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Ida Serafine Crawley

January 28, 1944 ~ June 5, 2020

The home where Serafine grew up in Austria.

With deepest sadness, this brings the news that Serafine Crawley passed away on June 5, 2020 ending a brief and fierce battle against a very aggressive cancer.

Ida Serafine was born to Siegfried and Anna Kerschbaumer and raised in Arriach, Austria. The rugged beauty of her homeland fostered a love of the outdoors from an early age and hiking was a passion she embraced throughout her life. As a young woman, she travelled to New Zealand to visit her brothers who had settled there, and she too made it her home for a time before moving to Australia. There she met her future husband, Terry Crawley. They married and in 1972 emigrated to Canada, after which Vancouver became her permanent home.

Serafine in her younger years.

In 1975, Serafine joined the staff of CBC Vancouver in the Finance Department and was assigned to financial reporting for television programming including TV News. In succeeding years she undertook responsibility for cataloguing and maintaining the records for Capital Assets for the B.C. Region on top of her regular duties.  In 1997 Serafine transferred to Audience Relations (Communications Department) where she remained until her retirement from CBC in 2002.  She was an EAP (Employee Assistance Program) volunteer for ten years during her CBC career and found that volunteering greatly enriched her life.

Serafine at work in the CBC finance department, 1979.

Retiring from CBC was not the end of Serafine’s working life; she was in the work force for another seven years with the Bear Smart Community Program in West Vancouver and with the District of North Vancouver, until her second retirement in 2009.

In addition to her ardent love of hiking, Serafine delighted in working out at the gym, taking long power walks, practicing and teaching Tai Chi and took great pride in achieving her Brown Belt in Karate.  She cultivated a variety of friendships and strongly valued them all. Serafine was admired for her straightforward sincerity, genuine kindness, and adventurous spirit.  She derived great pleasure from attending musical and theatrical performances, was a consummate hostess with a culinary expertise that made any gathering she catered, a rare treat for her guests.

Serafine in Vancouver on a lovely summer day.

She found great satisfaction in pursuing her many and varied interests, especially as a volunteer at the Vancouver Aquarium and West End Community Centre. She also served as Treasurer of both the CBC 20 Year Association and the British Columbia and Yukon Region CBC Pensioners’ National Association, as President of the Sherlock Holmes Club of Vancouver and as a member of the Rolls Royce Club. As an avid member of a local walking club, she organized a tour of Vancouver historical sites, including a questionnaire for participants to engage in along the way.  Despite a hesitation in writing material because English was her second language, she contributed to club newsletters with stories, quizzes and crossword puzzles.

Travel excited Serafine and the more adventure to new places and new experiences involved, the more she loved it. Jungles, mountains, forests, deserts and beaches were equally fascinating to her and the end of one trip often led to talk of planning another. Serafine’s travels included numerous and diverse trips with her niece Isabella exploring North America and Europe together, creating irreplaceable memories.

Serafine visiting her family in Austria.

Serafine grew up in a large family with 3 sisters and 7 brothers and travelled home regularly to be with them. She and the family always looked forward to her next visit home and for her to get a good feed of her favourite Austrian dishes. Her sister Veronika always enjoyed their many beautiful Christmases together with all the family. Serafine treasured her relationships with her nieces and nephews and spoke often of them and how she valued their shared memories together.

At Serafine’s request, there will be no funeral service or Celebration of Life. A donation to a charity in her memory would be welcome. Serafine was a supporter of The Knowledge Network, Cancer Research (BC Cancer Foundation) and Barclay Manor (West End Seniors’ Network Society).


Serafine on a cruise holiday in 2019.


  • Alan Waterman
    Posted June 15, 2020 at 9:07 pm

    I’m so saddened to hear of Serafine’s passing. She was a wonderful and gentle spirit. Serafine was always a soft-spoken, calming influence in what was often the turbulent business of broadcasting. She will be greatly missed by all of us who worked with her for so long at the CBC.

  • Brad Snelling
    Posted June 16, 2020 at 2:18 pm

    Thank you to whomever set this tribute page up. Wonderful photos and write-up.

    When I first started working at the District of North Vancouver Parks Department in March of 2008, Serafine was the first friendly face i got to know. She welcomed me into the fold and made sure that i got to know everyone, and that i learned the basics about working for a North Shore municipality. She only stayed at the District for a short amount of time, but she made a lasting impression. I and a few other co-workers kept in touch over the years, and she was always eager to meet for a dinner or a lunch to let us know how life was treating her.

    Is it possible to get better looking as one gets older? Leave it to Serafine to be that special someone. She was a humble, elegant and vivacious person to be around and was always interested in trying new things. Karate?! Who knew? =^)

    RIP Serafine…we miss you.

  • Teresa wenstob
    Posted June 16, 2020 at 5:09 pm

    My condolences to the family .Sarafine was a lovely lady. I think she’s known me since I was a little girl. You will be greatly missed by many….. Rest In Peace ❤️

  • Marilyn Brown
    Posted June 17, 2020 at 1:16 pm

    Serafine was for me a thoughtful and generous friend and host and took great care in cooking, with consistently delicious results. Her travels were driven by her curiousity, adventurous spirit and continuing interest in wild places and animals. She used her active intelligence constantly in her daily life to figure out what was happening and why and what was needed. This gift would have enabled her to be an engineer had that been socially acceptable in postwar Austria. She was a discriminating listener of fine music, whether it was on CD, at the National Arts Centre or in Salzburg. I shall very much miss the bright moments that occurred in her company and when her personality travelled across the miles in our long-distance calls.

