Ileane Gillett


Vibrant, loving, quick-witted and joyful – a woman of great outer and inner beauty.

Our beloved mother, grandmother, aunt and friend left on her next great journey on the first day of autumn surrounded by love and flowers in her adopted Denman Island home. Wife to John for 64 years, loving mother to Leslie, “supergrandma” to Simon, Zoe, Emma and Nik, special aunt to Lanett & John, Randel & Lynda, John and Mary, and Kelvan, mother-in-law to Bill. Her brother Lloyd was very dear to her as was his wife and her long-time “sister” Dayle. Other people who held special places in her heart include Auntie Phyllis, Godfrey and Sally in England, Glenys Wilson, Nan & Buck Buchanan, Keith & Katherine Brown, Shirley & Sandy Smart, “first-son” Andre Bouchard, and the ladies of the ACW at St. Stephen’s Anglican Church in West Vancouver. A recent addition was her friend and caregiver Joy Lance.

Ileane’s life was long, well and joyfully lived. In her working career she was a bank manager, a career diplomat and the last and perhaps most fun, classified ad person at the old Lions Gate Times. She and John travelled the world for work and play, especially enjoying their many years living in England, France, Germany and Ottawa. They boated around the waters of BC for more than 30 years, and took a six-week trip to Alaska on one 34-foot boat the year Ileane turned 70. Ileane was a favorite with children wherever she lived, known as Mother Goose and Mother Duck in many neighbourhoods across Canada as well as being a favourite Brown Owl. A wonderful and inventive cook, Ileane had an amazing ability to create a beautifully gracious yet fun atmosphere whether as hostess or guest. For many years, diplomatic duties including hosting three of four soirees a week, entertaining Russian leader Nikita Kruschev on one memorable occasion.

Great joys in Ileane’s life included travel, her house on the rock in West Van, fine food and wine, dinner table conversations, gin and tonics on the deck, plays, music, good books, shopping at second-hand boutiques, managing her investments, having laughing times with friends, and most of all, her four grandchildren who she loved beyond all else. Each one holds a separate and special place in her heart, and she was so glad she got to play and be loving with new babies four times!

Ileane’s legacy is one of active love, quick-wit, readiness for adventure, service to family and community, and a quiet insistence on doing the right thing for the right reason. Her firm gentleness and zany spirit will live on in her family and friends and we know she will continue to care for us all forevermore.

A celebration of her life will be held on Denman Island Sunday, September 30, 2007. Another get-together for family and friends will be held in West Vancouver at a later date.

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