On the most beautiful September evening, Joan Quarry, the Queen of our family, decided to start her new career as Angel of Earth. She had worked just 3 months shy of 97 years for her angel wings!
She will be dearly missed by her 5 children (Bill, Barry, Denise, Trevor and Brad), 17 adoring grandchildren (Angela, Brett, Dawn, Drew, Dylan, Elyse, Kara, Kyle, Rachel, Rhian, Rochelle, Rod, Rozana, Samantha, Susie, Tricia and Will) and 23 great grandchildren (Andrew Jr., Ashley, Atlas, Ava, Caitlyn, Cohen, Dawson, Dusty, Isabelle, Jase, Jessica, Jordan, John, Kadence, Lucy, Morgan, Natalia, Ophelia, Paul, Shea, Stella, Taya and Xander).
The sad tears are many, but the happy ones fill so many more buckets. She was the Grandma all kids should be lucky enough to have and they will tell you she was FUN!
Joan was born in Hudson Bay, Saskatchewan. It was a small Canadian National Railway town at the center of four rail lines. Joan was the 5th of 8 siblings (Leslie, Mildred, Donald, Norman, Joan, Ruth, Dorothy and Raymond) who all predeceased her. Her family had the biggest house in town. Her sister, Mildred, played the piano. These two things led her house to be the place where everyone in town came to have parties and sing and dance which Joan loved to do.
Joan’s father and all her siblings were in World War II. She often talked about staying home and running the family grocery store. In the winter she delivered groceries by dog sled and in the summer, she had a sidecar for her bicycle. Her mother took in boarders in their home.
In 1951 she came to Port Mellon. Once the highway from Port Mellon to Gibsons was put through, she moved to Gibsons and built the first house on Veterans Road that is still there today.
Most of her working life was at Howe Sound Pulp and Paper where she worked as Secretary to the Mill Managers. She also worked at the Gibsons BMO back in the day.
Joan was well known for her community work and especially proud when the Gibsons Legion presented her with the Meritorious Service Award for all her volunteer work as Member, Zone Commander and President of the Ladies Auxiliary. Another impressive award she earned was the Palm Leaf, one of the top awards given by Ottawa for exemplary service to the Legion and the community.
Other volunteer services she enjoyed included:
-Boy Scouts & Girl Guides;
-member of the executive of the Old Age Pensioners’ hall;
-put in years with the Port Mellon Credit Union; and
-took many thankful residents to hospital and medical appointments as a volunteer for the Sunshine Coast Home Support’s Driver Program.
Joan had great compassion for war veterans and seniors, even taking in one elderly ma, George Jervis, into her house for years when he had nowhere else to go. He didn’t have any family so she and our whole family adopted him. He was the sweetest man and we all loved him.
She loved Sea Cavalcade and was honored as Golden Girl in 1998 for all the work, energy and enthusiasm she’s given to the people of Gibsons over the years.
Joan enjoyed food and cooking/baking. Her family will miss her homemade buns, mars bar squares, sex in a pan, flapper pie, homemade pickles, Grandma’s fudge and her coleslaw to name some favs.
She liked to be busy busy and never sat idle. Always with a crib board, playing cards or crossword puzzles within reach, even up to last week. The headline in one newspaper article about her was “1998 Golden Girl Can’t Slow Down”. She loved to play games of chance and was very proud of her "29 hand" in Cribbage.
Joan had a great sense of humor and loved practical jokes except that time her son Bill froze her dentures the night before she was leaving early to head home from a Dawson Creek visit lol.
She loved to travel and was part lizard so was always going to Florida, Australia, Mexico or wherever there was sun, water and wine. Oh, how she loved her wine! Until she stopped driving, she always had a box of wine in her trunk (shhhhh). And talk about loving adventure – for her 80th she went parasailing in Florida!
She has set the bar very high, for girls particularly, in our family for generations to come.
She is a Gibsons Legend and the reason the flag at the Gibsons Legion is flying at half-mast this week. The ultimate display of respect and mourning. She would say that “The Legion does so much for the community that nobody even knows about.”
Her passion in life was her children and grandchildren and she loved family gatherings, vacations and events more than anything. She enjoyed a close relationship with all her nieces and nephews and had many life-long friends that were a source of joy to her. The commitment she showed to her family and her community was significant. She will be remembered as the most positive and non-judgmental person.
Special thanks to the staff at Christensen Village that cared for her the past several years. She was known there for knowing all the words to the old songs and had a lovely voice. She would say she “grew up singing”. She’s had many doctors over the years and most recently we are thankful for Dr. Spithoff.
Joan’s celebration of life will be held at the Gibsons Legion Hall on Saturday, October 26, 2019 at 1 pm. Everyone is welcome. Bring Kleenex…it’s going to be so special. We’re going to fill that Legion with so much love for her.
To send flowers to Joan's family, please visit our floral section.