New Brunswick

'The Queen of the Miramichi' considers retirement at 93

At 93-years-old Betty Fitzpatrick may be Canada's longest serving realtor.  After nearly five decades of selling homes she's only now considering retirement to spend more time with family. 

Betty Fitzpatrick says she may retire from her career as a real-estate agent in a year or two

At 93, Betty Fitzpatrick may be Canada's longest serving realtor. (Shane Fowler/CBC News)

Betty Fitzpatrick says she only goes by her actual name of Hilda when the police pull her over. 

To the hundreds of homeowners and sellers she's worked with over the last 49 years, she simply goes by Betty. 

"People will stop you on the street and say 'You sold us our house 23 years ago,'" said Fitzpatrick. "I don't remember them though." 

But don't try to blame forgetting a name on her age, it's only because there have been so many clients.

At 93, Betty Fitzpatrick may be Canada's longest-serving realtor. 

After nearly five decades of selling homes, she's only now considering retirement to spend more time with family. 

"People were always wondering how old I was and I always said 'my age is a number and it's unlisted,'" said Fitzpatrick.  "So that worked until a couple of my friends got together and insisted they were going to throw a birthday party for me on my 90th birthday."

"So, the word was out, and business has seemed to go down," said Fitzpatrick. 

Known as the "Queen of the Miramichi," Betty Fitzpatrick is considering retirement after nearly 50 years of selling houses. 1:56

Love of the job

Despite the recent lull that has her considering finally putting her feet up, Fitzpatrick said the work has always come naturally to her. 

"I like people, I like meeting new people and making friends," said Fitzpatrick. "And that's part of being Miramichier." 

Outfitter and sportsmen lodges near her hometown of Miramichi have been a specialty. 

"The fishing and hunting lodges properties, that's what I like," said Fitzpatrick. "You get to meet a lot of owners, and guides and guests. It keeps me out of mischief."   

She was nicknamed the "Queen of the Miramichi" in an article in Real Estate Magazine celebrating her long career. That was seven years ago. 

Betty Fitzpatrick was nicknamed 'The Queen of the Miramichi' in an article in Real Estate Magazine celebrating her long career. (Shane Fowler/CBC)

The nickname also reflects her love of the outdoors, and she's a bit disappointed she didn't get her moose license this year. 

"But I did get it five years ago, and I got my moose," said Fitzpatrick. 

The possibility of retiring would mean splitting her time between the wilderness and family, including five children, 12  grandchildren, and 16 great-grandchildren. 

And she said if she does retire in a year or two, her husband, Jack, will also get more Betty. Last month, on her birthday, the couple celebrated their 72nd wedding anniversary.  

"The Lord has been very good to our family," said Fitzpatrick. "I am truly blessed." 

About the Author

Shane Fowler

Reporter

Shane Fowler has been a CBC journalist based in Fredericton since 2013.

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