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DONALD K. GORDON  Obituary pic


Date of Passing: May 20, 2015

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DONALD K. GORDON September 27, 1935 - 2015 We regret to announce the death of Donald K. Gordon on Wednesday, May 20, 2015 at Victoria General Hospital, Winnipeg. Son of the late T.Z. and Lily Belle Gordon, DK leaves to mourn his wife of 50 years: Lucinda, their daughter Lisa, son Kevin, daughter-in-law Natasha, grandson Miles, sister Joyce Townsend, brother-in-law Lloyd, niece Diane, nephew Chris, cousin Yvonne Maitland, and lifelong friend Keith Ellis (Zilpha). He will be sorely missed too by Keith Barrett (Jasmine), Adolph Edwards (Peggy), Owen Jefferson (Minkey), Al Matthews (Linda), Carole Jones, PJ Patterson, Lloyd Tait, Patsy Edwards, Violet Griffith, Hyacinth Lindsay, the Sandifords, Stephensons, Bryans, Flakes, Barber-Duecks, Koths, Jones, Adams, Campbells, Cookes, Raymonds, and by his in-laws and extended family: Rosemays, Smiths, Harrises, Millettes, Shades. DK attended Calabar High School in Jamaica, and earned his Ph.D. (1969) in Hispanic Studies at the University of Toronto. He was a member of the Department of French, Spanish, and Italian at the University of Manitoba from 1970 to 2001, and was named Professor Emeritus at the U of M in 2004. He enjoyed the friendship and scholarship of his departmental colleagues and the exchange of ideas with students, being proud of plaques given to him by graduating classes in 1979 and 1992. He served on the UMFA Board, U of M senate, and as Secretary-Treasurer of the Canadian Association of Hispanists. He took great satisfaction in the gratitude expressed by many students he encouraged, and sometimes assisted, to attend university. Professor Gordon's last book was Language and Racism Historicity. He was also the author of two books in Spanish: on Juan Rulfo, and Quince Duncan, of chapters in four books, consultant for two, and authored articles in major scholarly journals, writing also for the popular press. He was a dedicated member of the Afro-Caribbean Association of Manitoba (President 1972), whose philosophy of oneness, and seriousness of purpose to effect change, he cherished. Much of his community service and social life revolved around ACAM where he has numerous friends. For ACAM he produced an album of folk music by the Afro-Caribbean Singers: "Sun, Spirit and Soul," later re-issued as a CD; initiated the Black Historical Calendar; and did a video "An Audio-Pictorial History of ACAM". Prof. Gordon (ably assisted by the late Julian Robinson, and by Austin Stephenson) served as Jamaican Honorary Consul at Winnipeg from 1981 to 1999, and liked the collegiality and work, of the Consular Corps of Winnipeg. In 2000, the government of Jamaica conferred on him the Order of Distinction "in recognition of ". . . service to the Jamaican community in Canada". Among other awards were a plaque from the Afro-Caribbean Association of Manitoba (1993), a plaque from the Jamaican Association of Manitoba (1999), and a Hall of Fame award from the Black Educators' Association of Manitoba (2005). He was a much sought-after public speaker, and all those who knew him will miss his sense of humour. In his community, DK had been a soccer coach of a championship team, and enjoyed the friendship of his neighbours over very many years. He had great fun playing with his tennis pals in Winnipeg, and his table tennis pals in Langley. With the encouragement of family and friends, he faced up to his physical difficulties such as living with a tracheostomy and PEG tube, with equanimity. He was highly appreciative of the skilled medical attention that he received from Dr. Mark Barker, Dr. Les Garber, Dr. David Manusow, Dr. Jonathon Werier, Dr. Donald Duerksen, Dr. May Chin Dr. Russ Stogryn, Dr. Murray McFadden, Dr. Michael Dobrowski, Dr. Jennifer Rahman, Dr. Don Shirley, the courtesy of their staffs, and the assistance from the staff of the Manitoba Home Nutrition programme and Langley Memorial Hospital. DK treasured his wife Lucinda, and their children Lisa and Kevin. He also cherished the friendship of his many friends in Winnipeg, Langley, other parts of Canada, Jamaica, the U.S. (especially Tampa), England, Africa, and other areas of the world. A service of remembrance will be held on Thursday, May 28 at 2:00 p.m. at Neil Bardal Funeral Centre, 3030 Notre Dame Avenue, across from Brookside Cemetery, with Father Henry Falconer, and Rev. John Wortley, officiating. Donations in DK's memory may be made to a charity of your choice. In accordance with his wishes, DK will be cremated. NEIL BARDAL FUNERAL CENTRE 204-949-2200
Publish Date: May 25, 2015

