PVN Remembers Katherine Willett

Katherine Willett was many things: a change maker, a beloved community member, and an outspoken advocate for family caregivers and seniors. The Patient Voices Network would like to take this time to acknowledge all the lives Katherine touched and the many changes she fought for as a volunteer in our health care system.

Most people look to others to create change. But it takes a strong, unique individual to take the lead, make the effort and show people the way to making this world a better place.

It is with the utmost respect and admiration that Patient Voices Network salutes the legacy and life of PVN member Katherine Willett. Katherine passed away on Friday, April 6, at St. Paul’s Hospital. A celebration of life will be held on May 27.

Photograph by Larry Wright/Burnaby Now

Over the years, Katherine brought her endless enthusiasm, wit and resolve to every activity. Whether it was lending her expertise as a passionate advocate with the Family Caregivers of BC, or being an active champion for seniors as part of the Burnaby Health Services Network, she was a force to be acknowledged and respected for the contributions she made.

Remembering Katherine Willett

Photograph by Larry Wright/Burnaby Now

There were many teams and individuals that were impacted by Katherine’s commitment to engagement, and her legacy of accomplishments will resonate for years to come. Our deepest sympathies go out to her friends, family, co-workers and fellow PVN members that were touched by her over the years. Those of us that supported Katherine in her patient engagement work within PVN thank her for the contributions she has made. She will be remembered fondly for her many achievements, her tireless advocacy work, and her exceptional spirit.

A Celebration of Life for Katherine Willet

Katherine’s community will come together for a potluck picnic to celebrate her life on May 27, from 1700 – 2000.

The celebration will take place at Stanley Park’s Second Beach covered picnic site (near the red fire engine). Amenities at the site include shelter, tables, counter with three cold water sinks (no cooking appliances or fridge), four electrical outlets (15 amp only), washrooms, and accessible pay parking stalls.

Please bring food to share, as well as dishes/utensils, beverages, and a chair/ blanket for yourself.

Donations will be accepted for a scholarship fund to honour Katherine.

For updates or questions about Katherine’s celebration, please contact cir5013@gmail.com with the subject line: A Good Gerontologist to Know.

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3 thoughts on “PVN Remembers Katherine Willett

  1. “Family Caregivers – Don’t Try it Alone!” is what you’ll see on Katherine’s t-shirt in the first picture above. She wore it at every opportunity to shine a light on the caregiver role. She was a champion, and we are grateful that she chose to be our “Networking Guru” (her choice on business cards) extraordinaire in her consulting role with us at Family Caregivers of BC. Through Katherine’s role with PVN she was able to link, collaborate and weave opportunities for caregivers into whatever was going on in the patient engagement world, never shy to ask for caregivers to be included as partners in care. We are all missing her terribly. Thank you to the Patient and Public Engagement Team for writing a brilliant and heartwarming post.

  2. Wanted to provide an update on the bursary fund at SFU in Katherine’s name. Katherine’s legacy in the senior services sector and throughout healthcare is undisputed and will live on.
    In order to facilitate Katherine’s commitment to mentoring early career gerontologists, a funding link has been set up through Simon Fraser University for a memorial bursary.
    As of June 25, 2018 the gifts to this fund total $2,380.00 Only $620 away from a three-year, named annual bursary. $17,620 away from an endowment. Thanks – Cheri Rauser
    Katherine Willett Bursary in Gerontology (SFU)
    Giving Link: http://bit.ly/KatherineWillettBursary

    Easy steps to donate:
    · click on the link above and the system will prompt to make a donation
    · SFU will handle all monies donated and provide tax receipts to donors.

    Need more information or an update on monies raised​​ ​?
    Email: cir5013@gmail.com

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