  • Peggy Oldfield
    Posted June 17, 2020 at 9:49 pm

    Messages relayed by Serafine’s CBC Vancouver colleagues:

    From Ray Waines: “She was such a wonderful person, so full of life I know that everyone who knew Serafine, will miss her wonderful smile. Her kindness was so genuine; she was someone very special to know.”

    From Richard Woo: “The passing of Serafine sure came as a shock. She was such a special person, she will be greatly missed.”

    From Sheryl Smale: “I always assumed we would see her at the next event unless of course she was travelling… such a lovely person. She always offered to help at every event. She was truly community minded… This has made me truly sad. I am sorry for CBC Association’s loss… and of course her family. She loved life and lived a good life. I will hold her in my heart today.”

    From Bert Cervo: “So sad, she was a wonderful person and colleague indeed. Please forward our condolences to the family.”

    From Dianne St Germaine: “I was very sad to hear about Serafine. I met her when she was a delegate one year to one of our (CBC Pensioners’ National Association) conventions. A very nice person,”

    From Paisley Woodward: “I am so sorry. She was lovely.”

    From Rae Hull: “I remember Serafine well. She had a charm and way about her that made you think, just behind that quiet countenance, there’s a fine sense of humour and perspective on the world.”

    From Maurice Moses: “I’m so sad to hear that Serafine passed away. Our thoughts and memories of her will not be forgotten.”

    From Karen Tankard: “I’m so sad to learn this. She was lovely. Sorry for her close friends and family. ❤️”

    From Ken Gibson: “Serafine will long be remembered and loved … she was always a happy, caring, special friend.”

    From Ron Petrescue: “I’m so sorry to hear that Serafine passed away. She was such a Wonderful Lady.”

  • Peggy & Mike Oldfield
    Posted June 17, 2020 at 9:59 pm

    Serafine was a dear and precious friend whom we’ve known since 1975 when she joined the staff of CBC Vancouver where we both worked. A friendship quickly formed and became more precious with each passing year. Whether meeting over work-related matters or sharing a lunch break, enjoying visits to each other’s home or gathering with other friends at personal and CBC 20 Year Association or CBC Pensioners’ National Association events, each and every one has enriched our lives and left us with treasured memories. We were blessed to know her and will remember her with love always. Our deepest condolences to Serafine’s family and friends. Loving wishes, Peggy & Mike.

  • Luis Quinteros
    Posted June 24, 2020 at 2:09 am

    I met Serafine during one of our trips to Haida Gwaii. I remember she was kind and had a good sense of humour. My condolences.

  • Joy Peirson
    Posted July 3, 2020 at 5:55 am

    I met Serafine at our Yoga group in the West End Community Centre in Vancouver. Our group met three times a week in the early morning. We shared gentle times together. She was a sweet and lovely lady. My condolences to her family.

  • Bob Mastin
    Posted July 4, 2020 at 12:19 am

    It was such a happy day for our Yoga group when Serafine first joined us in 2018. My daughter Sally, saw Serafine looking lost early one morning at the West End Community Centre. She invited Serafine to join us and Serafine was immediately at home and adored by all of us. What a wonderful lady she was. We will so miss her lovely smile and manner.

  • Jean Kingston
    Posted July 4, 2020 at 5:10 pm

    During the last few years Serafine joined our early morning yoga group at WECC.. I enjoyed her company and especially after yoga at our coffee when we shared stories. Rest in Peace, Serafine.

  • Michèle Ribaille
    Posted August 21, 2020 at 8:09 pm

    I am deeply saddened to hear of Serafine’s passing. I will always remember her as the kind, fun, curious and adventurous lady she was. I met Serafine in 1980 when I joined the Finance Department at CBC. We quickly became good colleagues and friends. We shared the same love for travelling, hiking, walking along the seawall at Stanley Park, attending theatre performances and visiting galleries. Over the years, we always met to celebrate our common day of birth and we did so this last time in 2020. Serafine talked with great love of her family members in Austria, New Zealand and Australia. I miss her terribly.

  • Juanita Clark
    Posted November 5, 2020 at 3:06 am

    Serafine was a beautiful, classy and intelligent lady whom I (and our mutual friend Trudy) shared many a happy Sundays hiking the mountain trails of BC with the NS Hikers, for well over a decade. Serafine was never afraid to voice her opinion; was bubbly, full of fun and positive energy, advice and enthusiasm for all that she got involved in. She was well-read and a wonderful conversationalist who had a passion for nature, people and outdoor adventure. I was very fortunate to have Serafine as a travelling companion when we visited Hungary, Poland where I learned of her exemplary sense of direction and keen ability to read a map (which I sorely lacked!) Its immensely shocking to learn of Seraphine’s illness and recent passing. You will be sorely missed, dear one. May you be at peace, resting in the arms of angels.

  • Heather
    Posted July 20, 2021 at 10:27 pm

    A year has passed and still find it hard to believe Serafine is no longer with us especially because we couldn’t visit her in hospital before her passing. We first met when she came to CBC Sask Finance to help us with the Capital Asset project. Then again when I transferred here to CBC BC. We got together quite often at Christmas and she’d always say, “I hope you’re making your cabbage rolls” which she really enjoyed. So I will always think of her when I make my cabbage rolls. RIP liebe Freundin.

  • Carolyn Girard
    Posted October 15, 2021 at 6:40 am

    Such lovely tributes and photos of Serafine. I worked with Serafine at the District of North Vancouver and enjoyed getting together with her over the years – inspired by her love of family and friends, kindness, sense of adventure, joie de vivre and determination to see the bright side – especially evident during her illness.

    My heartfelt condolences to Serafine’s family and close friends.

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