May 11, 1926 – June 8, 2021
Irene was born on May 11th, 1926 in Regina, Saskatchewan. She lived her early years with her family in Imperial, Biggar, Baljennie and Hughton in Saskatchewan until they moved to Matsqui, BC in 1944.
Irene completed her high schooling in Hughton before joining them. In February 1947 Irene began nurses training at Royal Columbian Hospital Nursing School and completed her three years of training in 1950 but stayed on at RCH until August 1950 and then nursed at Grace Hospital in Vancouver until January 1951.
Later in 1951, she went to nurse at Vancouver General Hospital. In February 1952 she began nursing at Willow Chest Centre TB hospital.
In 1960 Irene left Canada and went to work at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Florida and worked there until 1970 when she returned to Canada. In February 1971 she resumed her nursing career in Powell River, BC and there, in 1975, she married Teunis Thomassen of Powell River.
She retired from nursing while there, in December 1982, although because of her love for it, she nursed as a casual supervisor four more years and then retired permanently in December 1986.
After her husband passed away in 2011, she moved to Hallmark on the Park in Abbotsford in early 2012, to be near her only living family, the children of her only brother Ernie, and remained there until her Lord took her home on June 8, 2021.
Irene was loved by all. She was an inspiring woman who loved life and even though her health was failing in the last year or so, seeing her family was of great importance to her and to them.
She will be greatly missed.
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