She was born in 1933 in Surrey, England, and grew up in Shoreham-by-Sea during World War II. Her childhood was filled with piano and ice-skating lessons, along with singing and dance lessons that culminated in her making a record. She even won a beauty pageant and swimsuit competition in her teenage years.
When she was 17, she worked at a Lily & Skinner shoe store where she earned the top sales award. She even got to travel to London to receive the award.
During that same year, she met her future husband, Stan Burton, where they danced to the song “You’re Too Young.”
She got married in 1953, moved to Canada in 1960, delivered her first son in England in 1961, had her second son in 1965 and moved to Maple Ridge in 1992.
She was a member of the Eastern Star in Guelph for over 50 years and has stayed close to her most meaningful friends over the years. She even line danced for 20 years and attends chair exercise classes while always finding the time of day to talk to family and friends over the phone.
This woman, whose name is Betty Lillian Burton, is turning 90 years young today. And as she hits this amazing milestone, she should be proud to have lived the full life she has lived this far. Betty has lived a life many people can only dream of living, and she has two sons, two daughters-in-law, five grandchildren and five great grandchildren who can all attest to Betty’s greatness.
Not only that, but they all look up to her as not only the matriarch of the Burton family lineage, but a great role model.
“She means a lot to me,” Betty’s grandson Scott said. “Grandma is one of the most important people in my life, and is one of the main reasons I am the person that I am today.”
Scott’s father and uncle, Paul and Carl, grew up in a traditional family. Their mother was a stay-at-home mom while their dad was out working and providing tangible things for the family.
It was through this traditionality that they got to be extra close to their mother and learn just how great her morals and values are. Betty has always had a great work ethic to go along with her family-first mentality, and the fact that she sacrificed so much to give Paul and Carl the lives she felt they deserved did not go unnoticed.
“She’s been a good support to me over the years,” Carl stated. “As far as family goes and how she handled things years ago. I’ve gained a lot of advice from her too.”
Betty is all about being there for others. She was of course a supportive and unconditionally loving wife and mother, but she was so much more than that as well.
Betty is the type of woman who can bring a smile to someone’s face just by remembering the little things. She genuinely cares and takes the time to get to know people and what they like, and this is something a lot of people really appreciate about her.
“She never forgets a birthday. She always sends cards with nice messages on them,” her grandson Andrew said. “She always calls to check up on her grandkids too. Whenever we used to go over to her place, she always made sure our bellies were full of delicious food.”
Everything you can think of that makes a grandmother a grandmother, that is Betty in a nutshell. She makes an overabundance of food and loves to play games with her grandkids and great grandkids.
Betty is not short on making memories with her family either. From Carl having to cut his mother’s pants into shorts for her on their Hawaii trip to her bread bag brownies to the grandson sleepovers to the Florida trip with baby Brett to homemade golf in the backyard, all these memories are special because of Betty.
Betty has taught her offspring a thing or two over the years as well, and they are things everyone remembers vividly.
“She taught us how to be respectful and polite,” Carl said. “Mom taught us about appearances and good eating habits too.”
Betty taught her sons all about having a strong relationship with your spouse and children too. Both Carl and Paul are in loving marriages with children of their own, and they can attribute much of their successful marriages to what they learned from their own parents.
“Mom really took good care of us when we were children, even really young children,” Carl said. “She made sure we are well fed. If there are problems, she’d take care of it. We talked about problems and solved them that way, instead of physical discipline.”
That was the way Betty raised her children, and she would not change one thing about the way she raised them up.
And now, she gets to see the fruits of her labor, as she is not only still a wonderful mother to this day to two wonderful sons, but she is also a spoiling grandmother and great grandmother who cherishes time with the grandkids.
“What makes her good to us all is her generous nature and love for children,” Scott said. “Growing up, she was always the most kind person I knew, took very good care of us on sleepovers, was always a very hard worker at family gatherings, and made the holidays very special.”
“My grandma means everything to me,” Brett added. “She has always been there for all of the grandchildren whenever we called on her, which wasn’t too often, but she’s always willing to help. To me, she is more than a grandmother. She is an amazing human being. I love everything about my grandmother.”
Everyone who knows Betty loves everything about her too. She is the friend people can call upon in times of need and in times of triumph. She is just that kind of person.
“She is just very kind, well-mannered and selfless,” Brett said. “She will give the shirt off her own back to help others, especially her family. My grandma is one of the kindest people I have ever met. I have never met anyone that has ever said anything negative about her.”
Betty makes time for anyone at any moment, and her selflessness and love shine through time and again.
“She is the most down to earth, most kind person I’ve ever met in my life,” Andrew said. “She is very selfless and is always looking out for someone’s best interests despite her own.”
The life Betty has lived speaks for itself, and the fact that her family has all these nice things to say about her is all you need to know about how extremely extraordinary and wonderful this 90-year-young woman is.