David William Gairns

David William Gairns

January 18, 1934 – October 2, 2018
Survived by his wife Phyllis, sons Doug (Nicuta) and Bruce (Monica), daughter Bonnie (Wilder), and his grandchildren: Antonius (Jaimie), Anita, Ben, Paloma, and great-granddaughter Naiya. Also mourning Dave’s passing are his brother Harry (Barb), cousins Bob (Carolyn) Campbell and Bev Zielke, niece Anne (John) Pousette, nephews Doug (Becky) and Stuart (Sandra) Gairns. “Uncle Dave” is also lovingly remembered by Rob and Ian Campbell. Dave was pre-deceased by his parents, Ruth and Charlie, granddaughter Christian, cousin-in-law Joe Zielke and sister-in-law Marg Gairns.
Dave was born in Vancouver, but at the tender age of 4 months, returned “home” to Atlin, B.C., a place that held a special place in his heart throughout his life. In the Fall of 1942, Dave and his family moved back to Vancouver, where he completed his schooling. Dave met Phyllis in typing class at John Oliver High School in 1950 and they soon started dating. Dave returned to the North, to Whitehorse, in 1953 and a year later Phyllis joined him. They were married at Whitehorse United Church in November 1954. Dave’s career opportunities kept him in his beloved North for the next 30 years. Dave worked for the Federal Government in Whitehorse, Dawson City and Yellowknife before joining the City of Whitehorse in 1971, first as City Clerk, later becoming City Manager. After a brief stint as Deputy Minister of Municipal Affairs for the Territorial Government, Dave moved to Castlegar, B.C. where he was City Manager for several years, retiring in 1989 to form his own consulting business. He retired completely in 2008.
Dave was a dedicated Rotarian for over 40 years, participating in Rotary Clubs in both Whitehorse and Castlegar. Dave was also active in the United Church in Whitehorse, Yellowknife, and Castlegar. As a member of the Yukon Automobile Association he proudly displayed his plaque on all his vehicles.
Dave will be remembered by his friends and family for his generous hospitality, his way with words, his dry sense of humour, his ability to build or fix almost anything, his absolute honesty and his love of dogs. Dave was very proud of his children and doted on his grandchildren. His legacy of service and integrity lives on in them. Dave was loved and he is missed.
A memorial for Dave will be held at the upper cemetery in Atlin at 1:30 pm on Saturday, June 29, 2019 followed by a celebration of Dave’s life and reception at the Globe Theatre at 3:30 pm. All are welcome to attend these events.


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