Joan Sherman Weir
21 April , 1928 – 15 June , 2019
JOAN SHERMAN WEIR April 21, 1928 – June 15, 2019
With great sadness we announce the passing of the author Joan Sherman Weir, who died peacefully at Cedarview Lodge in North Vancouver on the evening of June 15, surrounded by family. She leaves four sons, Ian (Jude), Paul (Sandra), Michael, and Richard (Coleen); grandchildren Christina, Rachelle, Mitchell, Amy, Alexandra, Andrew, Jeannie, Taylor and Houston; and eight great-grandchildren.
Joan was born April 21, 1928 in Calgary, the youngest of four children of the Anglican Bishop Ralph Sherman and his wife Carolyn (nee Gillmor). She was educated there and in Winnipeg, where the family moved when her father became Archbishop of Rupert’s Land. Graduating from the University of Manitoba with a B.A. in English and History, she worked for several years creating radio broadcasts for children as part of the advertising department at Eaton’s. In May of 1955 she married the surgeon Dr. Ormond Weir, and in 1959 they moved to Kamloops, B.C., where they lived for nearly 50 years.
Given the constraints of the era, she deferred her writing aspirations until the day her youngest son started Grade One. Then she launched her career in earnest, and went on to write 16 young adult novels, notably The Brideship and The Principal’s Kid, which won the B.C. Centennial Book Award in 2000, along with six books of history. She was a proud member of The Writers’ Union of Canada, and for many years she taught English and Creative Writing at the University College of the Cariboo (later Thompson Rivers University), where she is remembered by many as a mentor and inspiration. In 2004 she was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Letters degree.
For half a century, Joan was an active member of the congregation at St. Paul’s Cathedral. An avid horsewoman, she loved riding in the hills on her horse Rajah, or else hiking with a sequence of beloved yellow labs (four generations’ worth). She was predeceased by her siblings Laurence, Barbara (Cantlie), and L.R. (Bud) Sherman, and in 2007 by Orm, her husband of 52 years.
The family is deeply grateful to the nurses, care aides and long-time companions at Cedarview Lodge, where Joan coped with great courage and spirit with the onset of dementia. There will be a funeral service at 11 a.m. on Saturday July 6 at St. Paul’s Cathedral in Kamloops.
No services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Joan Sherman Weir
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26 June 2019
Farewell, Joan! one of the nicest and most interesting people I worked with. What a cheerful laughing face! what deep thoughts and sharp observations and fascinating stories you shared and what joy in living and writing and inspiring others. It was always a welcome sight to see you, someone we could count on . . . bless you, Joan. Happy trails to you! Ave atque vale. MN
26 June 2019
Our sincere condolences on the loss of Joan.
We remember her contagious enthusiasm for teaching, writing, and life.
We also remember the wonderful and warm parties Joan and Orm hosted for the English department.
Joan was, indeed, an inspiration, a mentor, and a role model. She seemed to be able to do it all -- with excellence, grace, and humility.
Ginny Ratsoy and Alan Penfold
23 June 2019
It is with fond memories I think of Joan. She was a frequent contributor to local TV programming on CFJC-TV for a number of shows. I was honoured to be involved behind the scenes in the control room and learned to appreciate her quick smile, sense of humour and amazing writing and story telling abilities. My thoughts are with Joan's family at this sad time.