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"TVO" 2006 Obituary


TVO 

TVO o@ca.on.middlesex_county.london.london_free_press 2006-05-25 published
Bernard OSTRY, 78, played key culture role
By Canadian Press, Thurs., May 25, 2006
Toronto -- Bernard OSTRY, one of the most creative public servants of his generation, died of cancer yesterday at 78.
Stylish, intellectual and visionary, he helped shape the country's cultural infrastructure as a government official in Ottawa and Toronto and, late in his career, as head of TVOntario.
His recent gifts to the Royal Ontario Museum and the University of Toronto's Massey College stand to enrich Toronto's cultural life for years to come.
High Style: The Ostry Collection at the Royal Ontario Museum was published last fall to catalogue the rich Art Deco and Art Nouveau furniture collection OSTRY and his wife, Sylvia, donated to the museum.
"The Ostry collection was really what justified us being able to create an all-new gallery on 20th-century design," Royal Ontario Museum director William THORSELL said yesterday, of a space to open next year.
Massey College established the Bernard Ostry Foundation 1½ years ago with $500,000 from paintings OSTRY sold at auction.
At high school in Winnipeg, OSTRY met his future wife, Sylvia KNELMAN. They studied at the University of Manitoba, did post- graduate work in England, then took up senior public service posts in Ottawa.
In 1970, OSTRY became assistant under-secretary of state, credited with being the chief architect of a number of multicultural initiatives under then prime minister Pierre Trudeau.
He later was secretary-general to the National Museums of Canada, deputy minister of communications and Paris-based special adviser to western Europe on culture and communications technology.
In a parallel career, Sylvia OSTRY served as head of the Economic Council of Canada and a director of the Paris-based Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.
"They made a very unusual and potent combination," said Allan Gotlieb, former Canadian ambassador to Washington.
In 1985, after serving as deputy minister in three Ontario ministries, OSTRY took charge of TVO. For seven years, he directed the educational channel's huge growth in international deals and became one of the country's most eloquent defenders of public broadcasting.

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TVO o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2006-03-15 published
Margaret GIBSON, Writer: (1948-2006)
Author of Opium Dreams and The Butterfly Ward produced works of singular vision, writes Sandra MARTIN. It was an intense and brilliant output that was too often sidelined by the march of mental illness
By Sandra MARTIN, Page S9
There were many Margaret GIBSONs and all of them were complicated. She was like a prism that could shimmer with refracted brilliance one moment and then fracture into dangerous shards the next. As a writer, she was like a foreign correspondent reporting from the front lines of insanity, taking readers places where most of us have never been in collections of stories such as The Butterfly Ward and Sweet Poison, screenplays such as Outrageous, Ada and For the Love of Aaron and in her only published novel, Opium Dreams, which won the Chapters/Books in Canada first-novel award in 1997.
Although she self-diagnosed as autistic after she read Donna Williams's memoir, Nobody Nowhere, Ms. GIBSON was probably a paranoid schizophrenic. In one of her "good" periods in the early 1990s she described what it felt like to have a mental illness. "It is not so much that madness… is a muddied eyehole, but rather it is seeing things too sharply, clearer than clear, a light that fills up your eyeholes and is, in the end, blinding with its visions."
Ms. GIBSON worked with some top literary editors, including Ellen SELIGMAN at McClelland and Stewart, Phyllis BRUCE at Harper Collins and Barry CALLAGHAN of Exile Editions. "All writers write out of their experiences, but this was like an open vein," said Mr. CALLAGHAN. "If ever a writer in this country hit on the terrors that seem to strike at women who are defenceless and vulnerable," it was Ms. GIBSON. " She was frightening in her presence and she was frightening in her work because she was really in touch with the madness that was loose inside herself" and by extension, in "metropolitan life." "Losing the words" to describe her terrors was often a signal that her illness was on the march again. And that made knowing Ms. GIBSON a desperate struggle to keep her afloat without being sucked into the whirlpool that was her life. As her loyal friend, Shirley FLAVELLE, said: "She was a 24/7 girl. You could only live with her when you were young."
