It is with great sadness we announce Janet passed away peacefully on Tuesday, January 23, 2024, at the age of 92, at home with family.
She is predeceased by her husbands Duncan Baker (2001) and Desmond McGirr (2013); her parents Josephine Gonzales Herrera (1992) and John Sullivan (1949); her siblings Helen Aanensen (2010) and Roger Sullivan (2014). Beloved mother to Donna Baker (Kevin McAlear), Douglas Baker (Pancy Cheung), and Doreen Baker (2007). Proud grandmother to Christopher and Emily Baker. She is survived by her cherished companion Russell Wood, several nieces and nephews, and many cousins.
Janet grew up in Trinidad, graduated Holy Cross Convent Secondary School with distinction and after a few jobs in Port of Spain decided to embark on a new adventure. In 1955, she boarded the SS Argentina, with two girlfriends, and headed for New York City. From NYC she travelled by Greyhound bus to Montreal where she would stay until 2013. Her first home in Canada was an apartment on Decarie, in Montreal, then once she married Duncan, in 1959, they moved to Ville d’Anjou to raise a family. Janet became a fully fledged Canadian citizen in 1966. She moved to Pierrefonds in the 1980’s, married Desmond June 3, 1989 and would stay on the West Island until her move to Toronto in 2013.
While she had a few jobs in Port of Spain before immigrating to Canada, she worked her entire career, once in Montreal, as a patent secretary for Swabey Mitchel Houle Marcoux & Sher. She loved the Swabey’s and the fact each patent application she worked on was so vastly different from the one before.
Once all her kids were grown and living on their own, Janet’s love for travel and live music was rekindled. She coaxed Des into vacations in Hawaii, London, BC, Eastern Canada and Barbados. Janet also started going on regular trips with her daughter Donna. Their adventures would take them to Spain, Italy, Tunisia, Barbados, Dominican Republic, Panama, Cuba, Paris, as well as, many spots in Quebec and Ontario. She also loved her musicals – especially Phantom of the Opera, Mamma Mia and Happy Days. That said, her absolute favorite show, however, was Evita because she got to see that with both her daughters while visiting Toronto.
It was her music that helped her through the hard times. With over 250 hours of music loaded onto her computer, she constantly had music playing in the background. Most days, if you were to visit Janet, you would find her singing or tapping her fingernails to the music. She will be remembered for flare and style, her laugh, and her zest for life.
Family and friends are invited to celebrate her life at the Turner & Porter Yorke Chapel, 2357 Bloor St. West, on Saturday, February 10, 2024. Visitation will be held from 2-3pm, followed by a Funeral Service held in the Chapel at 3pm. Later In the spring, there will be a Celebration of Life gathering in Montreal before she will be laid to rest in the Notre Dame des Neiges cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please consider sending a plant or making a donation to the Canadian Institute for the Blind, or the Canadian Cancer Society.