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Patricia Gagne
  • 68 years old
  • Date of birth: Apr 5, 1943
  • Date of passing: Dec 18, 2011
In the end all we have is love!


Mom was born April 5, 1943 in Salmon Arm B.C. to Murray and Kathleen Page.  Kathleen came to Vanderhoof in 1945 to stay with Murray's parents until he was discharged from the Army.  They both never left Vanderhoof and raised their family there.  In October of 1946, Leonard (Buch)f was born and another brother, Ronald (Ron) followed in Sept of 1952.  They had good times growning up in Vanderhoof, Mom often talked about walking across the Fraser River, helping out with the towing business, working at the grill, and of course the squabbles between the siblings.  Mom met some life long friends while working at Glenns Drive Inn.  John MacLean first met Mom one day when he was doing a delivery, Mom opened the backdoor and John was covered in grease and Mom said, "Don"t you dare touch me with those hands!"  Well the chase was on and Mom ended up with a messy uniform.
 
Mom went along with some friends to Goodridge, Alberta, for a wedding.  One of Dad's friends said, "I have someone you need to meet." They met again the following January and decided to get married.  They married April 8, 1967, it would have been their 45th wedding anniversary this April, it amazes me at the love they shared, and how they stuck it through thick and thin.  Mom worked at the McLeods store in Prince George until I was born on June 12, 1968. Three years later on May 20, 1971 my brother Murray was born.  The family was complete.
 
For Mother's Day one yearwe bought Mom a family ring,  Murray was not yet 3 years old, and very excited.  He somehow was able to keep the secret for what must have seemed like an eternity, until Mother's Day morning.  When he ran into my parents room, jumped on the bed and said, "Mommy we bought you a ring!"  She laughed and was indeed surprised! 
 
Mom was involved in the Girl Guides of Canada for over 30 years.  She got involved because the unit I was in needed a leader.  She always loved the meetings, and being able to teach and learn from the children.  I remember learning how to crochet right beside my Mom at a Brownie meeting, she didn't pick up the skill so easily but she sure tried.  We would have snowshoe parties at our house in Prince George where the girls would earn their snowshoeing badge.  There was always laughter, chilli,  and hot chocolate after a day out in the snow.  She was not a planner, so she was often getting the supplies together the day of the meeting.  I remember staying up late at night making name tags or keepsakes for a special event.  Leaving it to the last minute was how she worked best.  She thrived under the pressure and always finished what she said she would do.  She loved the children and she made many longtime friends.  She will be known to manny as Brown Owl, she always smiled when one of her "kids" would call her that outside of their meetings.  Mom was not fond of the overnight camps. she would offer to do activities throughout the day, but I know it was really because of the early morning wake up calls!!

  Another passion of Mom's was bowling.  She bowled three times a week for many years.  The weather did not matter she loved to go out and socialize with her friends.  I know she had many friends at the bowling alley. She was even able to go to Disneyland by winning a tournament!  Oh how excited she was!  Mom and Dad enjoyed Disneyland, Tijuanna, Sea World and Knotts Berry Farm.  In the pictures taken from that trip both Mom and Dad are smiling like school children!  Mom cherished all the friendships she made on the bowling lanes.  She laughed lots, cursed some, and once in awhile had a GREAT game!   Mom was an avid reader and had worked in Prince George at a small branch library on the Hart Highway.  As kids we often would walk to the library after school instead of taking the bus home.  Once at the library we could "help" stamp out books, read in a cozy corner or play outside or in the staffroom.  It must have been nice for Mom to have her children close and not have to worry about what we were getting into at home.  Mom always came home with stacks of books for herself and us, whenever they would go into town for a new shipment of books.  She also worked at the Grande Prairie Public Library, she would have been there for 25 years in September of 2011, if she hadn't have been so ill this fall.  She loved being at the library.  She would often offer to clean out the book drops on Christmas, she also set aside books and magazines for special patrons.  Oh how she complained about the computers but she could hunt and peck her way around a keyboard.  She would often go oout for lunch or dinner with her co-workers and inevitably she would spill on her her shirt.  Once in awhile she had a spare shirt, butmore often than not she would place her name tag stategically over the spill.  I wonder how many people wondered why her name tag was sideways or in the middle of her shirt?  She often had 3 or 4 books on the go at the same time, I have no idea how she kept them all straight.   Mom liked to be outside in nature.  She marvelled at all of God's creatures, even the mosquitoes that would torment her.  Mom was afraid of the water, and did not enjoy being out on the lake let alone a river.  She did venture out a few times in our old yellow boat.  It had a flat bottom and was very stable, but she would sit on the bottom of the boat and hang onto the sides for dear life.  Most of the time she would stay at the campsite drinking coffee, reading books or doing word puzzles.  She never complained about being left alone most of the day, she was always willing to hear our fish stories when we returned.  We as a family have had many a vacation and most have been in the North, she was very interested in the history of the north and would try and soak up all the information she could.  Life was always an adventure on vacation, whether it was seeing the Rockie Mountains, the lakes around Germanson Landing, or the 24 hour sun of the North.   Mom collected spoons and she had many!!  Friends and family would bring her spoons back from their travels.  Her spoon collection is incredible.  She has some hand carved wooden spoons, silver ones, and even a ceramic one.  She was so excited to receive these from her friends and family, it was like they were sharing a piece of the holiday with my Mom.  For that she was always grateful!   The last year or so she had slowed considerably.  We thought it was old age and arthritis catching up with her.  She never complained or let us know how she was really feeling.  She wanted to be strong for all of us.  One of my last conversations with her was on Saturday, Novemeber 28,2011.  She had just been transferred to the University Hospital from Grande Prairie.  She said she was fine and sounded good, she said she was fine (which was the standard answer) but she was bored out of her tree!!  She wanted Dad to bring her books and pencils.   She was more concerned about us and how we were managing.  The week  she passed away, when we knew it wouldn't be long, the nurse was rinsing out her mouth and Mom had a mouthful of water that she promptly spit on me!!  I laughed and said, "Hey now, spit at the nurse not me!"  She had a small smirk on her face as if to say na na na na na!  She never wanted anyone to worry about her, she was the strongest woman I know, protecting us to the very end.
Memorial Tributes
This tribute was added by Julienne Gagne on 21st December 2013

"Hi Mom,
Just know that I have never stopped missing you, I have learned to live with that hole in my heart.  It has gotten easier, the decisions we have made have been difficult but I know you would approve.  I just wish that I could actually talk them over with you in person.  I can't believe it's been two years, it seems like yesterday and forever ago at the same time.  I love you with all my heart and will forever and for always.  Have a Merry Christmas Mom!  We are taking care of Dad as best we can so don't worry about him too much ha ha ha!  Love you!"

This tribute was added by Julienne Gagne on 28th January 2012

"Hi Mom,
Just wanted you to know that I am OK.  I miss you like crazy, I wish you were here to tell me it's going to be fine, and like a nightmare this too will pass.  I know we will get through this, but it will be different!  I will love you forever and for always!!!"


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Julienne Gagne

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