DONALD K. GORDON Peacefully on Wednesday, May 20, 2015, with family by his side, Donald passed away at the Victoria Hospital at the age of 79 years. A memorial service will be held at 2:00 p.m., Thursday, May 28 at Neil Bardal Funeral Centre, 3030 Notre Dame Avenue, across from Brookside Cemetery. Longer obituary to follow. NEIL BARDAL FUNERAL CENTRE 204-949-2200
Publish Date: May 22, 2015

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on May 25, 2015

Condolences & Memories (17 entries)

  • I was just thinking about all of you. It's been years since Dumbarton Street when I babysat Lisa and Kevin. Sorry to see that DK has passed. I remember the table tennis in the basement with the Dr. Makes me smile! Take care. Lucinda I have never eaten chicken wings like the ones you made! - Posted by: Dayle Waring nee Coles (Neighbour friend) on: Nov 24, 2020

  • We were deeply saddened to hear of your loss. He was a great scholar, and more importantly, a great friend. Memories of the kindness and warmth that he shared with so many is such a wonderful legacy for a life well-lived. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family. - Posted by: Anne-Marie and Genevieve Lee-Loy () on: Jun 26, 2015

  • I just learned last week of the passing of your loved one. Dad-(Samuel Lee-Loy), had such fond memories of his time spent with DK in high school and in Canada... My deepest condolences. Sincerely, Ingrid Lee-Loy - Posted by: Ingrid Lee-Loy () on: Jun 15, 2015

  • Rest in peace and God be with you, until we meet again, DK. Prayerful condolences to Lucinda, Kevin, and Lisa. Love Stella Zola LeJohn and family. - Posted by: Stella Zola LeJohn (Friend) on: Jun 08, 2015

  • I walked by Lucinda and D. K.'s home on my way home from work for many years. On occasions that he was in his front yard, we would engage in conversations about the state of education and the world in general. D. K. was kind, a good listener, and a man who persevered with a positive attitude despite considerable hardships later in his life. - Posted by: John Fast (neighbour) on: Jun 01, 2015

  • D K was very dear to me. He was one of my best cousins and I will surely miss him. - Posted by: Yvonne Maitland (cousin) on: May 30, 2015

  • Donald was an AMAZING person and a true INSPIRATION to many....He had tremendous courage, faith and perseverance even though he was faced with many challenges. Very few could have walked his road with such optimism. Lucinda was a rock by his side and they were very fortunate to share the love that they did....few have this gift. My thoughts and prayers go out to Lucinda, Lisa and Kevin while they adjust to the loss of such a wonderful person ! This farewell is only temporary as we will all meet again! May God be with all of you! Sincerely, Lorraine Gauthier - Posted by: Lorraine Gauthier (Donald was my client) on: May 27, 2015

  • Met DK for the first time at my longtime friend's funeral in Winnipeg in 2006. What lovely, warm persons he and his wife were. Reconnected later in Langley. Very sorry to hear of his passing. Had been asking about him in recent weeks and told he continued to hold his own. My deepest condolences to Lucinda and to family and friends who are left to mourn. - Posted by: Charles Taylor (Acquaintance) on: May 26, 2015

  • I was saddened to hear of Donald's death.....he was truly a gentleman and a scholar......I first met Donald about 1976 when his son Kevin played hockey and soccer with my son Mike.....Donald was also the soccer coach and he was a most positive influence on young boys.....always encouraging and supportive with the kids and also a great partner with their parents. His daughter Lisa also played soccer with my daughter Kerry and she was just as lovely and beautiful as their mother Lucinda....a truly gracious and charming woman.....a wonderful couple in a loving family. My late husband Jim thought very highly of Donald and they had a mutual admiration society betwen them....always joking and bantering. When I graduated from the U of M in 1991 (age 51) Donald was there in his full cloak and gown to congratulate me....also Dr. John Wortley, who be one of the officiants at his funeral, was my very favorite is no surprise to me that they were good friends.....two of my very favorite people! I am saddened to hear of his death, but rejoice with his life...he was a positive influence on so many people and I consider myself fortunate to have known him. My sincere sympathy to his family.....he shall be sorely missed. Diane Walton,Kelowna BC - Posted by: DIANE WALTON (FRIEND) on: May 25, 2015

