Giffen, Catharine Jean

It is with tremendous sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved mother, Catharine J. Giffen (nee Lewis). Her family will remember her for her limitless love, kindness, faith, wisdom, courage and stoicism.

Catharine enjoyed a life of 88 years filled with laughter, long walks, friends, and family.  Dedicated as much to healthy living and positive thinking as she was to her family, Catharine was a proficient gardener, decorator and friend to all animals. She was “Dancing Grandma” to her grandchildren, an age-defying “68” to her grown children no matter which birthday she’d just previously celebrated.  She was supportive of our goals and celebrated our victories, and each visit with her would end with a request to “Send me a quick note to let me know you got home safely”.

Dear Mom, please send us a quick note to let us know you got home safely.  We will love you and honour you forever.

Devoted wife of husband Garth, a wonderful father and husband who predeceased Catharine.  She will now return to his side for eternity.

Survived by her children Bradley (Liliana), Randall (Silvia and family), Brenda and her husband Michael.  Grandmother of Ajala (Shane) and Jordan, Great-Grandmother of Hunter, Juliette and Lachlan. Special thanks to the caring and attentive medical team at Collingwood General & Marine Hospital Surgical Wing whose kind and attentive expertise brought comfort to Catharine and to each member of her family.

A private, family service will be held at Lakeview Cemetery at a later date.

As your expression of sympathy, donations to the Collingwood General & Marine Hospital would be appreciated and may be made through the Ferguson Funeral Home, 48 Boucher St. E., Meaford, ON   N4L 1B9 to whom arrangements have been entrusted.   www.fergusonfuneralhomes.ca.

Details

Private Family Service

Donations to the Collingwood General and Marine Hospital
Make a donation in memory of Catharine Jean Giffen


Memories & Messages of condolence

  1. Isabelle Ridd
    Friday, June 24, 2022

    Dear Brenda and family,

    With heartfelt sympathy, please know
    that you are in my thoughts and prayers.
    Your Mom and Dad were wonderful, caring neighbours to Bill and I
    on Edwin Street.

    Sincerely Isabelle

    Reply
  2. Wayne & Darlene Westlake
    Saturday, June 25, 2022

    Brenda & Michael and family,
    When we think of your Mom, we first see her smile. She had this glow about her and such a beautiful sense of calmness. She was a “real” Mom, with a wonderful, kind, realistic look on life. Always positive in her thoughts. There was something about Catherine. Something hard to explain. Something you just can’t put your finger on….a blessing to all her knew her. A very big blessing to her family that will miss her dearly.

    Reply
    1. Brenda Giffen
      Thursday, July 21, 2022

      Darlene and Wayne,

      Thank you for your kind words. You were also a special part of her life too even though you did not see each other as often as she would have liked because of distance. She often asked for updates and was always pleased to hear that you and your family are well.

      Yes, she was a devoted Mom, just like you Darlene and my Dad was so much like Wayne, even to the same wit and incredible building knowledge and skill.

      Thank you for your kindness always and we all will remember the birds as she passed and the lessons from her stoicism.

      Every best wish to you all!

      Reply
  3. Pat & Paul Chiappetta
    Saturday, June 25, 2022

    Brenda, Michael and family,
    We so enjoyed hearing you tell stories about your mom, her love of gardening, nature and her positive outlook on life. We recall you telling us about your mom and dad going out dancing every weekend in their younger days. You recently sent Paul and I a video of your mom joyously dancing a little jig- she was having so much fun. We’re sure she is dancing now and she’ll send you a message to say she’s alright.
    Love,
    Pat and Paul

    Reply
    1. Brenda
      Thursday, July 21, 2022

      Pat and Paul,
      Thank you for your kind words. Mom always enjoyed updates to know that you and your family were well and she enjoyed meeting you the occasions that you were able to be together.

      Yes, Mom and Dad enjoyed their lives and while they were together, they had plenty of fun so that Mom had many happy memories to reflect upon after his passing.

      We wish you both the best and again thank you. Hope to see you both soon.

