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In Memoriam - Joanne Bertrand

Dear OCC Members,


It is with deep sadness and heavy hearts that we inform you of the sudden passing of Joanne Bertrand, our long-time administrative coordinator, on April 25, 2022. Below is her obituary.


We know this news comes as a shock to all of our members, ourselves included. Like many of you, some of us have known Joanne for years, and have relied on her kindness and dedication for support. Joanne’s energy and enthusiasm for the work we do to support caregivers was always inspiring, and in many ways she was the heartbeat of our organization. We will miss her terribly.    


Our deepest condolences go to Joanne's very tight-knit family. The family has chosen to have a private funeral for Joanne. We know you will all hold them in your thoughts during this difficult time. We have sent flowers on behalf of OCC.   


The family has asked that donations in memory of Joanne go to either the Ontario Caregiver Coalition or the Alzheimer's Society of Ontario. You may send messages to Joanne's niece, Alice, who will pass them on to the family at


We will hold an online memorial for Joanne at the start of the next General Members meeting on May 26th, 2022. More information will follow.


We appreciate your understanding and patience as we grieve Joanne’s loss and decide how we will proceed in the interim. 



OCC Board of Directors

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In Loving Memory of Joanne Bertrand

October 7th, 1945 - April 25th, 2022

Sadly our beloved Joanne passed peacefully in her sleep. A kind and caring soul who left us too soon and will be missed by all who knew her. We pray that she continues her journey hand in hand with loved ones already passed through to greener pastures in a great and peaceful beyond.


Joanne was born in Canada, spent her early years in England, before returning with her family to Canada.  Joanne later returned to England to attend Nursing School.  She was a dedicated person who spent her life contributing through her work in the charitable sector to the Schizophrenia Society, Alzheimer's Society and most recently to the Ontario Caregiver Coalition. Joanne was a valued member of the not for profit communities to which she contributed.  She was passionate about her work and her contributions will be felt now and in the future.


Joanne was a dedicated and loving mother to her children, Okan and Kayhan, and their partners Tina and Natasha.  She was incredibly proud of her family, including her grandchildren, Justin, Megan, and Oceane, and her great - grandchild, Evelyn.  Joanne, predeceased by parents Elizabeth and Victor, and brother Richard (Joanne), will be deeply missed by those who loved her, including her Aunt Iris (Uncle Ken), sister, Lesley (Richard), and brothers, Victor, Steve, and Tom.  Joanne was a beloved aunt, great aunt, and friend to many.  Joanne was a generous and kind person who always thought of others and put the needs of those she loved first.   


Joanne was at her happiest when she was with children.  She always loved to play with and read to the youngest in the family.  She also loved her time working at Treasure Island Toy store and was well loved and known by children in the community for her story time, where she was affectionately known as Grannie JoJo. In addition to Joanne’s enduring love for her family, she also spent many happy hours as a dedicated fan of her favourite football team, Liverpool, and the Toronto Maple Leafs, passions she shared with her sons.  She was also avidly involved in her fantasy football league.  


Anyone who would like to donate to a charity in her name please donate to the Ontario Caregiver Coalition, the Alzheimer’s Society, or any other charity of your choosing. 


We would also like to share a poem with you that Joanne was fond of:


If I Had My Life ...

If I had my life to live over,
I’d dare to make more mistakes next time.
I’d relax. I’d limber up.
I would be sillier than I have this time.
I would take more trips.
I would climb more mountains and swim more rivers.
I would perhaps have more actual troubles,
but I’d have fewer imaginary ones.
I’ve been one of those persons who never go es anywhere
without a thermometer, a hot water bottle,
a raincoat and a parachute.
If I had it to do over again,
I would travel lighter than I have.
If I had my life to live over
I would start barefoot earlier in the spring
and stay that way later in the fall.
I would go to more dances.
I would ride more merry-go-rounds.
I would pick more daisies.

By Nadine Stair

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