  • DK was a lifelong dear friend of my father (A.E. Matthews, Jr.). Unfortunately, my father is not able to travel at the moment due to illness, otherwise I have no doubt that he would be at the memorial. - Posted by: Debbie (Matthews) Fisher (Friend) on: May 25, 2015

  • Dr. Gordon was my professor and mentor at the University of Manitoba during my undergraduate studies in early '80s. Passionate about literary studies and Latin America, he was also a generous person, always willing to listen and to guide. His humanity and sensibility showed in class and also in his relations outside. I was witness to his solidarity with the exiled Chilean community in Winnipeg and particularly to his support to our cultural activities at the time. One could sense his sympathy and understanding of the struggles we faced during our new life in Canada. Dr. Gordon was a strong supporter of our university careers. He taught me about critical readings and understanding of literature, the social connotations and the theories; on the practical level, I learned to write critically and to expand my research skills. He offered advice and even prepared passport applications and allowed me to work on some of his projects. He continued to write recommendations and sent words of encouragement while I was at the University of Toronto. Later on, as colleagues, I was always happy to see him at conferences and I was honored to visit him and his wife while the Canadian Hispanists celebrated his contributions at a meeting in Winnipeg. I was also honored when asked to write a recommendation for his Professor Emeritus status. To me, it was fitting that I would be asked to comment on his university work, but he was always my professor and mentor. His passing saddens me but I will always remember his generosity and the trust he gave me during my early life Canada and at the University of Manitoba. D.K., as I learned to call him later, thank you for your life and for what you gave to us. Dr. Luis A. Torres, University of Calgary - Posted by: Luis A. Torres (Former student) on: May 25, 2015

  • We only met DK in his retirement years when he and Lucinda spent their winters in Langley, B.C. His warm, humble and generous ways were always evident. DK will be sadly missed by all of us who knew him. - Posted by: David and Mavis Cooke (Friend) on: May 25, 2015

  • D.K. Gordon was a warm, helpful, fun-loving mentor to me when I took my first full-time teaching contract at the University of Manitoba in 1994. Not only did he give me lots of sage advice about teaching and how to deal with professional life in the university, but he also invited me repeatedly me to his home, took me out to the Jamaican restaurant in downtown Winnipeg, and always made me laugh and feel at home in a completely new environment. I'll always be grateful for the warmth and the moral support that he so generously gave me that year. My heartfelt condolences to D.K.'s lovely wife, Lucinda. May God bless you both. - Posted by: Norman Cheadle (Former colleague) on: May 25, 2015

  • A true scholar, the gentlest of gentlemen and an inspiration to oh, so many of our lives. Without Prof. Gordon's encouragement I would never have continued and completed my studies at U of M. Mrs Gordon, you were both so kind to have blessed my life with your presence at our home for a private Graduation as well as to celebrate our marriage. I so often think of you both. Please know how sorry I am to hear of this great loss. Our prayers are with you and your family. - Posted by: Marni Morton Langrell (former student at UofM) on: May 25, 2015

  • DK was a stalwart among his friends and peers, and had a very positive influence on all the communities in which he resided. We mourn his passing and offer our condolences to the bereaved family. Doug Jones and family. Toronto - Posted by: Doug Jones (friend) on: May 25, 2015

  • Our paths crossed in Tampa, Florida 1984. You can never judge a man by the way he looks. Dr. Donald K. Gordon was excellent, always a gentleman. We played tennis daily, I would never win more than one set, he was too proud to lose that second set, no matter how long it took. In checkers I never won. He used his checkers and eventually gave me a set of checkers. He would woof me before I put my men on the board. Lucinda, Lisa, and Kevin, I will always be here for you. I know he did his 5BX this morning. - Posted by: Joseph Chavis Jr. (Friends Forever) on: May 23, 2015

  • Come on people don't mourn, give Thanks instead for the life of DK. Lucinda, child, you did your best. Don't be afraid to BAWL it is healing for the soul. May the rest of the family be comforted at this dark hour. - Posted by: Lionel Adams (friend) on: May 22, 2015

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