It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of Denis Joseph Bienvenu Guerard on January 9, 2023 in Etobicoke, ON. Denis died peacefully in his home surrounded by his wife Rena and family members, after a long and courageous battle with cancer. Denis was born on October 19, 1935 in Joly, Quebec to parents Louis Guerard and Marie-Anna (Rouleau) Guerard.
Denis met Rena, the love of his life, when she invited him to a school dance in the spring of 1950 and from that date forward they entered into a 73 year romance. Although they had no children, “Uncle Den” and his wife Rena became surrogate parents to a multitude of nieces and nephews and grand-nieces & nephews who idolized their uncle as a kind, compassionate, gentle, loving, humorous person who always lit up any gathering with his presence. His booming, infectious laugh instantly ignited every crowd he entered and his extended family and friends were drawn to him like moths to a flame. Uncle Den was an excellent sportsman who enjoyed playing multiple sports, many times alongside Rena. He loved the family cottage and spent countless hours teaching kids to water ski, fish and enjoy outdoor physical activities. He and Rena travelled extensively in their post-work life and made lasting friendships wherever they went. There was never a dull moment when the two of them were around.
Denis and Rena were parishioners of Our Lady of Sorrows church for many years. They attended daily Mass, sang in the choir, were active in many church activities and took joy in long-lasting relationships that they forged through their church. They played bridge, enjoyed outings and get-togethers at Tim Hortons where he became known as Mr. Fixit amongst the ladies of the church who would bring him watches, trinkets, mechanical devices and just about anything that had stopped working in their homes and he would happily work his magic.
Denis had a full and varied working career, starting out as a bricklayer and brick foreman in Toronto and culminating as a building inspector for the City of Toronto. Throughout his career he was considered to be an honest, intelligent, stable voice of calm and reason and he developed lasting friendships that sprang from his work career.
Denis will be dearly missed by his wife Rena, his many nieces and nephews, their extended families and many, many friends. Denis was predeceased by his mother and father, his brother Ralph and his sisters Helen and Louise.
The family gives special thanks to Dr. Zuraska and her staff, nurses and everyone at Toronto’s St. Joseph’s Hospital who took such amazing care of Denis throughout the years as he was battling the various cancers with which he was challenged. As well, they thank the Home Care staff who looked after him during his final days of palliative care at his home. We are so very appreciative of all of the love and care given by the whole group of nieces and nephews who took such special care and worked so hard over many years of love, support and fun. A special thanks to Gail Weiler for all of her love and support.
In lieu of flowers, we would ask that you direct your time and money to various good causes throughout your communities. We would ask that you please keep Toronto’s St. Joseph’s Hospital in mind for all of their wonderful care over many years.
Friends may call at the Turner & Porter Butler Chapel, 4933 Dundas St. W., Etobicoke (between Kipling & Islington Aves.) On Wednesday January 18, 2023 visitation will be held from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. A Funeral Mass will be held at Our Lady of Sorrows, 3055 Bloor St W, Etobicoke, ON M8X 1C6 on Thursday January 19, 2023 at 11 a.m.