Gladys passed away at Cairnsmore, at peace and pleased to be able to say good-bye to many family members and friends, knowing their voices and feeling their love.
Gladys was born at Chase River to Bessie Burnip Watson and Albert Watson. She grew up with five siblings, all of whom predeceased her except her sister Bert Simns. Also predeceasing Gladys were her husband James Carson, son Ron and his wife Jessie, son Ken, and grandchildren Kerrie and Garnett. Her ability to deal with these great losses and then carry on with her life was much admired by those who knew her.
Gladys is survived by her son Daryl (Barbara), grandchildren Cheryl (Steve), Charlotte, Elaine and Teresa (Gordon), step grandchildren, nieces and nephews, great grandchildren, and great nieces and nephews. She kept track of everyone, and loved the whole bunch.
Gladys married Jim Carson on Dec. 30 1933, in the middle of the Great Depression. Their first home was a small dwelling at the back of the barber shop in Nanaimo. Their circumstances improved when they moved to Duncan in 1936, where Jim got a job at Hillcrest Lumber company. They raised their three sons in a house on Robson Road, and when Gladys moved back to the Cowichan Valley five years ago, she enjoyed an occasional Sunday drive out to the old place. She lived all of her 103 years on the southern part of Vancouver Island, mostly in Duncan and Nanaimo.
Family and friends meant everything to Gladys. She recently had to give up sending cards to everyone because of her failing eyesight, but until then she sent a birthday card and a Christmas card to each of her friends and relatives. She enjoyed staying in touch, and could spend hours talking on the telephone with her loved ones
Gladys was a faithful member of the Nanaimo T.O.P.S.group until 2012. She looked forward to meeting her friends and making the coffee every week. She was thrilled when her T.O.P.S. friends gathered with her family to celebrate her 99th and 100th birthdays.
When she moved back to Duncan at the age of 98, she reconnected with the Women of the Moose, and enjoyed attending meetings until she was no longer able to leave her apartment. She gave up walking around the town of Duncan only nine months ago. Well done, Gladys.
Many thanks to Dr. Patricia Seymour and Dr. William Nielsen, and to all the caring staff at Cairnsmore who looked after Gladys in her final years.
“When tomorrow starts without me, don’t think of us apart,
For every time you think of me, I’m right here in your heart.”
At Gladys’ request there will be no service. Perhaps a random act of kindness for an elder would be a fitting tribute to her.