June 2, 1935 – May 25, 2023
In Loving Memory ~
Denise Mallette (née Duhamel) passed quietly away at 87 years of age, on May 25, 2023.
She was born in New Westminster on June 2, 1935, one of five children of Rachel and René Duhamel. She was baptized and confirmed in the Catholic Church at St. Michael’s in Sapperton.
Denise received her schooling at Sir Richard McBride Elementary and New Westminster Junior High, with one year at Our Lady of Lourdes High School. She left school at age 15 and began working.
In 1955, she married Gerald Mallette in Banff, Alberta. There they became parents of two sons, Wesley and Wayne. In 1961 they emigrated to the U.S.A., living in Santa Maria and Antioch, California, before settling in South Lake Tahoe.
Here they were blessed with two more children, Della and John. Following a divorce, Denise came home to Canada in 1966. After living in New Westminster, Hope, Fernie and Robson, she and the two youngest children settled in Grand Forks where her mother Rachel and stepdad Willie had a hobby farm in Almond Gardens.
Denise worked for the Leader Potato Association and in later years she worked as a waitress.
Denise was a 37-year member of the local AA group. She often gave credit to this wonderful program for saving her life and for the serenity she achieved. Through the spiritual steps of AA, Denise was led back to the faith of her childhood.
Denise was seen around town either pushing, pulling, leading or chasing grandson Timothy as she provided his care while his parents worked. She also enjoyed reading, gardening, walking and the company of her furbabies.
She was predeceased by her father René Duhamel (1969), mother Rachel Gallant (1985), stepfather Wilfred Gallant (1994) and one brother, Florian Duhamel (1986).
Left to celebrate her life are her four children: Wesley and Wayne, both of Orting, Washington, Della (Brian) of Grand Forks; and, John of Salmon Arm, B.C.; three grandchildren, Amanda, Travis and Timothy (Sarah); one step-granddaughter, Pam; two great-grandchildren, Tristan and Annabelle; two sisters, Lillian Warlimont and Florence Window, both of Surrey, B.C.; brother Alfe Duhamel of Victoria, B.C.; many nieces and nephews; and, her beloved AA “family” of Grand Forks.
A Celebration of Life will be held this summer in Grand Forks. Please consider volunteering your time with an animal welfare or literacy organization in Denise’s honour.
“I want my family to remember me for the unconditional love I have for my four children and for my dear grandchildren. Also remember me with fondness, not sadness, as I have always remembered my own mother, Rachel. None of us are perfect, that’s not the point. Love is the point.” – Denise