Margaret Louise GIBSON was the second of five children of Bell Telephone engineer Dane GIBSON and his wife Audrey (neé McCULLOUGH.) She grew up on a small rural property on what was then the eastern edge of Scarborough, Ontario, on land her father, an air force tail gunner in the Second World War, had been able to buy with a veteran's grant. Her older sister Dana was bright, gregarious and an excellent student. Her twin sisters, Lenore and Deirdre, were a younger playful unit. Margaret, or Margie as her family called her, was the solitary dreamy one.
"We were a typical Canadian family except that there was one daughter who was always ill, her whole life," said Deirdre GIBSON, a planner. Margaret GIBSON herself once said that "colours hurt" when she was a child. "A leaf was a kaleidoscope," she said. "Starting kindergarten damn near killed me. But I was never lonely I'm a one-piece band." Puberty is difficult for most adolescents but for Ms. GIBSON it was catastrophic. Always withdrawn, she started slashing her arms and eventually attempted suicide. She spent about a year at the Homewood Health Centre in Guelph, Ontario, experiences that she would later use as a trigger for her fiction. After she was released, her parents sold the beloved family property and moved to a housing development so she could start "over again" in a fresh environment.
The new school was even more disaffecting than the old one, but Margaret did make Friends with two alienated classmates, Shirley FLAVELLE and Craig Russell EADIE. He later became well known as the female impersonator, Craig RUSSELL. A bisexual, he was addicted to drug and drinks and died of an Aids-related stroke in 1990.
In September of 1971, Ms. GIBSON married Stuart GILBOORD, a young man she had met briefly six years earlier through her father. "She was damn interesting to talk with," Mr. GILBOORD said, adding that she was an attractive woman who wore heavy makeup as a defence against the world. Their son Aaron was born on November 22, 1972.
At the time, Ms. GIBSON's psychiatrist was encouraging her to write as therapy. "I would come home from work and we would talk for three or four hours about her writing," said Mr. GILBOORD. Her concentration was all-consuming and obsessive and she used phrases that were brilliant, but the process was "draining."
Mr. GILBOORD took some of his wife's stories to a script supervisor he knew at TVOntario. She showed them to Michael MacKLEM of Oberon Press in Ottawa. Ms. GIBSON's stories subsequently appeared in Oberon's annual Best Canadian Stories anthologies and in a solo collection, The Butterfly Ward, under her married name, Margaret Gibson GILBOORD. (She and Mr. GILBOORD, who now works for a call centre, divorced when their son was a toddler.)
Reviews were exultant. William FRENCH, then literary editor of The Globe and Mail, described her as a "writer of burning intensity and rare vision, an accomplished explorer of hidden caves of the mind." This debut shared the City of Toronto Book Award in 1977 with Margaret Atwood's Lady Oracle.
Meanwhile, Ms. GIBSON's story Making It (from The Butterfly Ward) about her Friendship with Craig RUSSELL was made into the low-budget film Outrageous. Starring Mr. RUSSELL as himself and Hollis McLAREN as Ms. GIBSON, it was the hit of the 1977 Toronto film festival.
Former Chatelaine editor Rona Maynard was a young writer at Flare magazine at the time. Intrigued by both Ms. GIBSON and The Butterfly Ward, she began writing a profile of the "hot" writer. "She had a deep Lauren Bacall voice, kohl-rimmed eyes, an air of world-weary glamour," smoked long black cigarettes in a holder and "had a burning passion for language unlike anything I have ever seen," said Ms. Maynard.
The two women became Friends, but when the profile was about to be published, Ms. GIBSON had her lawyer send a threatening letter to the magazine, and "so she dropped out of my life." At the time, Ms. GIBSON was also immersed in a bitter custody battle with her former husband. She turned some of that experience into Sweet Poison, a collection of stories published by Phyllis Bruce at HarperCollins. Another story was turned into the television movie, For the Love of Aaron.
Mr. GILBOORD provides a convincing anti-story to Ms. GIBSON's claims of abuse, saying that he and his father-in-law were in constant communication with each other and with child-welfare officials trying to protect Aaron and manage Ms. GIBSON's erratic behaviour.