      Reply
  4. Fran Levesque
    Monday, June 27, 2022

    We are so sad to hear of Catherine’s passing. We enjoyed her company so much. Catherine will truly be missed by all of us. Guy is just saying that she enjoyed getting the cucumbers for her relish and in return always shared a jar of amazing relish.

    Reply
  5. Pauline Gallagher
    Tuesday, June 28, 2022

    Brenda, Michael and Family:
    Catherine lived on my same floor, but she really lived in my heart. She exemplified everything that was the very best in a human being. Meeting her was a joyful experience. A sign on her door “Faith Can Move Mountains” spoke to her deep spirituality. She lived it.
    Catherine collected my mail when I travelled, and always had food essentials ready for my return. I now have the honour of watering her veggie garden on our balcony.
    She must have worked with the angels, because every year, those plants grew in strength and beauty (like Catherine the planter). Catherine, you will never be forgotten.

    Reply
    1. Brenda
      Thursday, July 21, 2022

      Pauline,
      Thank you for your kind words and for always your cheer!

      Yes, she was always a caring person who I’m sure would like you to have her “Faith Can Move Mountains” of a reminder of her Faith and of her stoic strength!

      Thank you for looking after her garden this year, after her passing. She would also be pleased that it is being nurtured and enjoyed by you and whomever else would like to enjoy the vegetables. We have left items for decorating so that you will have annual reminders of her friendship and cheer. She enjoyed dressing up the building and her apartment in seasonal decorations.

      We miss her, but her strength, optimism and reminders continue to strengthen us all!

      Reply
  6. Pat May
    Tuesday, June 28, 2022

    We had lots of wonderful chats together. She had a great sense of humour. She was always kind and helpful to others. We all miss her.

    Reply
    1. Brenda
      Thursday, July 21, 2022

      Pat,
      Mom would appreciate your kind words as we do. She always enjoyed your conversations, the laughter and your kindness. Thank you for always appreciating her. You were a good neighbour friend to her and we appreciate and care about you too.

      We wish you and your family every best wish and I will see you soon.

      Reply
  7. Brenda gill
    Tuesday, June 28, 2022

    Catharine was such a beautiful lady, we had many chats when she dropped into my workplace, we usually shared the same ideas and opinions , she always laughed when I would say, Brad’s voice was his identification!!, until we meet again my friend, condolences to Brenda /rad and families

    Reply
    1. Brenda
      Thursday, July 21, 2022

      Brenda,

      Thank you so much for your kind thoughts and for being someone who could laugh with Mom and have enjoyable conversations. You are so right about Brad’s remarkable voice. Yes, Mom was a lovely lady. We miss her.

      Best wishes to you and to your family. Thank you for posting your memories for us to enjoy reading.

      Reply
  8. Mike Robertson
    Tuesday, June 28, 2022

    To Brenda, Michael and all the family, my sincere condolences.

    Reply
    1. Brenda
      Thursday, July 21, 2022

      Hello Mike,
      It is so good to hear from you. I can still remember the laughs that we all had when you were neighbours with Mom and Dad. They always enjoyed your company.

      Mom’s happiest times were from her life with Dad in Meaford, but Mom always was strong and saw the bright side of everything even after he passed 12 years ago. She died with peace and dignity. That was a blessing to her and to us all.

      Best wishes to you. Thank you for your kind thoughts.

      Reply
  9. Mary Hutterer
    Tuesday, June 28, 2022

    Dear Brenda, Brad and family,

    your mother was such a beautiful friend to me; who shared her many stories, laughter and endless dancing jigs… in turn who brought much joy to my life and those who lived at Sunset.
    Catharine spoke endlessly about her love for her family and her beloved Garth; and was such an inspiration to many. A beautiful soul I will always remember and hold dear to my heart.
    May God Bless

    Reply
    1. Brenda
      Thursday, July 21, 2022

      Mary, you breathed life to enrich all of the residents’ daily lives at Sunset Suites. As a result, you helped reassure families that our loved ones were well taken care of, listened to, and their lives were happy with all of the fun events and the strong sense of community that you nurtured.

