Marian ‘Joan’ Wilkinson
(June 5, 1926 – October 23, 2011)
A woman of generous spirit, elegance and physical grace, Joan Wilkinson (nee Hepplewhite) had a smile that defied physics in its warmth and breadth. Born in Newcastle, England, Joan spent her early adult life pursuing a love of ballroom dancing, music, singing and theatre, as well as studying at night school. In 1953, Joan married Robert Wilkinson, a man with a unique sense of humour, two left feet and a love of motorcycles. The young couple immediately set off for Canada, settling in B.C. where they began raising their family. During those years, Joan began practising yoga and developed an interest in alternative medicine and nutrition, which had a strong influence on her and her children. In their 50’s Joan and Bob had the freedom to enjoy many years travelling the world, including China, Russia, South America, India, and a once-in-a-lifetime flight on the Concord. They spent their retirement years in Summerland, B.C., where they had spent almost every summer holiday since their first child was born. In 2003 Bob passed away and Joan moved to Victoria to be closer to family.
Joan passed away on the morning of October 23rd, 2011, after many years living with Parkinson’s disease. Her last days were spent listening to music and resting peacefully in the company of her family and friends. She is predeceased by her husband Robert and their daughter Elizabeth Anne, and will live on in the hearts of her children John (Patricia), Paul, Mary (Jaime), Win, Lucy (Robert), and three grandchildren, Miriam, Eleanora and Jayme.
The family would like to thank all of those who made Joan’s life as comfortable and rewarding as possible after she entered long term care. To the amazing staff of Humboldt House at Mount St. Mary Hospital — there are simply no words capable of expressing our thanks for the incredible quality of care she received over the past seven years. Your compassion and kindness, particularly over the last few weeks of Joan’s life, has taken our breath away.
To her wonderful companions Anne, Carol and Pauline, our heartfelt thanks for your unwavering commitment to Joan and the love you gave so generously.
And to friends of the family who gave so selflessly of their time to visit Joan, our eternal gratitude.