"She tried the best she could to raise me," said Aaron GILBOORD, who is now 33 and living with his wife and three sons in Manitoba, where he works as a juvenile counsellor with young offenders. He left home when he was 16, but remained in touch with his mother and his father. Ms. GIBSON wrote a poem about her son, when he was 5, saying in part, "and to phone the doctor when I a.m. crazed and always you bring my pill bottles/offering them up with renewed hope each time." The poem appeared in Aurora: New Canadian Writing, edited by Morris Wolfe. By the late 1980s, Ms. GIBSON was living in a subsidized unit in a housing co-op. That's how she met her second husband, Juris RASA, an architectural draughtsman who was living in the same development. Apparently, she showed up at his door one day to ask for bandages because her fingers were bleeding from banging on the keys on her typewriter. Eventually, they moved in together and married. He helped her learn to use a computer and to make the transition from short stories to the longer form of the novel.
Her literary Friends, including the late Timothy Findlay and his partner, screenwriter William Whitehead, and journalist June Callwood helped her get grants to support her writing and introduced her to agent Dean Cooke, who agreed to represent her in the early 1990s. He believes that Mr. RASA made it possible for her to write Opium Dreams, the novel that Ellen Seligman published at McClelland and Stewart.
"I was always amazed by her stamina and staying power because I anticipated the editing of the book would be hard for her," said Ms. Seligman, who came to treasure their long conversations on the telephone. "I think writing sustained her, more so than any other form of nourishment."
The novel was a literary success, but Ms. GIBSON was sinking again into mental illness. She and Mr. RASA separated in the late 1990s after she repeatedly accused him of trying to murder her. He died about a year ago. Ms. Maynard had reconnected with Ms. GIBSON in the mid 1990s during one of her many episodes of instability and formed an unofficial support group with Mr. Cooke, Mr. Wolfe and Ms. Callwood. "She was getting farther and farther away from reality," said Ms. Maynard.
About four years ago, Ms. GIBSON was diagnosed with an aggressive breast cancer. She was seeing an oncologist, but stopped chemotherapy, probably because she was afraid of the side effects of her complex combination of medications.
Margaret Louise GIBSON was born in Scarborough, Ontario, on June 4, 1948. She died of metastasized breast cancer in the Palliative Care Unit at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto on February 25, 2006. She was 57. She is survived by her son Aaron, his wife Jennifer LAMBERT, their sons Logan, Drew and Ayden, and her three sisters Dana, Lenore and Deirdre and their families.

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TVO o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2006-03-23 published
McGILLIVRAY, Derek Richard
Passed away suddenly of heart failure at his residence in Toronto on March 19, 2006, age 64 years. Beloved husband and best friend of Heather (née LING) and proud and loving father of Craig, Elissa (Josh RANDELL) and Kate. He is survived in British Columbia by his brother Brett (Carol Ann GLOVER) and sisters Fawn (Jim) KNOX and Vicki (Doug) McKEE. Also survived in Prince Edward Island by his mother-in-law Dorothy (Baker LING) ROPER, brother-in-law Dr. Don (Mary K) LING and sister-in-law Karen (Lornie) WOOD. Graduate of University of British Columbia (B.A.) and Carleton (M.A. Canadian Studies.) A job at TVOntario in 1972 began his long-standing involvement in the Canadian television industry, primarily with his own company, Ironstar Communications. Upon retiring, Derek fulfilled the dream of a family trip to Africa and a successful assault of Mt. Kilimanjaro. Well known as a "people person", he will be greatly missed as a warm and loving family-man, a true friend, a respected businessman, an exceptional athlete, a fount of historical and geographical knowledge, and with a fondness for things Scottish, especially celebrating in the tradition of Robbie Burns. Friends may call at the Turner and Porter Yorke Chapel, 2357 Bloor St. W., at Windermere, east of the Jane subway, from 6-9 p.m. on Friday. Funeral Service will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 25, 2006 at Runnymede United Church, 432 Runnymede Rd., Toronto. If desired, donations may be made to the Heart and Stroke Foundation. Condolences may be sent to yorkechapel@turnerporter.ca

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TVO o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2006-04-21 published
Suzanne ROCHON- BURNETT, Broadcaster: (1935-2006)
Articulate, bilingual and passionate, she became the owner of a commercial radio station -- the first aboriginal to do so in Canada, writes Sandra MARTIN. It turned out to be a powerhouse enterprise
By Sandra MARTIN, Page S9
Suzanne ROCHON- BURNETT had more "firsts" in her life than most people have fingers. The first aboriginal woman to own and operate a commercial radio station and the first woman to be inducted into the Canadian Aboriginal Business Hall of Fame, she had many other achievements, including membership in the Orders of Ontario and Canada and an honorary doctorate from Brock University.
