GITTINS, Kenneth - (Sunrise July 3, 1943 - Sunset November 29, 2021) -
In his 78th year, peacefully at home, Ken went to be with the Lord with family by his side.
Son of the late Joseph Stanley and Hilda Madge Gittins, Ken is survived by his wife, Maria (nee Brus), daughters Caroline Beemer (Bradley) and their children Kimberly, Alex and Kayla (Dan) and Alison Hughes (Peter) and his grandchild Peter Kenneth.
He will be lovingly remembered by the extended Beemer and Hughes families, his many in-laws and their families. Ken will be missed by his closest friends, Ann and Ben Breukelman and their family. He will also be missed by his cousins and long-time friends here and in England.
Born in Hendon, England, Ken got the travel bug in his early twenties and left home for Australia and New Zealand to work. More than a decade of travel took him to over 30 countries. His favourite stories were about his time in India, Nepal and Thailand. By his thirties, he had settled in Toronto and loved living on Roehampton.
Ken met Maria at the Bombay Bicycle Club in the city. They married in 1975 and celebrated their 45th anniversary last December 19th. Their first home was “the shoebox” in Richmond Hill and they later settled in Aurora. Together, they welcomed Caroline and Alison, whom he cherished deeply. Ken passed along his love of live concerts, Blue Jays games, camping (especially at Sandbanks), fishing and taking the “scenic route” with his children and grandchildren. He loved visiting Caroline’s family up north exploring the outdoors and fishing. He was grateful to live with Alison and Peter and was best friends and Papa to Peter Kenneth. They enjoyed looking at cars, learning about dinosaurs, drawing and reading Richard Scarry books together. Family time was cherished.
Ken was a longtime member of the Richmond Hill Community Christian Reformed Church. He loved volunteering with dinner club in their early years, his small group and many other opportunities to support his church community. A true Brit, he also enjoyed services at Trinity Anglican Church in Aurora.
Ken enjoyed many years of working as a draftsman and plumber- especially working in Fort McMurray, Vancouver, Montreal, Calgary and London, England when he moved back for a time to care for his mother. In retirement, Ken kept busy working part time at Rona and later Rikos. He was a longtime volunteer fundraiser for Heart & Stroke, loved volunteering for Track3 and was generous with many charities that were meaningful to his family, including Holland Bloorview Foundation. Ken loved going to aquafit, though he did more singing than swimming and also loved participating in the Newmarket PhotoClub. He never missed an opportunity to be social and make friends.
Special thanks to Dr. Khalil and her team, Dr. Raghavan, Dr. Andani, and Ken’s many other specialists including the Heart Function Clinic at Southlake, who compassionately looked after his care for several years. We are so grateful to the many home care professionals who supported him. Your kindness, care and support gave him much hope and more time with family.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Holland Bloorview Foundation, Heart & Stroke or a charity of your choice.
Arrangements and livestream service details are entrusted with Thompson Funeral Home, Aurora.