, member of the National Executive of the Girl Guides of Canada, member of Charlottetown's Confederation Centre for the Arts and the Canadian Commission for UNESCO. She also served with great distinction on the Selection Committees for both the Rhodes Scholarships and the Royal Bank Award. After retiring to Victoria in 1980, Mary Liz, with unflagging creativity and energy, continued to guide and advise, as Chair of the Greater Victoria Library Board, founding member of the Greater Victoria Arts Commission, Executive member of the Provincial Capital Commission, member of the Honorary Board of the Victoria Foundation, Chair of the British Columbia Heritage Society, and founding Chair of the Province-wide arts and heritage advocacy group, Culture Acts Now. Her numerous awards include an Honorary LL.D. from the University of Winnipeg, the University of Manitoba Distinguished Alumni Award, Girl Guides of Canada Merit Award and the Canadian Centennial Medal. In 1994 she was appointed a Member of the Order of Canada and in 2000 she was named an Honorary Citizen of Victoria. She was the 2004 recipient of the Woman of Distinction Award for Lifetime Achievement and in June 2005 received the British Columbia Heritage Award. Mary Liz's greatest talent was in inspiring and motivating others. She believed in God, honour, justice, noblesse oblige, encouraging youth and a future for our lovely planet. She will be deeply missed by her friend of fifty-five years and coworker for good causes, Anne DuMoulin, cousins Mary McMullen, David (Erika) McMullen and Louise (Jim) Kagan, many other family members, and thousands of friends throughout Canada and around the world. Heartfelt appreciation is extended to loving friends, and the many dedicated medical and health care practitioners, who assisted Mary Liz in her long and most courageous battle with cancer. A memorial service will be held at St. Andrew's Anglican Church, 374 River Rd., St. Andrews on Tuesday, September 27 at 2:00 p.m. Reception following at 141 Wellington Cres., Winnipeg. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Winnipeg Foundation for the Mary Elizabeth Bayer Award for Excellence, 1350-1 Lombard Pl., R3B 0X3.

As published in the Winnipeg Free Press on Sep 15, 2005

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