Articulate, bilingual and female, she was an obvious candidate for community and cultural boards in the postfeminist, multicultural, postconstitutional Canada of the 1980s and 1990s. What mattered, though, was what she brought to these privileged positions: passion, experience, advocacy, business acumen and commercial success as a broadcaster and the Chief Executive Officer of her own business.
Cultural advocate Nalini Stewart, who met her after both women were appointed to the Canada Council in 1998, remembers Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT quoting Métis leader Louis Riel at her first board meeting: "My people will sleep for one hundred years, but when they awake, it will be the artists who will fuel their spirits."
This statement, which Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT repeated frequently, was like a mantra. "She was a very passionate advocate, but she was not strident," said Ms. Stewart, who credits Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT with pressing the council to hire more aboriginal arts officers. "She was always educating us… and I felt very enriched by all the things I learned from her."
"Suzanne was a grand lady who brought enormous pride to her people," said Tony BELCOURT, president of the Métis Nation of Ontario. Having known her since 1972, he said she was like a sister to him. "She met every challenge head-on, persevered and was successful in everything she touched -- in business, in the arts, in communications, public service and in life. She gave 110 per cent."
Suzanne ROCHON- BURNETT was born in the Laurentians, north of Montreal in the middle of the Depression, the only daughter and middle child of Achille Joseph and Jeanne Marie BURNETT (née FILLION.) She was proud of her Métis heritage, which she could trace back through both sides of her family. She loved to tell stories about how her grandmother made and sold hats to supplement her income after she was widowed in her 40s, with 12 children to raise and a farm to run. Her mother carried on the artisan tradition by designing sweaters, hiring local women to knit them and then selling the finished product to tourists. At 7, Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT was hard at work as a courier, delivering wool to knitters and picking up the finished pieces to take back to her mother to assemble into sweaters.
Her parents sent her to boarding school at Pensionnat des Saint-Anges, a convent in Saint_Jérome, Quebec, where the nuns rapped her knuckles if she didn't attend to lessons or speak clearly in class. Decades later, she told an interviewer that her parents had warned her before she left home to keep her Indian blood a secret because "it doesn't show." She believed her parents were trying to protect her, but it left her "wondering what was wrong with it."
After the convent, she went to Proulx Business College to learn typing and shorthand. The job choices in her community in the 1950s were few: "The bank, the Bell, or the mill." She wasn't interested in the first two, so she applied for a job as a secretary, but the mill owner rejected her, saying she was too talented. According to Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT, he called her father and said, "don't let her work in this small town. It will bury her." Instead, the mill owner introduced Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT to the manager of CKJL-AM (now CJER-AM,) a radio station that had opened in Saint_Jerome in 1952. The manager was so impressed with her diction and pronunciation that he gave her a job.
Later, Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT credited her knuckle-rapping nuns for getting her a start as a broadcaster. But it was her own drive, journalistic talents and easy charm that won her a job as host, producer and public relations director of the station when she was 19, a position she held for six years. During this time, she also repackaged some of her programs for other stations around the province, took night classes in public relations and marketing at McGill University, and began working as a freelance journalist in print as well as broadcast.
With her striking colouring -- pale skin and chestnut hair and dark eyes -- she also found work as a model, becoming "the face" of the Montreal Royals baseball team and appearing in commercials on television. She made the most of the hedonism of the 1960s travelling around Europe working as a freelance print and broadcast journalist, living for a time in Paris, where she was said to have stayed in Edith Piaf's apartment and made Friends with Jacques Brel, hooking up with Gypsies in Spain and acting in commercials for NBC in New York.
