Cover photo for Brett Gilchrist's Obituary
Brett Gilchrist Profile Photo
1964 Brett 2023

Brett Gilchrist

February 25, 1964 — June 9, 2023

Just after midnight on June 9, with his love gently rubbing his forearm, and following a visit by his entire family, Brett played his final hand against cancer.   After a nearly two year battle, with Brett in the lead most every day,  his cancer died in this final play while Brett himself continued on peacefully to eternal paradise.   He was prepared to be met by his Grandpa, Uncle Beatty, Aunt Mary, John and Diana, Snoopy, Mandy, Sam, Bimbo and so so many others who he thought of so often as he anticipated this journey.

Family was Brett’s absolute everything and daily life long quest.   At his final gentle breath he was survived by his lifelong fishing buddy and eternal soul partner Jane; his absolute pride and joy Ryan, his son who he talked about, and talked to, constantly; and his little girl Megan who he thought of, and longed for, every single hour of every single day.  He is also survived by his absolutely adoring step kids.  His daughter Cynthia who referred to Brett as our family anchor and who loved every story he told. She counted on him for her security as she walked  through her teenage years.   Also, by his little boy Keenai who looked to him as his dad; the absence of genetics always surprising as Keenai and Brett were cut from the very same cloth.  Their deep connection could be seen in everything they did.   He has also left a permanent mark on his big boy and close buddy Katsua who he guided and loved as his dad and who he respected deeply as a young man.   He is also survived by Jane’s step daughter Oolooloo who he supported and loved unconditionally.

Brett is also survived by his immediate family of 59 years; his loving parents Ron and Sherry, who visited him regularly during his illness for laughs, memories and treats; his very worthy cribbage opponent. devoted caregiver and confidant his sister Dale; his baby sister Laurie and his brothers in law Bruce and Bryan.

Brett lived his life with an unparalleled resilience and an endearing childlike zest for life.  My daughter says he was a teenager at heart and could sit for hours listening to them, advising, teaching lessons by telling stories, and making us all laugh uncontrollably.   Brett lived and spoke with unwavering authenticity.  He owned his truths and told his story, his joys and his heartaches.   He was deeply proud of his 30 years roofing, his heavy equipment licenses and time as a young man in the military.  Very much a sports enthusiast he also loved his days refereeing hockey and his daily conversations about the game with his son Ryan.   Close to his heart always was his many hours spent at Dragonfly golf course in Renfrew and the many baseball teams he was on.  Very close to Brett’s heart always was his life lived out west, his days skiing and time starting his young family there with his first love Eileen.   In the last several years he wanted very much to return to “his favourite place” on muskrat lake and it made him so happy to be there -  where he will always now stay.

Brett is who you wanted to be with if you were scared alone at night, needed rescuing  or you just needed a soft heart to just listen.  As his Keenai said - tough on the outside and soft in the middle.  He loved all “his”people with an absolute open glowing heart; his life long buddies who he spoke of often, his in-laws Julie and John, and all his neighbours in Ottawa who looked for him daily sitting out front.   He frequently spoke of those who were always there for him In his life when times were hard. These folks never ever left his mind or his stories and meant the world to him until his final days.   He  lit up every single room he walked into with candid conversation and regular how ya doin’ to strangers - he left an impression absolutely everywhere and could be heard saying “fair to middlin’ “ daily on his random encounters that he enjoyed so much.   Since his last breath,  I have heard him described more times than I can count as having the biggest heart ever - which says it all.

There will be no resting for Brett.  While I am confident he is fully at peace,  for anyone who knows Brett you know he never sat down for long so Brett as an angel will be very very Happily busy.   Be you my love, as we said daily - you with angel wings and an entire world of good deeds waiting to be done.  He always said there are no bad days just bad moments so live your bad moment and get on with your day - when I reminded him it wasn’t always that easy

He would quickly remind me- well baby ain’t Fuk all for a big operation like us - let’s go.  I know he would want all his friends to remember that.
If you want to remember Brett toast him with a coffee and baileys (or several), an ice cap with only a plastic straw,  maple syrup on absolutely anything, a good game of bingo or a random act of kindness.
I know he loved you all.

A heartfelt thank you to Dr. Hacker and Jessy who are solely responsible for the incredible memories, experiences and the way Brett was able to live the past several months.  We will never forget you in our story.   Also thank you to the incredible care from Dr Wong and the team at the General Hospital and his final nurse Callie who handled his final moments with absolute grace.

A Celebration of Brett’s life will take place on Thursday, July 13th, 2023 from 2pm to 4pm at the Tubman Funeral Homes Garden Chapel, 3440 Richmond Rd.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Brett Gilchrist, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Celebration of Life

Thursday, July 13, 2023

2:00 - 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

Tubman Funeral Homes - Garden Chapel Nepean

3440 Richmond Road, Nepean, ON K2H 8H7

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