OBITUARY

Esther De Winter

16 June, 197029 April, 2021
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Elizabeth (Esther) Cornelia Maria de Winter June 16, 1970- April 29, 2021

It is with unimaginable sadness that we announce the passing of Esther de Winter on Thursday, April 29, 2021. A beloved wife, daughter, sister, stepmother, step grandmother, aunt, niece and friend.

Esther was born in Heemskerk, the Netherlands to Joanne (Liefting) and Antonius “Ton” (de Winter). She moved to the East Coast of Canada in 1977 and eventually made her way to BC where she met her future husband. On August 19, 1995 she married Tim Boutilier and became stepmom to Brian and Colleen.

Esther had a heart of gold, and would do anything for anyone. She was a lover of all creatures great and small. Whether rescuing a pup or feeding the birds, she was on a mission to save them all. She was generous to a fault and loved by everyone that knew her.

Esther was predeceased by her father, Ton. She is survived by her husband Tim, her mother Joanne and stepfather Russell, her brother, Marc (Carmen), sisters Nicole (Travis) and Mireille, stepbrothers David and Shawn (Sherry), her stepchildren Brian (Katrina) and Colleen (Wes), her step-grandchildren, Jude and Scotlyn, as well as many nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts and uncles. She also left behind her much loved dogs, Gracie and Walter.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the MARS Wildlife Rescue Centre.

Biography

“Those we love don’t go away, They walk beside us every day, Unseen, unheard, but always near, Still loved, still missed And very dear..”

Esther was born on June 16, 1970 at Saint Joseph Hospital in Heemskert, Netherlands. She was the daughter of Joanne Liefting and Ton de Winter and moved to Canada in 1977. Raised in Sussex, New Brunswick, she was brought up to be trustworthy and conscientious. Traits that would help her throughout her life.

Esther was always aware of how others around her felt, a quality that served her well. With the capacity to tolerate the feelings of others, Esther tried her hardest to avoid conflicts. Preferring a quiet environment where she could concentrate, Esther also had the ability to relate well with her family and friends. Esther was raised with 3 siblings; her younger brother Marc and two younger sisters, Nicole and Mireille. She was at the centre of all things “family”. Es and her siblings had the typical childhood rivalries but they cared deeply for each other and shared as much time together as possible over the last several years.

Love can’t be defined but must be experienced. That was so true for Esther. On August 19, 1995 Esther married Timothy John Boutilier at Salmon Point Resort in Campbell River, BC. She and Tim were completely committed to each other and shared many similar interests throughout their 25+ years of marriage. Over the last decade as Essie’s health deteriorated Tim became her rock, always there for her and all her needs. Although Esther did not seek out conflict, she did not avoid them either. Despite her somewhat spicy attitude, Essie had a heart of gold and was committed to those she allowed into her heart.

Esther became an instant stepmom in 1995 to Tim’s children, Brian and Colleen. She enjoyed spending time with the kids and would go out of her way to make everyone feel included. No matter how hectic life around her might be, she kept track of everyone’s schedules and special events, nothing would get by Essie. Esther and Tim were also blessed with two (step) grandchildren, Jude and Scotlyn whom Essie adored.

Esther’s interests were focused around things she could enjoy from the comfort of her home. She could be found enjoying a game of tennis on tv at just about any time of day. She was also an avid curling and car race fan, and even humoured Tim with the odd football game. The Snowbirds would also put a smile on her face, but not as much as the CF-18s flying overhead. Essie always looked forward to their arrival every year.

Esther was an animal lover through and through. She loved all of her pets tremendously throughout her life. Her menagerie included dogs, cats, those blasted gold fish and even the odd snake and lovebird. Her family was complete with her two loving poodles, Gracie and Walter. Esther was as loyal to her pets as they were to her.

Esther passed away on April 29, 2021 at North Island Hospital Comox Valley. She endured years of progressive COPD which took it’s toll most noticeably over the last 6 months. After several trips to the hospital, Essie could not rally anymore. She was surrounded by her family when she passed away, anyone of whom would give anything to have her back.

A Celebration of life is planned on her birthday for family only. Esther will be cremated and her ashes will be scattered at sea with all of her family from Holland when travel permits.

Dearest Esther - wife, daughter, sister, stepmom, step grandmom, stepdaughter, auntie, cousin, niece and friend - you will be sadly missed but lovingly remembered from now until the end of time.

Services

No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.

Memories

Esther De Winter

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Comox Valley Classic Cruisers

13 May 2021

Tim, at this difficult time, expressing our deepest sympathy to you and all the family.
From The Comox Valley Classic Cruisers

Marijke de Winter

7 May 2021

Dear family,

With much pain in my heart I say farewell to my oh so dear niece and godchild Esther.

Looking back on her 50 years of life, I think with great pleasure of the first seven years Esther spent with us in Castricum, the Netherlands. We often went out, with my car “the Karmann Ghia”, to the dunes, the beach or Volendam, with Mireille but also with various cousins, while her parents were “having coffee” or were playing cards at opa Tinus and oma Rietje.

I also have very many warm memories of my overseas visits, first in Sussex (buying a puppy) and later on at Vancouver Island. Including 1995 with opa and oma at Esther's and Tim's wedding. And in 2017/2019 with Tineke, Annelies and me in Comox: Tim and Esther’s door was always wide open. And no matter how Esther felt, she was involved in the well-being of everyone. From human to animal. She remained optimistic and humorous and… a bit cynical at times. But we, her aunts were very familiar with this characteristic.

I still can’t believe that Essie is no longer with us. I would have given her and all her loved ones so many more wonderful years.
I am going to miss you enormously!

Lieve Essie, you will remain forever in our Dutch hearts!
Love you, Marijke


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