Back in Canada, she converted a Laurentian lodge into a successful art gallery. She sold the business after she met and married Gordon BURNETT, owner of CHOW-AM in Welland, Ontario, in 1967. They soon had a baby daughter, Michèle-Elise BURNETT. The family moved to St. Catharines, where Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT was a full-time mother and volunteer for several years. One day, after dropping her daughter at school, she was struck by the empty hours in her days. "I'm 40 years old. I'm going to be 60 one day and I'm going to turn around and say 'what have I done with my life,' " she told Niagara magazine in May, 2005.
She came up with Chansons à la Française, a program idea that she turned into a one-hour show on CHOW that quickly expanded into two, and then four hours. The Ontario Ministry of Culture sponsored its distribution to more than 20 AM and FM radio stations in the province. That led to frequent invitations to appear as a commentator on francophone and Québécois talent on Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Radio's Morningside, first when Harry Brown was a host and then with Don Harron.
In the recession of the early 1990s, her husband's AM radio station was gasping for survival. In 1995, she formed a company, R.B. Communications, and bought her husband's firm Wellport Broadcasting Ltd., and became the owner of a commercial radio station -- the first aboriginal to do so in this country. She was 60 years old and her husband was 75. Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT knew that having an FM frequency was essential for the station's success and she also knew that there was a licence for an FM frequency -- 97.1 -- available from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission.
"I looked at my mom and she looked at me and we said: 'Okay, let's go for it,'" said her daughter Michèle-Elise BURNETT, who was then 28 and in the business, having studied radio and television arts at Ryerson in Toronto. They won the licence in 1997, and launched a new format country music station they called Spirit 91.7 F.M. "It was a powerhouse," said Ms. BURNETT. "We became the second-most powerful station in the market, and very competitive."
Beginning in the 1980s, Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT had begun sitting on the boards of community native and arts and culture organizations, including the Canadian Native foundation for the Arts, TVOntario, the Métis Nation of Ontario, the Canada Council for the Arts and Brock University. At one time, she was working on six major boards simultaneously.
About three years ago, Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT was having trouble breathing. She was diagnosed with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, a progressive scarring of the lungs that makes it increasingly difficult for them to transfer oxygen into the bloodstream. There is no cure and treatment options are negligible. Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT applied for a lung transplant, but she was an unsuitable candidate. She sold the station in 2004, but continued her advocacy work. About a year ago, she and her husband, who had led separate lives for some time, separated. Their daughter said that the radio station was the last thing her parents had in common. After it was sold, they divorced.
Ms. ROCHON- BURNETT made her last public appearance in February when she was the first woman to be inducted into the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business Hall of Fame. Still beautiful, her shoulder-length black hair still shiny, she made a joke about her "leash." It was a reference to the portable oxygen tank held by her 12-year-old grand_son, who had designed a backpack to make it easier for her to carry it around. Always intuitive, she spoke as though she were making a farewell speech, rather than accepting an award. "When you start reliving your life, you realize you don't really have any worries about dying because it is part of life," she said. "I am here to let you know that my life was good. It was full of challenges, but it was a great life." Referring to the many boards on which she served, she was grateful that "her dreams had become a reality" and that she had had the opportunity to work with people who had "the same belief in aboriginal capacity and power."
Suzanne ROCHON- BURNETT was born on March 10, 1935, in Mont Rolland, Quebec She died in Welland, Ontario, of a brain hemorrhage on April 2, 2006. She was 71.
She is survived by her daughter Michéle-Elise BURNETT and her husband Bill REICH and two grand_sons. She also leaves her former husband, Gordon BURNETT. There will be a traditional ceremony and celebration of her life on May 7 at 2 p.m. at the Pond Inlet at Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario

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TVO o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2006-07-17 published
MOE, Roy Ingram
By Glenda MacNAUGHTON; Avery HAINES, Page A14
Husband, father, grandfather, television pioneer. Born December 25, 1920 in Aylmer, Ontario Died April 17 at home in Gilford, Ontario, of natural causes, aged 85.
