GALLACHER, Joan – UPDATED LIVESTREAM INFO.
May 31, 1939 — January 21, 2023
Joan Gallacher was born in Kincaid, Saskatchewan, on May 31, 1939. Poor on the Depression prairie she rode bareback to school wearing a dress sewn from a flour sack. By the time she was 18, she left the farm and moved to Winnipeg to attend nursing school at St. Boniface. Within 3 years, she was managing an 80-bed med-surg ward. Joan moved to Comox, BC, to practice public health nursing. A field she remained in throughout her 40-year career in Victoria, Ottawa, and Vancouver. During that time she earned a BScN from the University of Victoria, and Masters in Nursing Science from the University of Portland.
Joan and Dan were married for 57 years. Together they raised children, built careers, owned their home, played bridge and enjoyed nature and the arts, travelled throughout Canada and the states and Europe, surmounted challenges, and saw dreams come to fruition. Joan was proud of the fact that their marriage remained strong throughout their lives.
Joan was a caring and loving mother, a sister to Margaret Anne, and a devoted daughter to her own Mom who passed just 4 months prior at 103. Joan is survived by Heather and Ian, who in turn have children Kirsten and Virginia, who in turn have children.
Joan passed to glory in Kelowna, BC, on January 21, 2023, surrounded by love, and filled with the peace of the Spirit.
But day by day I’ll remember walking my sister to school with my Mom when I was about 2 or 3. And my Mom putting me on the swing, and pushing me high. She was always there for me and always will be. We love you Mom.
A Memorial Reception will be held on Wednesday, April 19, 2023, at 10:00 am, in the Family Center, at Springfield Funeral Home, 2020 Springfield Road, Kelowna, BC. If you are unable to attend in person, please join the family online by Livestream at the time of the service (see below), a recording will be made available to view shortly thereafter.
If you wish to send a condolence, post photos, or share a memory, please scroll down the page to the area called “Condolences”.
Wednesday, April 19, 2023, at 10:00 am
The Family Center, at Springfield Funeral Home, 2020 Springfield Road, Kelowna, BC
My deepest sympathies to the families. That is a beautiful photo tribute to Joan, a talented and compassionate nurse in the family, one who has lived a full life with lots of love and devotion to her husand, Dan, her mom, her sister, her kids, and her grandchildren. May she rest in peace always in heaven. I, for one, will miss my sister-in-law.
I had the honor of walking alongside Joan through several major transitions that occurred in her life over the past 8 years. As she supported Lena in her first and then second move to seniors housing, as her and Dan were deciding whether to leave Gallaghers and move closer to town, on her challenge in dealing with her surgery in Vancouver last year and the recovery time afterwards, and when she suddenly heard of her new diagnosis in November of 2022 to her death on January 22. Oh my, the roads we have travelled. I learned so much from her over all of this time and feel honored to have been somehow chosen by God to travel these challenging paths with her. Her strength and resilience through all she went through in her last days shone brightly from her heart, mind and soul. So courageous, yet wise and finally accepting of how her journey would end. I grew to love her and her family that walked the path with her and was strengthened in an amazing way by them all as I deal with my own sister’s terminal illness. I will always remember Joan and be guided by her quiet resolve. Rest well my dear friend, for that is what you became to me. I will always remember the words you shared with me during our many long talks. I will marvel at who you were always with wonder and love, as I came to admire you in a way that is beyond words. I am sharing with you the goals she told me she was focusing on 5 days after she arrived at Hospice House.
Joan became a dear friend to me these past years and I was grateful to be of assistance to her after Dan’s passing. I had the privilege of getting to know both Dan and Joan when they lived in Gallagher’s Canyon. He was a Prince of a man and gentle Joan has a special place in my heart too. Joan was tireless in her efforts to show grace under pressure and selflessness. Even though she knew her time left was short, she made the best of her situation and demonstrated exceptional courage. Joan will live on in my heart.
I am so sorry for your loss. Joan was a woman of integrity, grace and strength. She was a loyal friend and will be missed greatly.
Dear Heather and Ian and families: I am so sorry to hear about your Mother’s passing. Your Mom was one of my co-workers
at the Cook St. Health Unit. Your Mom was there when I started in the Fall of 1979. , It was my first job in Public Health and I needed to learn so much., Your Mom was so welcoming and kind to me, and she taught me a lot. At that time, my area was in Esquimalt and your Mom had the adjoining area of Vic West, so we did a lot of “well-baby” immunization clinics and other programs together. Also, we often had to share a work car, so we had many good chats on our way back and forth, and of course, since we both had children, that’s what we talked about! I remember hearing a lot about you two; she was very proud of you both. I sometimes dropped her off at your home in Rockheights for lunch and then would pick her up. I remember meeting your Dad too. He was a very nice man. Your Mom was soft-spoken, but she was fun. I still remember her little giggle, even though it is 40 years ago!! I left the Cook St. office for the Sidney one and your Mom and Dad moved to Ottawa, but I was fortunate to see your Mom a couple more times. To my incredible surprise, she was at my retirement party and I think it pleased her to no end to see how surprised and touched that I was that she was there. Another time she was in Victoria visiting friends and came to one of our retired nurses’ luncheons. Your Mom’s death really saddened me; much more than I would have expected it would. I hope you both are doing well and that her April celebration of life brings you and your families happiness and closure. By the way, a lovely obituary. Sincerely, Carolyn Reid
Dear Ian, Heather and family, we were with you through the live service. It brought back many thoughts and memories we shared throughout the years with my sister Joan. The service was lovely and many of the memories in your moms earlier years in nursing were unknown to me with the 15 year age gap we had. We shared in our love for our mother and our families. It was shocking and saddening to lose Joan so soon after our mother. We trust that in the years ahead family will continue to mean as much to you as it does to me. Sending our love and hugs!
Marg., Bill, Jody and Erin