Kerry Magnus remembered as selfless, caring
Family members, friends, and former colleagues yesterday remembered Karlene ‘Kerry’ Magnus as a fun-loving, caring woman who enjoyed life to the fullest while enriching the lives of everyone she encountered in her professional as well as personal interactions.
The account executive at Power 106 FM, who died on March 22, was married to veteran broadcaster Alan Magnus for 41 years, and despite illness, which preceded her death, she was the top sales representative for February and March.
This is testament to her perseverance, according to a former colleague from McCann Erickson, who remembered her as a “perfectionist” at the thanksgiving service held at Webster Memorial United Church on Half-Way Tree Road yesterday.
For stepson David, it was Kerry’s all-embracing nature that stood out as she not only preached, but led by example in showing that family is not defined by or confined only to bloodlines. He said she defied the traditional image of a stepmother, sharing her warmth with him and sister Kelly long before she was even married to their father.
“She never had to tell us that she loved us. We just always knew it because she was just there every single step … . And I thank her for sorting out my father – for taking this coal and creating this diamond that his country knows,” he shared. “We thank her because it made our family stronger. She was never intrusive, just always inclusive, and I loved that about her.”
For her son and daughter, Richard and Anna-Kay Magnus Watson, who delivered a joint eulogy, having to share their mom with the rest of the world actually strengthened their own relationships with her.
Calling Kelly and David to join them at the podium, Richard started by declaring that she was a “mom to all of us” before encapsulating the qualities that made her so special.
“She was an amazing woman, an amazing mother, and an even better best friend. Her smile was captivating. Her grace was effortless. Her love will always be here.”
Anna-Kay attributed her own success as a wife and mother to the living example to which she was privy even after marriage. Her tremulous voice embodied the pain of the one drawback, with this admission: “My mother was a control freak who prepared me for everything in life, except this day.”
Her mom’s love of family – “not just blood, but the way she loved, her kindness, her grace, her compassion, everything for a peaceful life” – was a life lesson well-received by Anna-Kay. “The way she loved my brothers and sister, she made us a unit. There was nothing that mommy wouldn’t do for us.”
Stuart Williams, in his remembrance of ‘Auntie Kerry’ noted that she never judged but consistently encouraged, something that has stayed with him.
“I still hear her voice. I still feel her energy, and she left us with so many words and deeds to carry on through the years. And so while she is not here physically to take care of us anymore, I think the best way to honour her is to live the way she would want us to live. To live the laugher, the love, in fellowship, in service to each other, and with the belief that everyone’s happiness is a goal worth pursuing.”