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Holly Sparks

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Holly Sparks

March 9, 1943 - December 27, 2018


It is with great sorrow the family of Holly Sparks announce her passing after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease. She passed peacefully in Willingdon Creek Village with friends at her side. Holly “crossed over” and has become “One” with the “Divine Light” on December 27, 2018, at the age of 75 years. She leaves behind her friend, soul mate and husband Wayne Harbo after over 40 years. She was the loving mother of her two sons: Brett Sparks (Rita) and granddaughter Norah, and Bryce (Diana); and her blended family, Reidun (Dan) and grandchildren Tyler and Emma; and Spencer (Charlene) with grandchildren Maya and Owen. Also Jason (Linda) and their children Colby and Jayden. Holly is survived by her twin brother Willard Van Horne (Susan) and her two nieces Kiersten (David) and their son August; and, Heidi (David) and their two children Clementine and Violet. Also her brother-in-law, Rick (Heather) and their three children Jennifer, Amy and Michael. Holly was born in Cleveland, Ohio, on March 9, 1943. She was a 1960 graduate of Hathaway Brown School in Shaker Heights, Ohio, the state’s oldest private girls’ school. She completed her undergraduate schooling at San Francisco State, and was active in the civil rights movement and voter registration for the Mississippi Freedom Party. A “free spirit and adventurer,” she moved to Texada Island in 1972 with her first husband Russ Sparks, where she raised her family and continued her career in education. She was an avid traveler, a counsellor and educator in Powell River high schools, and well known to her students as a caring and trusted advocate, always there for them. Holly retired to her cottage on the beach in 2002. She was a painter, a poet and loved to share her wisdom and memoirs with all. Holly was an avid fitness fan and loved to spend as much time outside as was possible. Even on a wet spring or fall day you would find her in the garden attacking weeds with a zest so overwhelming she would have to be reminded of lunch more than once. She was an accomplished “fisher” and relished the times we were able to get out in the little tin boat and go bottom fishing (size didn’t matter), or prawning, especially when the family came up every summer. She loved aerobics and her comradeship with all her close friends at the complex. As we all know she had a sense of humour and always cheered us up with her captivating smile. She was a people person and listened intently to our every word, and was able to bring sunshine into the darkness when we needed it most. We will miss Holly, one and all. Look up into the sky and you will find a “star” shining a little brighter. Holly’s family gives its heartfelt thanks to Dr. Addison, Dr. Anderson and all of the staff at the Powell River clinic, as well as Powell River General Hospital, Dr. McKeown and Dr. Howard at the Parkinson’s Research Centre at UBC, the Parkinson’s Support Group in Powell River and friends at Rexall Pharmacy. Special thanks to the Powell River Hospice Society, who helped us through this difficult transition and became our friends. To all our personal friends and family who visited often and took Holly out for walks and “mochas,” she so enjoyed this. Most of all we sincerely thank Willingdon Creek Village and all its staff, especially House Three, LPNs, caregivers and housekeeping who all made Holly’s stay there as caring and comfortable as possible. As well our warmest regards to all of her fellow residents and families. Memorial contributions may be made to Holly’s Ashram or charity of your own choice. Yasodhara Ashram Box 9, Kootenay Bay, BC, Canada, V0B 1X0.


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From: Stubberfield Funeral Home

Stubberfield Funeral Home Ltd. Staff send our condolences to family and friends.

From: Sharon Stedman
Relation: Friend and work associate

Dear Holly , you were a wonderful teacher and friend!!!❤ I have so many great memories of working with you at Edgehill and you were a caring counsellor for my daughters at Ocean view! Love and Prayers! May you enjoy more Readers Theatre and your Tai Chew on heaven!!!❤
Love and condolences to your family!!!❤❤

From: Stacey Fletcher
Relation: student

Holly was my counselor in high school. She had a huge impact on my life. When all you needed was someone to listen to you; she sat there and just listened. When you needed someone to make you smile – that’s exactly what she did. When you needed someone to help you – she acted. Such a unique and caring soul. I hope she (and her family) know how much her students cared for her.

From: Deb Reim Gauti
Relation: thru Robin's friendship

My sincerest heartfelt condolences to Wayne & Holly’s family. It was always such a pleasure for Robin and I to meet up with you both. Rest in peace !

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