On October 22nd, 2023, Sandra Lee Dinsmore, nee Gibson, daughter of George William "Red" and Dorothy Claire Gibson (nee Gleason), went home to be with Her Lord. She is survived by her children Adam (Mutsuko) and Aaron (Gregory), grandchildren Ryan, William, and Grace, brother Gary (Natashya), and her sister Debbie (Anand). Sandee entered her eternal rest far too soon, surrounded by the love, care, and affection of her family.
Sandee spent a large part of her youth as an army brat, bouncing around various bases all over Canada and Europe with her Nanny Grace, her father, Red, and his soul mate and loving wife, Dorothy. Sandee often spoke of their many adventures on the ships, bases, and cavorting around Europe in Pop's bright yellow Mercedes. Their family grew with the addition of her brother Gary, born in Germany, and then upon their return to Canada, her sister Debbie was born in Quebec City.
The family grew again when their three children married their spouses, Andrew, Adele, Anand and later welcomed Natashya to the family. Sandee was a loving aunt to her nieces, Suzanne, Tamara, and Emma, and her nephews, Gary Junior and Alexander, and was also a proud great aunt to Bearrett and Abigail. Through Sandee's marriage to Adam and Aaron's Father, Andrew, she is also remembered fondly by members of the Dinsmore Family.
Through these early adventures in life, Sandee acquired a love for language and became fluent in German and French. These skills would translate later in life upon achieving her Master’s degree in Education from the University of Toronto and becoming a French teacher, special education teacher, and professor at the University of Western Ontario. She loved her students and was passionate about their growth, learning, and development. She excelled at the career she loved with unmatched dedication and devotion.
Sandee showed the same dedication and devotion to her family. She loved and was so proud of her boys, Adam and Aaron, and loved to follow their progress as they grew into men with families of their own. She had great affection for Adam's wife, Mutsuko, and Aaron's husband, Gregory, and considered them her own children. Sandee was blessed with three beautiful grandchildren, Ryan, William, and Grace, whom she loved and cherished above all. Her face would light up whenever her family was around her, and she could share in their exploits and achievements.
Horses were an integral part of Sandee's life. She was an accomplished rider, show jumper and instructor who enjoyed dressage and was thrilled to go on a once-in-a-lifetime horseback riding tour of Ireland. Sandee loved everything to do with horses and had a thriving side business, 'Sundog Enterprises,' that created and repaired items for the equestrian community. She was also an avid gardener, chef, seamstress, artist, and later in life learned to play the guitar. She did it all!
Never one to let grass grow under her feet and to support her family, she moved many times, settling all over central and southern Ontario, namely Thornbury, Collingwood, London, Barrie, and recently, Toronto, where she lived and taught during her career. She was a 'Warrior Woman' who confronted every obstacle with determination, courage, and valour, even when faced with the challenges of aging and cancer. Earlier this year Sandee moved from Barrie to be closer to Princess Margaret Hospital and enjoyed her new home at Scarborough Retirement Residences, where she was the in-house librarian and enjoyed the weekly knitting group and spending time with her new neighbours and friends. Each Sunday, Sandee would look forward to the tradition of Sunday family dinners and spending time with her loved ones, extended family and friends in Scarborough.
A true Renaissance woman, Sandee is and was a genuinely amazing person and will be greatly missed by everyone she knew and whose life she touched.
The family would like to thank Dr. Jenny Lau and Dr Michael Yan from Princess Margaret Hospital for their care and compassion in helping us navigate the past year as Sandee bravely fought cancer. A special thanks to Rebecca her Case Manager from CCAC who from the beginning of this journey truly walked along side our family. Thank you to Dr Brodie and the Palliative Care Team at Providence Health for all of your kindness and support shown to Sandee and our family in the last week of her fight. Truly Sandee was blessed to have been surrounded by the most compassionate, caring group of nurses and health care professionals during this past year.
In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate a donation in her memory to the Canadian Caner Society.
To make a personal donation to the Canadian Cancer Society to aid in the research of Esophageal Cancer, Go to Donations tab to access the link in making a donation.
“Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal”
From an Irish headstone