Dorothy Eileen McGarvey in her 96th year passed away peacefully on May 15th at Victoria House in Orillia. Daughter of the late May and Herbert Giles of Sebright, Ontario, Eileen is survived by her brother Don Giles and predeceased by her brothers Ben, Albert, Doug, and Bill Giles.
Beloved wife of the late James Albert (Pete) McGarvey. Loving mother of Peter (Kay), Will (Lucia) and Doug (the late Susan.) Grandmother to Stefan, Aaron, Amber, Sienna, Fraser, Alex, James, and Ashton. Great grandmother to Jake, Drew, Isabella, Cole, Sawyer, Charlotte, Coral, Jade, Olivia, Deacon and Sawyer.
Eileen always met life with a smile despite having three rambunctious sons who in her early years of raising a family presented her with the challenge of finding a babysitter who would come for a second session. She approached life with optimism and a liberal attitude, open to all the changes during her lifetime. Any home she had was a gathering place for family, friends, and strangers that she joined Pete in hosting over the years. Eileen known as “Gramma Cookie” to her great grandchildren had a full and loving life surrounded by her family and friends.
One of the highlights of Eileen’s life was being presented to Queen Elizabeth II and the late Prince Philip on their Royal visit to Orillia in 1959. For the occasion, Eileen made her own dress which she discovered was almost identical in colour and style to the dress her Majesty was wearing that day.
As a young girl from a small village in Ontario it would only be in dreams that travelling the world would become a favourite part of her life. She and Pete travelled to Japan, Russia, England, Ireland, France, Italy, and Switzerland among other destinations. While living in Toronto she decided to continue her education as a mature student. Eileen completed a few missing credits needed for her high school diploma and became a student at York University working towards her BA.
Helping others also gave Eileen much joy and she volunteered her time teaching English as a second language and becoming an active part of many new Canadian communities. Other voluntary roles included Compassion Canada, St. Paul’s United Church, and the Leacock Associates. She was a long-time member of the Order of the Eastern Star.
Special thanks to the staff of Victoria House, Bayshore Nursing, and Dr. Archer for their kindness and compassionate care.
Eileen will be deeply missed by her family and friends. A celebration of Eileen’s life will be held at a future date. In lieu of flowers, donations would be welcome to either Orillia Soldiers Memorial Hospital or a charity of your choice and can be made through the Mundell Funeral Home (705)325-2231.
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