Advent Calendar: Bjarne Bordewick and Mary Park

Bjarne Bordewick

Born 1888, Died 1950, aged 62
Lived in: Lafoten Islands, Norway; Antwerp, Belgium; Grimsby, England; Vancouver, BC, Canada
Married: Mary Dunlop Park
George Robert Bordewick
Henry Norman Bordewick

Bjarne was the eldest son of Henrick and Leonharde Bordewick, born in Norway north of the Arctic circle. When he was young, the fishing industry in their area took a turn for the worse, so his father and one of his father's brothers set out to try to set up business in Europe, hoping to improve their business. Unfortunately, the people in Belgium did not approve of them. Their name had been anglicized, and the Flemish, who were sympathetic to the Dutch during the Boer War, assumed them English and often treated them badly. They didn't stay in Antwerp for long. The family moved to England for a time, I believe, where Bjarne and his brothers received much of the rest of their education, and Bjarne even managed to pass the entrance exams for Cambridge University. Before he could attend, however, the family moved again, this time to Vancouver, where another of Bjarne's uncles had settled. It was in Vancouver where Bjarne would meet his wife Mary, known as May. The two married in 1917, and had two sons, George and Henry, and lived there together until Bjarne was hit by a car and died in 1950.

Mary "May" Dunlop Bordewick nee Park aka Granny

Born 1891, Died 1983, aged 92
Lived in: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, US; Ireland (Belfast, I believe); Vancouver, BC, Canada; Washington, US
Married: Bjarne Bordewick
George Robert Bordewick
Henry Norman Bordewick

May Bordewick was the fifth child born to Robert and Elizabeth Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where she lived for the first ten years or so of her life. In the early 1900s, things became difficult for her family, and her parents moved them all back to Ireland. One of her sisters, moved to Vancouver, BC, Canada a few years later, and most of the family soon followed her there, May included. There she met a young man by the name of Bjarne Bordewick, and in 1917, the two were married. Their son George followed a year later, and a second son, Henry, in 1923. They were active in the community in their church, and were quite happy in Vancouver. When the war came, first George and then Henry signed up in the RCAF. Unfortunately, before Henry could even make it out of America, the plane he was in crashed, and he and his pilot were killed. May focused instead on her new daughter-in-law, George's wife Merle, and her first grandchild, who had been born in February of that year. George returned from the war, and more grandchildren followed. When Bjarne was hit by a car and died, May's sister Marge came to live with her, and the two lived together until the late seventies, when May's health began to decline, so George moved her down to a nursing home Washington, where the family had moved in the sixties, so he could be closer to her if she needed his help. She died there in 1983.


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About this blog

This blog is maintained by two sisters who have had a life long interest in geneology.
Mika writes here mostly about our family (Hansen, Hillinger, Bordewick, Park, etc), and her search for more information.
Shannon mostly uses this space as a place to make the many stories written about and by her husband's family (Holly, Walker, Walpole, etc) available to the rest of the family, present and future.

Our blog is named Oh Spusch! mostly because Shannon is bad at naming things. The first post I put up includes a story about the time Walker's great grandfather took his whole family out to see a play and the littlest kept saying "Oh! Spusch!" No one ever figured out what she meant by that.