Obituary of Gail White (Mackie)
After an extensive stroke and surrounded by her family, Gail left us on Sunday, November 26, in her eightieth year.
Gail was quick to recognize the inner best in everyone, and was generous with her time and support. Vibrant and warm, kind and compassionate, she had an irresistible sense of humour and a unique spirit of adventure. She leaves her family and friends with many comforting–and entertaining–memories.
She was an avid reader, and relished good conversation on a wide range of topics. In recent years, these often took place at lunch, over a glass of Chardonnay. Her greatest joys were sharing love and laughter in the company of her family, and refreshing the many long-lasting friendships amassed over her lifetime. She kept in contact with her friends from school days in Renfrew as far back as kindergarten, and many summers at Round Lake.
Over the years of raising their family, Gail and her husband forged strong and lasting bonds with his friends across the city, with fellow pioneers in Kanata, and through her nursing career at the Ottawa Civic and Queensway Carleton Hospitals. Before her retirement, she spent a number of years as Director of Care at the Lanark Lodge Nursing Home.
An enthusiastic and respected volunteer, Gail lent her artistic eye, considerable writing skills, meticulous touch, and her steadfast integrity to all she undertook. Included in her positions of responsibility were membership on the Algonquin College Board of Governors (1975-82), and her Kanata neighbourhood associations. One of her most enjoyed volunteer experiences was with the Ottawa Savoy Society. Their production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s “Yeoman of the Guard” was the source of her favourite quote:
“Is life a boon?
If so, it must befall
That death, whene’er he call,
Must call too soon.”
Gail was devoted to and dearly loved by her family. Predeceased by her parents Andrew and Sherry Mackie and husband Ron, she will be deeply missed by sons Bill (Jane), Jeff (Selena), and grandson Liam, and by sister Wendy Engel (Bruce), nieces Kiersten (Chris) and Emily (Tim), and great nephews Miles and Leo. She will also be fondly remembered by her sons’ many friends, who were regarded as extended family. They were always welcome to gather at the Whites’.
The family is grateful to the Ottawa Emergency Services for their swift response, and to the Queensway Carleton Emergency and nursing staff. Their attention to Gail’s care and comfort ensured her peaceful passing.
A private celebration of Gail’s life and interment will take place in the spring. Those who wish to make a donation in her memory may consider the Queensway Carleton Hospital or Heart and Stroke Foundations.