THE ADVOCATE 343
VOL. 76 PART 3 MAY 2018
courthouse, I extended my hand, smiled and said: “Hello, Judge!” Bev burst
out laughing. Patting my shoulder, she protested: “Oh, you don’t have to call
At one of the many tribute functions Bev has recently attended, she
recounted making a last-minute reservation at a popular Vancouver restaurant.
Because it was fully committed, she was encouraged by her companions
to mention that it was Bev McLachlin requesting a table, and sure enough,
that did the trick, and a table was booked. When Bev arrived at the restaurant
and gave her name, the hostess was visibly disappointed. She confessed that
she had thought it was Sarah McLachlan who made the reservation.
Bev married Frank McArdle in 1992. Frank has been a loving and supportive
spouse and someone who, as Bev points out, always makes her
laugh. Jim had this to say about Frank and Bev’s relationship in 2000:
Frank (fortunately so because Bev’s schedule requires that she travel a
great deal) enjoys both her company and the rigours and variety of travel.
The Roman Emperors had a functionary whose job it was to stand at the
shoulder and periodically whisper, “Remember thou art mortal” … From
time to time the Chief Justice of Canada I am sure requires such assistance
(hard as it is to imagine in Bev’s case) and Frank is there for her at
Bev and Frank share an enviable quality: they are fast walkers. As Gib
van Ert, executive legal officer to the present (and immediately past) Chief
Justice observed: “The Chief and Frank walk really fast in airports. Really
fast. And they don’t stop, either.” It’s remarkable considering their age, and
a bit tricky for the hapless ELO trying to follow along (who is usually carrying
a bag of protocol gifts for giving to foreign dignitaries and is therefore
not quite as nimble as the Chief Justice and her athletic husband).
Gib added: “I can’t think of anything she’s not good at. I mean, I’ve never
asked her how her tuba playing is, but my guess is it’s better than most. She
just doesn’t seem to have the ordinary human limitations. It would be
annoying if she weren’t so nice.”
It is true. Her abilities and accomplishments give her an “otherworldly”
quality. But I have discovered an Achilles’s heel, albeit a very minor one.
Beverley does not, and cannot, play cards. At all. Does not know a jack from
an ace. Card playing was not permitted in her household growing up, and
while her sister Judi learned to play in university, Bev has never done so.
She has had a number of dogs over the years—always black labs—whose
names are often taken from literature. There was Cas, short for Thomas
Hardy’s The Mayor of Casterbridge. Before Cas was Kyrie, which is Greek for
“Lord”. A few years ago, when there was some tension between the court
and the then prime minister, she and her family were brainstorming names