Four generations of the McCall family have compassionately attended to the funeral needs of Greater Victoria since David M. McCall and James M. McCall founded McCall Bros. Funeral Directors in 1921. It is a testament to the strength and caring nature of our family that one generation followed another in helping Victoria’s bereaved for nearly 100 years.
McCall Gardens was founded in 1921 as McCall Bros. Funeral Directors Ltd and was located on the corner of Johnson Street and Vancouver Street in downtown Victoria. It started with the purchase of an 1884 residence built by Victoria pioneer, JH Todd, who founded the Todd Fish Canneries where the Empress Hotel now stands. The McCall brothers purchased the residence from Lee Mong Kow who was an interpreter and important figure in the history of education in Victoria’s Chinatown. The residence was substantially improved and converted into a first-class funeral home for its time. The property across the street was seeded to grass, planted with flowers and carried the name McCall Gardens.
In 1960, Torrey and Graham McCall, second generation, embarked on a project which would see a new funeral home and chapel built replacing the original home. The new funeral home, designed by renowned architect John Di Castri, was leading edge for its time and under the guidance of Graham and Torrey became the largest independent funeral home in British Columbia. Around the same time, the property across the street, McCall Gardens, was repurposed into a parking lot due to parking and traffic concerns.
David A. McCall, third generation and son of Graham McCall, became President and owner of the company in 1977. Three years later Graham McCall died unexpectedly at the age of 61. In 1986, David had the vision and foresight to purchase a property on Falaise Drive, conveniently located next to Royal Oak Burial Park. His thought was that the property would one day be needed to relocate operations out of the downtown district. In 1998, David built a small funeral home on the property and named it Sequoia Gardens after the large sequoia trees scattered across the almost three acre property.
In 2014, David and his son Trevor knew it was time to either build a new facility on the Falaise Drive property or embark on a massive renovation to update its downtown facility. After careful consideration and community research, it was decided by the McCall family to sell the downtown properties and build a brand-new state of the art facility on the Falaise Drive property.
On August 3, 2016, the new funeral home and event centre opened its doors and McCall Bros. Funeral Directors and Sequoia Gardens combined and was rebranded to become McCall Gardens.
Trevor McCall, President, and Craig McCall Williams, Manager of Advanced Planning, represent the fourth generation of the McCall family. Trevor and Craig are proud of the company’s history and are honoured to continue the tradition.
Each successive generation that joins McCall Gardens continues to keep it vital and moving forward. The McCall family and staff honour and value tradition but at the same time have embraced change. The ability to evolve to meet customer needs decade after decade has been crucial to the company’s longevity.