On Monday, May 7, 2018, our family lost the most amazing husband, father, brother and friend, Robert Joseph Gillis, at home, surrounded by the people he loved the most.
Born in New Waterford, Bobby was the son of the late Alexander and Martha (Currie) Gillis.
At a very young age, 'Laurie Coakley' stole Bobby's heart and in return, gave him a wonderful life with over 40 years of marriage and two amazing children, son, 'Joseph' and daughter, 'Myrna'. The three quickly became his whole world and words cannot express his 'Love' and 'Pride' for them every single day of his life. Family, friends and supporting his family were always very important to Bobby. Working for 25 years in Lingan and Phalen Collieries and most recently in security for the last 12 years, Bobby left an imprint on evryone he met. He had a very quick wit and could put a spin on most any situation to make you have a laugh. When you had something to say, he always listened and gave you the time you needed to finish before he would comment, making you feel important in his life. He loved to tease and his charm and laughter were second to none. His brothers, Sandy and Duncan, were his life-long friends and continued to give him strength right to the very end.
Leaving to mourn and rejoice his life are his wife and 'best friend', Laurie (Coakley); his son, Joseph; his daughter, Myrna (Josh); brothers, Sandy (Jan) and Duncan (Lynne); sisters, Mary (Paul) Currie, Lydia MacLeod, Patsy (Eric) Sutherland, Pauline Aucoin, Josie (Blair) Locke, Susie (Paul) Hines, Jeannie (Jamie) Stevens and Marcie (Joe) Williams; sisters-in-law, Eileen (Don) Ohorodnyk, Sharon Coakley; brother-in-law, John Coakley and many nieces and nephews.
Besides his parents, Bobby was predeceased by his sister Jenny and her husband, Pat Usher; brother-in-law, Don MacLeod; mother and father-in-law, Rene and Robert Coakley and brother-in-law, Robert 'Bobby' Coakley.
There will be no visitation. Cremation has taken place under the care and direction of V.J. McGillivray Funeral Home, 380 Smith Street, New Waterford. A Funeral Mass of celebration will be held on Friday, May 11, 2018 at 10 a.m. in the Parish Church of St. Leonard, Mount Carmel Avenue, with Father Ray Huntley officiating. Burial will be in Mount Carmel Cemetery with a luncheon to follow at St. Leonard's Parish Hall on Convent Street, New Waterford. Donations in his memory may be made to the Hospice/Palliative Care Society of Cape Breton or the Canadian Cancer Society. Online expressions of sympathy may be sent to the family at: www.vjmcgillivray.ca.