      You were a blessing then and always have been, no matter how long in between our visits. You were always there for Mom in every way. You will always be in our hearts as you were in Mom’s. You were and always remain our very special friend and we are grateful for you.

      Every best wish to you and to your family, dear Mary!

      Reply
  10. Annie Leal
    Wednesday, June 29, 2022

    After meeting Catharine at Sunset Suites, I discovered that I had worked with her sister-in-law Joyce in the late fifties and early sixties at Bell and later on when our family bought property on Manitoulin Island she was able to fill me in on the history of the place. We had many good conversations and will miss that as well as her great smile and positive outlook.
    Our deepest condolences to all of her family.

    Annie and Bob Leal

    Reply
    1. Brenda
      Wednesday, July 20, 2022

      Thank you Annie. It just shows how small the world is that you have such a long history with Aunt Joyce and that after so many years, you and Mom became neighbours.

      Wishing you, Bob and your family every best wish.

      I am thankful that you were a part of Mom and Aunt Joyce’s life in such a lovely way!

      Reply
  11. Carole Hawley
    Thursday, June 30, 2022

    To the Giffen Family,
    Catharine was a great friend and support for me which put my family at ease, knowing she was just a few steps away. We certainly had a few giggles as we ladies do.
    Carole and the kids, Michelle and Michael

    Reply
    1. Brenda
      Wednesday, July 20, 2022

      Dear Carole,
      You were such a dear friend to Mom. I think that you were both soul sisters. There was such a special bond between you and it was so nice to hear Mom laugh with you and to know that you were just living steps away from each other. It’s by no coincidence that you lived so nearby to each other.

      Wishing you, Michael and Michelle every best wish and thank you for your friendship and always good cheer! Thank you for sharing your thoughts. See you soon.

      Reply
  12. Glenn Caswell
    Friday, July 1, 2022

    We would like to send your family our sincere condolences. My husband and I are the lucky people to live in the home on Edwin St where your family lived. It’s a wonderful place and I hope my gardens would meet with Catherine’s approval. If memories call you back, please stop in. Bev and Glenn

    Reply
    1. Brenda
      Wednesday, July 20, 2022

      Thank you Glenn,
      Oh, I wish that we knew that you were the people still living in Mom and Dad’s house that they fully renovated on Edwin. So many times, Mom and I would slow and stop to see the immense changes in the trees and to see how well you have preserved the home. It looks absolutely lovely! I know that she would have loved to have seen the inside, especially the lovely kitchen with the little sitting nook and the pine wood ceiling with the embedded halogen lights. Ahh.
      Wishing you and your family many more happy and healthy years ahead. Perhaps I will drop by one time on the chance that you are home to thank you and to say hello.

      Reply
  13. Merilda Breathat and family
    Friday, July 1, 2022

    Dear Brad, Randy and Brenda

    Your mom was a beautiful lady and a great friend who will be missed by all of us. We will always treasure our memories of your family at our cottage. Your mom and dad are sailing together again.

    Reply
    1. Brenda
      Wednesday, July 20, 2022

      Thank you Merilda,
      Yes, we certainly loved our time with you, Doug and all of your family up on L. Mindemoya. Oh, we have such cherished memories, for sure! Lots of laughs and lots of precious, seemingly ordinary moments, just enjoying an afternoon on your swing bench.
      We were saddened to know that Doug passed.
      Yes, we like to believe that Mom and Dad are off on their next adventures together!
      Every best wish to you and to your family, Merilda.

      Reply
  14. Pat /Wayne
    Thursday, July 7, 2022

    Brenda, Brad, Randy and families our condolences, hearts, thoughts and prayers are with you all. Wayne and Pat Cann

    Reply
    1. Brenda
      Wednesday, July 20, 2022

      Dear Pat and Wayne,
      Thank you so much for writing and for your kind thoughts.
      You, your Mom, Dad, and the rest of your family are an integral part of our memories of really fun, happy times from our time at the chalet.
      Best wishes to you all.

      Reply

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