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Life Story / Obituary
Cyril Edward John Bradshaw was a loving husband, father, and grandfather. A caring nurturer, he cherished his years as a father and was delighted with the arrival of his grandson. Living his life to the fullest and enjoying the company of each and every person who came his way, he leaves behind a wonderful example of accepting all people with compassion. Cy’s warm personality will be deeply missed by all who knew and loved him.
The year 1930 was significantly impacted by the effects of the Great Depression. In America, banks were still closed but there was a promise of a new election year waiting. Just months after independence leader Mohandas Gandhi began his defiant march to the sea in protest of the British monopoly on salt, in the foothills of the Himalaya Mountains Cyril Bradshaw was born in Dalhousie India on June 4th, 1930. His father was stationed there with the Royal British Army. It was an interesting time in history. By the tender age of fourteen, however, Cy and his family were relocated back to England.
Growing up, Cy had an adventurous and often rebellious spirit. During his years at a Catholic school with the stereotypical strict nuns, he managed to crawl out of the window in the detention room where he was serving time for his behavior and slide down a drain pipe to freedom! After his high school days, Cy served his mandatory time in the military with the Royal Air Force. Although he always put forth his best efforts at everything he set his mind to, being a pilot just wasn’t a fit for him. Once he returned home his mother strongly encouraged him (in a sarcastic tone) to get out and get himself a job. He landed at an accounting firm and yet again realized that accounting was definitely not for him. Luckily, one day when he was asked to fix a lady’s watch, his boss immediately noticed his mechanical skills and sent him to work as an apprentice. Cy took his advice and received further education at the Bournemouth Municipal College of Technology and Commerce in the engineering field.
Not to be forgotten, however, was the meeting of the woman of his dreams, Ivy Olive Jeans! The young adults met at a local dance club, the Liberal Club, and danced the night away. Never one to hurry into anything, Cy and Ivy dated for seven years before joining in marriage on September 15, 1956. Shortly after they were married, the happy couple immigrated to Canada so Cy could work on military aircrafts. He enjoyed this work, yet it wasn’t too long before the plant lost its military contract. Cy was one of 40,000 workers having to find new work. His strong skills as an engineer landed him and Ivy in the United States by 1957. Kalamazoo became their home while he worked for National Water Lift. Later, he went on to work for Eaton Corporation. During the course of his successful career as an engineer, he held seventeen U.S. patents for his designs. Remarkably successful and talented in his field, his years as an engineer provided he and his family with many rewards.
As much as Cy enjoyed his work, his family was more important to him. He and Ivy raised four wonderful children; Julie, Paul, Amanda, and Steven. As a father, Cy was very active and involved with his children. He enjoyed playing with the kids regularly. They would often play catch, catch the waves at the beach, and spend countless hours around the campfire during family camping trips. Cy and the family also enjoyed many of the local beaches and one of their favorites was Silver Beach in St. Joseph Michigan. He and the kids made many fond memories there. Occasionally the family would travel back to England to visit relatives. On one memorable trip back, the family was on the same airplane as the Beatles! It was a story they loved to share over the years. Cy was always up for a fun time with the kids and yet was also a disciplinarian. If any of the kids were upset with his lovely bride, Ivy, he always had her back. As a matter of fact, he treated her like a queen for all of their sixty-three married years. Many of their years together they continued to savor the spotlight on the dance floor dancing their way through the joys as well as the pain that life had to offer.
Cy was a man of many special interests. His intelligent side made him a natural at solving the nightly Jeopardy game show quizzes and his love of reading remained a mainstay throughout his life. Proud of his English roots, he admired Winston Churchill for his saving of England and enjoyed many of the British comedies over the years, especially Benny Hill and Monty Python’s Life of Brian. Cy had a natural sense of humor and also enjoyed Gary Larson’s The Far Side comics over the years. During his down time, he loved to work on his stamp collection, do some woodworking, go fishing, or spend time in his garden. When it came to any physical exercise, Cy preferred his time on the dance floor or a long walk with his lovely bride Ivy, playing a round of golf course, or bowling. An avid sports fan, Cy followed his University of Michigan football as well as his Detroit Lions. Win or lose, he remained a loyal fan for many years. When he and Ivy were blessed with their grandson, Wayne, Cy was over the moon! Thankfully, the same energetic spirit he held as a father returned from so many years ago and they played together for hours! The two of them enjoyed one another with a special kind of love. Cy modeled a lifetime of hard work, respect for his family, and taking all things in stride. May his loved ones never doubt his love for each and every one of them and may his many special memories be eternal.
Cyril Edward John Bradshaw died on Thursday, February 27, 2020. He was 89 years old and lived a life full of love, happiness and laughter. His story will be remembered and shared by the surviving members of his family that include his wife, Ivy, his three children; Paul of Long Beach, CA, Amanda of Eau Claire, MI and Steven of Hawaii, a grandson, Wayne Hall and his wife Amy of Bridgman, MI, two great grandsons, Noah and Parker, and a sister, Shirley Sanford of La Jolla, CA. He was preceded in death by his daughter, Julie Prause in 2003 and two sisters, Joan and Daphne. Cy has been cremated and there will be no public services. Please visit Cy’s personal web page at www.BetzlerLifeStory.com, where you can archive a favorite memory or photo and sign his online guestbook. Memorial contributions may be made to The ALS Association, Michigan Chapter or the Alzheimer’s Association.