Hazel Audrey CHONG

August 6, 1929April 30, 2021

Hazel Audrey Chong, passed away peacefully in her sleep at home surrounded by her sons Colin and Craig after a long courageous battle with leukemia on April 30, 2021.

Hazel was born August 6, 1929, in Vernon BC, the youngest of 13 children. After her husband George’s sudden death in 1980, she raised her two sons as a working single parent. She was predeceased by brothers and sisters; David, Helen, Edith, Henry, Frank, Walter, Ruth, Pearl, Laura, Edward, and Richard. She is survived by sister Margaret of Ottawa, sons Colin and Craig (Corinne), grandchildren Naomi and Aiden, and her many nephews, nieces, grandnephews and grandnieces. She loved them all dearly as they loved her.

Motivated by her brother, Edward, and supported by her sisters, Hazel pursued her educational aspirations and graduated with a Home Economics degree from UBC. She followed her passion for sewing by teaching Home Economics in a career that spanned 35 years until her retirement in 1984. While she started her teaching career with short-term assignments in Armstrong, Lumby, and Nanaimo, she spent most of her career working for the Vancouver School Board at John Oliver, Sir Charles Tupper, and Eric Hamber. After retiring from teaching, she channeled her energy into working at Mr. Jax Fabric store on Cordova Street for two years and the jewellery department of Eaton’s at Metrotown for another six years.

Hazel enthusiastically embraced travelling and cruising, visiting 66 countries. She was an avid Vancouver Canucks hockey fan and had a “cold one” ready to enjoy while she watched them play, banging pots and pans each time they scored a goal.

Always the life of the party, Hazel made many friends. She remained in close contact with many of her colleagues and students, as well as the many others she befriended throughout her life. She enjoyed hosting parties for family and friends and had many wonderful memories of times spent together.

Nothing was ever left up to chance, everything was well planned and orchestrated. As she often said “What I did, I did it my way. That’s has been the story of me, all my life.”

Special thank you to everyone on her South Vancouver Community Palliative Care Team and at the Apheresis Centre at VGH, her GPs, Dr. Viktor Neumann and Dr. David Briggs for their compassion and caring for so many years and her hematologist, Dr. Jorge Denegri for treating her with so much warmth and kindness, giving her not only hope, but ultimately another year for which she was very grateful.

At Hazel’s request, there will be no services, viewing, or gathering due to the current pandemic. Instead, when safe, she would like her sons to plan a memorial gathering providing friends and family an opportunity to raise a glass and share memories together in celebration of her life.

In lieu of flowers, donations to Canucks Place would be appreciated.

She will be greatly missed.


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Hazel Audrey CHONG

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Sharon Leong

May 11, 2021

My fondest memories of Aunty Hazel are the delicious family meals she lovingly prepared. Her culinary and baking skills were out of this world. Family dinners began in the living room, where appetizers - tiny tidbits of surprising flavours - were served. This was followed by the main course in the dining room - a buffet of wonderful, yummy dishes, ranging from roast beef, chicken, pasta, salads, seafood - everything under the sun. The adults sat around the dining table, chatting and laughing, while the younger generation made ourselves at home in the kitchen. After indulging in what seemed like endless plates of deliciousness, Aunty Hazel would bring out an array of desserts: pies, cakes, fruit plates - you name it - she made it. The meal was not only a night of continuous eating - it was a Gourmet Eat Fest !
I remember the trip we took to visit Aunty Ruth in Palm Desert in 1987- Joe, Lindsay, Colin and myself. We planned an early start to the 3 day drive and arranged to pick up Colin at 6:00 in the morning. I thought it would be a quick extraction, but to our surprise, a huge breakfast awaited us. Aunty Hazel had prepared a buffet of bacon, eggs, pancakes, hash browns and fruit. An hour later, she sent us on our way with a load of sandwiches for the road.
Whenever we visited, we were always welcomed with food. It was an expression of her love. Thank you, Aunty Hazel, for all the delicious meals !

Joyce Priebe ( Barr)

May 9, 2021

I attended John Oliver from 1962 and graduated in 1967. I was saddened to read that Mrs. Chong had passed and remember her with a smile as I recall her trying to show and teach us how to make an apron. Here it is almost 56 years later and I still remember how amazed I was when my yellow and white gingham apron with a yellow sewn in hand towel was actually completed!! It’s amazing how after all these years some teachers are still remembered with fondness and respect!! Mrs. Chong is one of them. My condolences to her friends and family.

Robert Hamilton

May 8, 2021

Auntie Hazel’s advice, suggestions and (at times) insistence in doing things “her way” arose from her own hard-knocks experience grounded in caring and compassion for others. She wanted others to avoid the problems and setback that it was in her power to prevent.

Nowhere was this more evident than in the personal traditions that she adopted or invented. Finding the best way sometimes involved being open to trying things in new ways. This is an approach to life that I’ll always carry forward from Hazel.

One day Hazel, Margaret and I visited Ruth at her retirement residence. We found her standing in the lounge outside of her room, spooked because “there’s a man in my room”, she said in a whispered voice.

“Oh?” said Hazel, “I tell you what. I’ll go in there and if he’s a looker, he’s mine and if he’s a troll, he’s yours!” She confidently strolled into the room and came out shrugging her shoulders. “He’s gone! Oh well, maybe next time” she said. Everyone chuckled.

Jeff Yuan

May 7, 2021

It will never be the same without Mom.... raised two great sons and helped raise three more.

Will always remember coming over the old house and feeling like a second home.