Hood, Betty (nee Benwell)
June 9, 1928 – January 8, 2021
On the 9th of June, 1928 a force of nature was born in London England. Betty was the apple of her father’s eye and grew up loving horses and dogs. She was by all accounts an adventurous child who spent her holidays where her maternal family farmed, Bradley Green, Worchester, surrounded by cousins and the animals she loved.
At age 10 Betty was separated from her family because of the war and went to boarding school, where she excelled in sports, tennis, field hockey and badminton to name a few. She played piano for the chapel and explored her passion for art.
When she graduated, her future was a matter of debate between her and her father. Betty wanted to be a large animal vet and her father (who was in the cavalry in WWI and had a healthy respect for horses) pushed Betty into medicine. Betty’s rebellious side pushed through and by the end of her first year she was enrolled as a physiotherapist.
While at a hospital dance in London, a young man who had spent the war in Canada fell in love with Betty’s ankles. Betty held her cards close to her chest and committed to Douglas Cameron Hood once he had obtained her father’s permission for her hand. Upon Betty’s mother’s request, he also sold his motorcycle and purchased his first car, Squinty Liz.
In 1951 Betty and Doug were married and subsequently emigrated to Canada where they finally located in Agincourt, Ontario. Betty’s career was launched in Toronto as she set up the physiotherapy department in Women’s College.
A family requirement was to love or learn to love sailing. Betty was always available for cruising, but racing was another issue. Doug and Betty did 3 extended cruises to the Caribbean in their sailing yacht, Laura, and after retirement they circumnavigated the world on freighter cruises.
Betty’s most peaceful years were spent on the property she and Doug shared on Massassauga Point in Prince Edward County, on Sandy Cove. There she pursued her passion for painting and gardening as well as enjoying the company of several generations of canine companions.
Betty’s final move was to Ottawa last June to be close to her daughter, granddaughter, and great-granddaughter.
She is survived by her son Robert C. Hood, daughter-in-law Lucy Hood (Beaumont, Texas), daughter Susan E. Hood (Ottawa, Ontario), grandchildren Jennifer E. Murphy and Zack Murphy (College Station, Texas), Emily M. Hood and Ja Bell (Kilgore, Texas); Tyler C. Hood and Alyssa Hood (Fort Worth, Texas), Catharine C. Hood and Benjamin VanStarkenburg (Ottawa, Ontario), and finally her great grandchildren Connor D. Murphy (College Station, Texas) and Astrid VanStarkenburg (Ottawa, Ontario).
In lieu of flowers, Betty loved the work of Doctors Without Borders, her memory would be best served by helping this organization.