June 15, 1932 – July 30, 2016
It is with great sadness that the family of June O’Keefe announce her passing on July 30th, 2016 in Campbell River, B.C.
June was born in Carmyllie, Scotland to Gertrude and David Gibb. She took her nurses training in Arbroath, Scotland followed by midwifery training in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and then her District Nursing training in Glasgow, Scotland. June worked as a District Nurse in Glasgow for one year before moving to Canada in 1957, planning to stay for only a few years.
She worked in Port Saunders, NL, at the time a remote outport village. She was in sole charge of nursing care for thirteen settlements, including the Forestry Camp, providing everything from dental care to midwife skills. She met her husband Bob in Port Saunders and they were married in 1958. They had five children before he passed away in 1963.
Over the years June raised her children and worked in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland before moving to Saskatoon in 1979 to continue her career with Corrections Canada at the Regional Psychiatric Center. In 1983 June completed the Canadian Nursing Unit Administration Program. June retired at age 62 and moved to Vancouver Island as the weather and the ocean reminded her of Scotland. June is predeceased by her husband, Robert Ronald O’Keefe (1963) and her sister Marjorie Reid of Scotland.
June is survived by her loving children; Anne (Ron) Blanchard, Tyrone O’Keefe, Perry (Rene) O’Keefe, Fern (Paul) Giesbrecht, Karen O’Keefe; her grandchildren Bob Blanchard, Dustin (Rebecca) Giesbrecht, Tonya O’Keefe, Bryan O’Keefe, Daniel (Joseé) Blanchard, Shannon (Cliff) Hyrcha, Julian Blanchard, Larissa McAuley, Kyrstyn McAuley-O’Keefe, Genevieve (Kevin) Gallagher, Amanda Armstrong, Nicole Armstrong; great-grandchildren Gabriel, Camden, Jasper, Ava, Samantha, and newly born Hendrix, and her nephews David and William Reid and their families in Scotland.
June was known for her kind and loving nature. She loved gardening and took great pride in her houseplants and flower beds. She loved bagpipes, bonfires on the beach, bird watching, reading, and doing crossword puzzles. June loved animals and would take in any stray (animal or human) in need of help. June was devoted to her family and has been a huge influence in her grandchildren’s lives.
The family would like to thank Dr. Proctor and the North team of Home Support and Nursing for the excellent care they provided.
At June’s request there will be no service. She will be cremated with her ashes to be scattered at a later date.