Roy Ingram MOE was born at Christmas, a nice little present for his folks. He was a gift that kept on giving, especially for his sister Barbara who came along 18 months later. Barbara calls Roy her hero, the one who didn't say much but who was always there when needed. Their childhood was marked by many ups and downs complicated by their mother's chronic illness. There were lots of moves. To Port Dover for fresher air. To Port Bruce -- and back to Aylmer.
When Roy and Barbara were teenagers, they moved to Galt. Roy soon settled into high-school and was becoming known for his talent at the arena, not for hockey -- but for dancing on roller skates. Roy was a regular Fred Astaire on wheels, tossing the girls up in the air and over his shoulder like a pro. Some Toronto scouts even asked him to perform in the big city.
Unfortunately, this did not prove to be Roy's ticket to the Sports Hall of Fame. But it did usher in a passion for mastering all kinds of sports throughout his life. Swimming, water skiing, sailing, golf, downhill and cross-country skiing. And, at the age of 78, he took up surfing (the Internet, that is).
Shortly after the start of the Second World War, Roy joined the air force. Five years of war service in England gave Roy an appreciation for lots of things: Teamwork, dedication, patience and just plain being alive. Roy always said he was glad he turned down the chance to be a tail-gunner and opted for the job of radar operator.
Back at home Roy worked for CHUM Radio and later the pioneer television station Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Toronto he also met and married Norene. They soon had a family of three and were living in the one of the first suburbs of Toronto, Don Mills.
By 1971, Roy was on his own again, he called on Lucille ESSAM. They married in October 1971 and Roy became Dad to a second family two teenagers, Doug and Lee and nine-year-old Steven.
Roy was handsome. His co-workers called him the Silver Bullet because of his trademark silver locks, which had appeared when he was in his late twenties.
Roy was proud to have done technical production in the early days of Canadian Broadcasting Corporation television. Everything was live, no retakes. Over the course of 25 years he did The Hit Parade, The Tommy Hunter Show, Royal visits, broadcasts of the Olympics, skating championships, the first live broadcast from the Arctic and Hockey Night in Canada with Foster Hewitt.
Retirement from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation only lasted so long and he was lured back to the bright lights, this time at TVO. Finally retiring for good Roy used his spare time to travel, fix the house, build a garden and help Lucille look after her dad.
As Roy's eyesight diminished to almost zero, he learned to make the disability disappear. He sat at his computer and felt his way along the keyboard to keep in touch with the rest of the world. If he couldn't read the fine print, so what? The world still offered Benny Goodman's big-band sound. There were still people to love, dogs to pat, squirrels to feed, chocolates to eat and maybe even a trip to try on something new at Eddie Bauer. So much do, so little time.
Quiet fellows can sometimes be overlooked if they just quickly pass you by. But gems like Roy just grow on you. And in his case, familiarity breeds respect, admiration and love. Roy was a keeper weren't we lucky to have kept him for so many wonderful years?
Glenda is Roy's sister-in-law, Avery his daughter-in-law.

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TVO o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.toronto_star 2006-02-07 published
CLARKE, Inez
Peacefully on Monday, February 6, 2006. Loving mother of John and his wife Veronica. Dear sister of Lynette and her husband Paul STADLER, Colleen and her husband the late Ed PILCHUK and Ashley and his wife Adrienne. Loving aunt of 11 nieces and nephews. Inez will be sadly missed by all of her relatives and Friends. Inez brought a great deal of joy to her fellow co-workers at TVO and her numerous Bridge students and partners. The family will receive Friends at the Ogden Funeral Home, 4164 Sheppard Ave. East, Agincourt (east of Kennedy Rd.) on Wednesday from 3-5 and 7-9 p.m. For funeral service information please contact the Ogden Funeral Home, 416-293-5211. Cremation to follow. Special thanks to the staff in Palliative Care at Toronto Grace Hospital. If desired, memorial donations may be made to the Toronto Grace Hosptial Foundation. Father in Thy gracious keeping, Leave we now our loved one sleeping.

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