Mary Birch

Obituary of Mary Clara Birch

January 19, 1924 - Ryley, Alberta

August 26, 2023 - Calgary, Alberta


Mary Birch (nee Pepper) passed away peacefully at Agapé Hospice on Saturday, August 26, 2023, in Calgary, AB.


 She was born in Ryley, AB, on January 19, 1924. Mary grew up on the family farm north of Ryley but travelled to Quebec to stay with family while she worked in a war plant folding parachutes and making flares for the war effort. Upon returning to Ryley, she married Gerry Birch. They spent over 62 years together, primarily in Calgary, before Gerry passed away in 2008. Painting was a lifelong source of joy; she spent many years volunteering at the Parkdale Community Association and the Nifty-Fifties Club where she created and sold numerous works.


Mary was predeceased by her parents Edith and Lester Pepper; her sister Jean Stelter, and brothers Jerry and Allan Pepper. She will be lovingly remembered by her son, Murray Birch (wife Rebecca Sullivan) of Calgary, as well as by many nieces and nephews.


A private family graveside service will take place in October.  In lieu of flowers, a donation to a charity of your choice is preferred. Memories and condolences may be shared with the family here.


We are thankful for the exemplary care Mary received at Chartwell Colonel Belcher, particularly during COVID, which was a tough time for seniors. Finally, we are especially grateful for the support of Gretel Pepper during mom’s final days in providing comfort, care, and assurance.


In living memory of Mary Birch, a tree will be planted in the Ann & Sandy Cross Conservation Area by McInnis & Holloway Funeral Homes, Chapel of the Bells, 2720 Centre Street North, Calgary, AB T2E 2V6, Telephone: 403-243-8200.

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