Maggie Bello (nee McDonald)

September 22, 1952 – July 16, 2021
With exceptionally heavy hearts, the family of Maggie Bello announce her passing. She was loved.
Maggie was born on September 22, 1952, in Chatham, Ontario, and raised in Comber, Ontario, daughter of Ken and Ursula McDonald. Ken was the village postmaster and Ursula, a high school math teacher.
Maggie was one of five children. Her beloved brother, Jim McDonald(Maureen), passed away earlier this year in Toronto much to Maggie’s sorrow. She also cherished a strong sense of sisterhood with Teresa(Charlie), Anna and Helen, who all live in southwestern Ontario.
Maggie grew up in a traditional Irish Catholic household and carried with her a strong sense of justice and compassion. After a time at nursing school and a few jobs, her wanderlust took root and she made three trips with different girlfriends to Vancouver Island.
In 1974, she decided to stay and live next to the ocean in Sooke and work in Victoria. She also volunteered for Big Brothers of Victoria and the John Howard Society.
In 1977, she met Nate Bello and together they moved to Wuikinuxv village at the head of Rivers Inlet. They felt very welcome and much at home there. Two of her children, Gabrielle and Nate Jr. were born there. This time with the Wuikinuxv people was, and continued to be, the highlight of her life.
In 1986, the family of four moved to Quesnel where she became involved in community development and social justice activities. Not long after they moved, Angela, their third child was born to everyone’s delight.
In 1993, Maggie became Executive Director of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Quesnel, where she excelled. Not only did she bring organizational and financial stability, but also real growth. Under her leadership, more and more children from all backgrounds throughout the community benefited from the mentorship programs offered.
In 2014, Maggie and Nate returned to the island where they had met and enjoyed retirement together. They became closer every year. She spent her time nurturing and encouraging her now adult children. She was always there to listen.
She was extremely loyal to her friends and they loved her in return. The intensity of how much she cared for others was nothing less than extraordinary. If Maggie was your friend, it was for life.
Maggie passed away peacefully at home with her family. She leaves behind her loving husband of 43 years, Nate; her children, Gabrielle(Josh), Nate Jr.(Julia) and Angela; as well as three grandchildren, Sienna, Mila and Sam.
Maggie will be forever in our hearts.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Quesnel.

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