Richard Gillis Obituary

Service Information

 
In Memory of

Richard Jerome Gillis

February 12, 1921 - March 10, 2013
Obituary

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Richard Jerome Gillis, much-loved father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and brother, who died peacefully on March 10th, 2013, at the young age of 92. A strong hard-working man with deep devotion and faith, he was surrounded by his loving family and staff at Inverness Consolidated Memorial Hospital. Richard "Richie" was born in Halifax, on February 12, 1921, to Duncan and Philomena (Moran) Gillis. As a child Richard moved to Glencoe (Upper Southwest Mabou) with his parents and siblings when they returned from Halifax to look after the Gillis farm, his grandfather Angus...
It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Richard Jerome Gillis, much-loved father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and brother, who died peacefully on March 10th, 2013, at the young age of 92. A strong hard-working man with deep devotion and faith, he was surrounded by his loving family and staff at Inverness Consolidated Memorial Hospital. Richard "Richie" was born in Halifax, on February 12, 1921, to Duncan and Philomena (Moran) Gillis.
As a child Richard moved to Glencoe (Upper Southwest Mabou) with his parents and siblings when they returned from Halifax to look after the Gillis farm, his grandfather Angus Peter (Aonghas Pheadair) being in poor health. Richard attended school at "Peter's (Roddy's) Bridge" Upper Southwest Mabou. As a young man he worked at John Angus Beaton's mill in Glencoe and on the construction of the breakwater in Port Hood. At age 21 he joined the war effort and was placed in the Royal Canadian Artillery, 1st Infantry, 2nd Field Regiment where he took part in the Invasion in Sicily, participated in several battles throughout Italy and France, and finally entered the Netherlands where his regiment took part in the Liberation of Holland, and participated in the "clean up" after the war ended in 1945. Later he was awarded six medals for his service overseas: The War Medal (1939–1945), The Canadian Volunteer Service Medal, The 1939–1945 Star, The Italy Star, The Medal of Remembrance (Thank You Canada), and The France and Germany Star.
Richard returned home to Upper Southwest Mabou where he met and later married his sweetheart, Mary Anna (Mamie) MacIsaac on September 6th, 1949. Theirs was a lifetime of true love and devotion to each other and their family. In 1951 they moved to Toronto, then Mississauga where they worked and raised a family with Richard working first with Canadian Wire & Cable and then for the Campbell Soup Company for twenty years.
A true Cape Bretoner, he and the family made the long drive every summer back to Glencoe, and in a 1975 Richard, Mamie and their six children returned to their beloved Cape Breton and built a home in Dungarry, near Port Hood. A year later they opened the Dungarry Grill where for several years they made the "best hamburgers" in town and worked until their retirement.
True to self, honest, hard-working and humble, Richard was highly regarded and respected by those who knew him and a wonderful role model as a husband and father to his children and grandchildren. His deep faith was evident in his strong family values, his dedication to his church and his tremendous pride and love for his wife and family. Richard was a member of Royal Canadian Legion, Angus L. Mac Donald, branch 132 and a prior member of Royal Canadian Legion branch 82, Port Credit Ontario. He was a member of St. Peter's Parish, Port Hood, and St. Joseph's Parish in Glencoe.
Richard is survived by children, Anne Marie (Norman) Cameron, Lower Sackville; Richard (Martha) Gillis, Dunmore; Sandy (Francene) Gillis, Port Hood; Joey (Darlene) Gillis, Dunmore; Duncan (Deanna) Gillis, Toronto; Christine (Duncan Arthur) Campbell, Mabou. He is also survived by his sister Margaret Mac Donell and Mary Conlon, and predeceased by his wife of fifty-nine years, Mamie (Mary Anna), brothers Joe, Danny, and Pat, and two infant children.
Sacred to Richard's heart, as well as his pride and joy were his grandchildren, Carolyn, Lisa, Suzanne, Chrisanna, Jeff, Alisha, Kim, Scott, James, Brennan, Andrew, Mairinn, Eilidh, Seonaid, and great granddaughter Evelyn.
Visitation at the Port Hood Funeral Home on Wednesday, March 13th 7-9 pm; Thursday, March 14th 2-4, and 7-9; with funeral mass Friday, March 15th, 12:00 noon, at St Joseph's Parish Church, Glencoe Mills, with Father Bernard Mac Donald as celebrant. Legion service to follow with burial in Parish Cemetery. In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to St. Joseph's Parish Cemetery Fund, Glencoe.On-line condolences may be made to www.invernessfuneralhome.com

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