In memory of

David Illiatovitch-Owen

David Elliot Tudor Illiatovitch-Owen, age 48, passed away at home on November 19, 2023 surrounded by his family after fighting a courageous and lengthy battle with pancreatic cancer. Survived by his wife of 23 years, Emily Illiatovitch-Owen (née Duckett), their son Gabriel and daughter Hayley, his mom and dad, Michelle Illiatovitch and Jeff Goldman, sister Sarah Illiatovitch-Goldman, brother-in-law Brian Loevner, nieces Carly, Lucy and Asa, sister Kestra Illiatovitch-Goldman and brother-in-law Dwayne Marks. David is also survived by his, mother-in-law Ilene Duckett, sister-in-law Pam Kostiw, her husband Greg Kostiw and their daughters Madeleine and Victoria, father Michael Owen and step-mother Therese MacLaughlin as well as countless friends and community members, all of whom loved him dearly.

In his fight with pancreatic cancer, David put his values into 3 words – Family, Honour, Integrity.

David loved his family above all else. He was a protector to his sisters, always there to help his parents, and nothing mattered more to him than his wife and children.

David had a strong set of principles and he put them into practice in how he treated people, the earth, and his work.

David dedicated his life to making his corner of the world better. He was a leader. He believed in working hard and expecting others to do the same. David was a successful entrepreneur – owning and running De La Mer Fresh Fish Markets and The Feathers Pub.

David didn’t preach his principles but lived them. He was demanding of himself and wanted the best out of those around him as well.

David was a chef by training, a second-degree black belt in Hapkido, a gardener, nature lover, collector of medieval weaponry, passionate debater, and a royal pain in the….

David fought pancreatic cancer for two years, undergoing treatments of all kinds and documenting his journey to bring light to the awfulness of this disease and the reality of facing your own mortality. In the summer at David’s request family and friends gathered to say goodbye face to face. At that time, David had the opportunity to offer his own eulogy. Here is some of what he said:

“The first thing I hate about eulogies is that they never actually tell the truth about the person because they only say one side of the equation. So I am here to write that wrong. I'm Dave and I’ve been an asshole through my life. I have been called caustic, abrasive, overbearing, rude, cross. I've probably been a bully at some points in my life. I have made stupid decisions that have hurt people's feelings and have not come out the way I wanted to. All of those things are absolutely unequivocally true. And I own that. On the flip side I could also be called determined. I think brave sometimes. At moments eloquent. Stalwart in my friendship. I don't make friends easily, but to those people who are my friends, I will happily go, the extra mile. And so, when life comes the end, you start weighing those things, pros and cons. And, start realizing that there's very few moments where someone is a good person or a bad person. But rather there's just choices that are made. And, hopefully those choices end up being right.”

That’s David, a realist, a fighter, a person who found pleasure in things like walks in the neighbourhood, playing D&D, watching movies, and having a beer with friends. David loved dancing, music, meditation, yoga, reading, baseball, took great pleasure in his strength and physical ability, and had opinions on almost everything which he shared readily.

David was who he was through and through. No apologies. We were all better for knowing him and we will all miss him endlessly.

The family wishes to thank Dr. Yoo-Jung Ko, Kate Bessel, Dr. Shiva Jayaraman, Dr. Anish Kirpalani, Ping Ping Zhang, Elizabeth Dougherty, Dr. Jamie Meuser, Nellie Savina, Pricilla Suddesh, Jill Shainhouse, and countless other people who were on David’s incredible care team these last two years.

Funeral Service will be Tuesday November 21, 2023 at 10:00 am at the Mount Pleasant Funeral Center in Mount Pleasant Cemetery (375 Mount Pleasant Road, East gate entrance). For those who wish to view the service remotely, a livestream link will be available at 9:45 am. To access the link please go to the top of this page where the link to the service will become available at approximately 9:45 am Tuesday morning. Should you need any assistance please call Mount Pleasant Funeral Centre: 416-485-5572.

David has chosen to have his remains cremated.

Reception will take place immediately following the Funeral Service at 38 Donegall Drive, Toronto, Ontario, M4G 3G5.

Shiva will be held at 38 Donegall Drive, Toronto commencing Tuesday November 21, 2023 and ending the evening of Thursday November 23.
Shiva Visiting hours are from 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm and from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Evening Minyan commences at 7:30 pm


Those wishing to provide a Shiva meal are asked to co-ordinate the scheduling by contacting Sheryl Trachter at


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Gaynor Williams (Friend)

Entered November 19, 2023 from Toronto

I met you and the family when I worked on Donegal many years ago
You and the family were very welcoming
This news has made me sad sending condolences to the family
God bless
Gaynor 😊🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿

Trina and Gregory Seaforth 

Entered November 19, 2023 from Richmond Hill

Our thoughts go out to the family!!! Sending ❤️ to you. Dave was a very special guy and has touched the lives of so many people! Thank you for sharing your journey! He really did beat so many of the odds and inspired us to live each day with bravery and hope.

Michael Owen & Therese McLachlan (Father and step-mother)

Entered November 19, 2023 from Tauranga

David, may you travel well and swiftly to the beach of stars. For your 48 years my love, known and unknown, has travelled by your side. May it do so always. Love Dad and Therese

Linda Davidson (Family friend and caregiver through massage therapy)

Entered November 20, 2023

It was a long journey filled with many moments of struggle and pain, but I watched David rise to the challenge of living life in his best possible way every day. I was in awe of his courage and devotion.
I will miss him dearly.

Beverley Bobkin English and Norm English (family)

Entered November 20, 2023 from Richmond Hill, On

Dearest family,
Our sympathy to the family ! Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this most difficult time. From reading the obituary and comments, David sounds like an amazing man of many talents. Cherish your beautiful memories deep within your heart forever.
With special thoughts
Bev and Norm English


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