Gillard, Evie

Written by Submitted

November 23, 1924 – February 6, 2017
Mom was born Nov. 23, 1924 and usually an obituary, when wrote, the name comes first. Mom’s name kept changing through the years – she was Evie Louise, Evelyn Louise and when we finally saw her birth certificate she was Louisa Eveline.
Imagine her parents spent some time deciding on their baby daughters’ name but in the end Mom just named herself.
Words are so powerful and strong with the ability to love, praise or be ignored. Her husband Claud was such a kind, precious wonderful man and those words described her love of her husband until he left her side after 65 years of marriage.
Her great grandson Xavier Cole Samuel was also Mom’s “precious” . Hayden Ian and Declan Reid Gibson would be so loved by Gramma, but they were born when Mom was changing but her love would have been shown for her two little great grandsons if she would have had the ability to do so.
Mom had open heart surgery in Edmonton in 1961. Our health care system through the years has been taken for granted and very abused.
Our generations now do not realize the gift we have been given. Dad had to make yearly payments for her heart surgery directly to the surgeon.
When the cattle were killed by the electrical storm or the crop hailed out, this strong man stood and cried as how was he to make the payments to the man who saved his wife’s life.
I asked Mom what the cost of her surgery was – without any hesitation her reply was $2000. The valve today would be $16,203.49. That would not be the cost of the procedure today.
By-Pass surgery costs $70,000 – $200,000 and more. The cost of a typical heart valve replacement range from $5000 – $7000.
Was Mom’s answer right? I do not know – but it was the first year of this kind of heart surgery. Another heart surgery was to be done once again year’s later.
Mom was a woman when a woman was a woman only when wearing a dress. Sadly that was not passed onto her daughter Rondi Rovensky. One can never give up on your ideals in life.
Along came Dr. Noelle O’Riordan, Mom’s true soulmate in style. Once they got done sharing how beautiful they both looked in their dresses they then could move on towards the medical side of life.
Noelle, you thought being a doctor was most important to the patient but in Mom’s case – no, it was all about the dress.
Thank you for your special way with both of our parents.
Dalana Lane Rovensky, Kara Lynn Gibson and Jaron Reid Rovensky did not know their Gramma before she had her stroke.
What they did know was that she was very strong and determined. She would sit on the bed and put a paper clip, penny and safety pin in a medicine cup over and over.
That was 40 years ago and today it is known that if some action is repeated the brain has the ability to take over in another area.
Mom knew this.
Mom told Jaron she walked around her bed over and over long before the nurses came to get her up the first time.
Anyone that asked “How are you Evie?” her answer was 101 per cent.
When I was sitting with mom at the end I asked, are you having any pain?  No, I’m comfortable, I’m 100 per cent.
I knew it would not be long before she left us as she lost one per cent.
Mom loved her son Bryce Arthur Gillard and me but her heart had room for more. That is where her nephews and nieces fit in.
Whenever they came to town, a visit was made along with goodies and hugs.
Mom gave me a gift at the end as her “Sherri” sat with me as she left us for her wonderful man.
Very few days went by that she didn’t ask where is Daddy at?
The wonderful staff whom Mom loved so much, would assess. Then based on where Mom’s mind was, answer he was out fishing at the dam or he was in your heart and gone to heaven. Her reply would be “I just can’t believe that”.
The gift of dementia was to relive this loss and pain over and over.
Now you know she loved her husband, children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces, nephews, siblings and, of course, the Long Term Care staff.
Renie Wadstein was her faithful sister that came twice a day to visit and just be.
Our hearts and love go to her as she is the last of the siblings. This was met with Aunty’s humour. “I always wondered who would be the last to go, now I know”.
All of Aunty’s sisters, brother, brothers-in-law and sister-in-law and our Uncle Harry (Aunty’s husband) and great niece, Michelle Guse were taken from Aunty.
Mom was a true farm wife, so proud of her home, canning, gardening and the chicken which she canned  or sold eggs for her personal income.
But now Mom had another great love in her life – her stuffy, a big white bunny.
I did not know how strong her love and protection was of this rabbit until I was making her bed and tossed the rabbit by the ear into the chair. I was strongly reprimanded.
I was telling my co-workers about Mom reaming me out and yes, they too. all had a bunny story to share.
I placed the bunny by Mom’s side and Heather phoned the next day to see if the bunny was to go with Mom – and yes, the Bunny and Mom are both together.
Thank you Mom for being you!
It takes a village to raise a child and it takes a village to watch over our seniors and protect them.
Bryce & Mona Gillard
Jack, Rondi Rovensky & Family
Respecting Evie’s wishes there will be no funeral service.
In memory of Evie, donations can be made directly to the Alberta Heart & Stroke Foundation, 100-119, 14 St. NW, Calgary, AB, T2N 1Z6. Heather Caseley of Coronation Funeral Home, P.O. Box 358 Coronation, Alberta, TOC 1CO, 403.578.2928, was entrusted with the care and funeral arrangements.
Condolences can be forwarded to the family by visiting our website at

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