Poet, Grammarian, Monarchist, Community Advocate, and Curious Learner Carol Ann “Carolanne” Reynolds passed away peacefully July 14th, 2022, while on vacation with her beloved husband of 40 years, George Pajari.
A proud second-generation Vancouverite, Carolanne was born October 4, 1939. Predeceased by her parents Arthur Reynolds and Anna “Ann” Marie Reynolds née Baumann. After earning a degree in languages and political science at UBC (including time at Carlton and Keio University in Tokyo), she set out to fulfill her lifetime ambition to travel and over the next two decades visited over 100 countries. This included navigating the Mekong in a dugout during the Vietnam War, travelling overland around most of India, translating wine laws in France, and teaching in countries including Australia, South Africa, and the UK.
While paused in Vancouver after her third global circumnavigation, the life-long learner met her husband at a wine appreciation course at UBC. They married in 1982 and shortly after George finished a consulting engagement with the World Bank (IBRD) in Washington, DC, they settled down in beautiful West Vancouver.
World travel had made Carolanne sincerely appreciate Canada, and she became a passionate advocate for her community and heritage in all its forms. She was elected Alderman in 1988, and worked tirelessly to protect her beloved West Vancouver from insensitive development and to preserve the heritage of the community.
After leaving Council, she continued as a dedicated Council watcher, publishing her newsletter, WestVanMatters, for more than 20 years, the last issue being sent out the day before she passed. Always open to innovation and passionate about making information accessible, she set up the first website covering West Vancouver issues well before the District’s.
Her continued community involvement was recognized by a Heritage Award from the District of West Vancouver in 2001 and a second award for Civic Commitment in 2015.
In 2000 she started the West Vancouver RoyalTea-bythe-Sea to commemorate the Queen Mother’s 100th birthday and to advocate for the monarchy. The 23rd annual RoyalTea will be held August 13 in Dundarave Park. Visit RoyalTea.ca for details.
Her tireless community involvement included countless committees, boards, foundations and societies making her a well known community force. So much so, her husband would jokingly introduce himself as “Mr. Carolanne Reynolds”.
Her interest in language in general, and correct usage in particular, was renowned. Misplaced or missing apostrophes were Carolanne Reynolds’s bête noire. She felt language misuse was a disservice to newcomers learning English and felt civil servants and journalists in particular should set a good example. Many received notes gently reminding them about points of grammar and pronunciation. When Lynn Truss’s book on grammar (Eats, Shoots & Leaves) was published, the Vancouver Sun returned the favour by asking Carolanne to write the paper’s book review.
A talented poet, her haiku have been published both in Canada and Japan. One of her last poems was written shortly before her death:
Enjoy, cherish ev’ryday
No one ever knows
which will be the last
A memorial and celebration of life will be held at 2pm, September 9th at St. Stephen’s in West Vancouver. Donations to the charity of your choice would be appreciated in lieu of flowers.