George Marshall Grills
June 19, 1941 – April 25, 2018
George’s journey began in Stockton, California. His father, Maj. Gen. Herbert Grills, U.S.A.F. (deceased) and mother Helen Rasmussen (deceased) took him to many Air Force bases in the U.S., Guam and Japan. He attended 12 different schools before graduation in Dallas. This made him comfortable in any space and culture. Duke University awarded him an engineering degree (go Duke) plus awesome fraternity contacts. The Peace Corps in the Philippines was next followed by a long career with IBM which afforded many opportunities including a move to Vancouver and Toronto. An appreciation for live theatre, wine, cooking, the underprivileged, education, and liberal politics led to many volunteer stints. George will be remembered for his intelligence, dry wit, insightfulness, generosity, and remarkable tenacity. He read mysteries, enjoyed skiing, his ’57 T-bird, cruising (missed Antarctica by a smidge), entertaining, sports (especially Cowboys and Final Four,) and pets. His beloved sister, Jeanne Tate, predeceased him. Left to mourn are his “rock”, Lee, and their loving daughter, Karen (Ralf), brother Joe (Marge), many treasured nieces and nephews all over North America as well as Greg (Shannon). Celebration of Life at Seymour Golf & Country Club, North Vancouver, Sunday, June 10 from 1 to 4 p.m. In lieu of flowers, please donate to Arts Club, Capilano University, and Duke University, Knowledge Network and/or PBS, outstanding Lions Gate Hospital Foundation or another worthy charity you support.
Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.MeM.com for the Grills family.
George Marshall Grills
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November 21, 2018
George and I were fraternity brothers (Phi Kappa Psi) at Duke. I heard from George in the earlier part of this year when he told me about his illness. I am sad to say I only learned of his death yesterday when I received the Duke magazine in the mail. I was shaken when I read his name under our class notes.
George loved life! It was that simple to me. I can recall his very distinctive laugh and smile. He and Lee were wonderful hosts to me on at least two occasions when I visited with them in Vancouver. I really enjoyed their regaling me with their stories of cruising. I think they covered just about every place in the world.
At Duke, I have fond memories of going to basketball and football games with George, and spending time together out front on the fraternity section patio. I especially remember beach weekends in May of each year. George was always the life of the party. George knew how to live!
I was so impressed reading about all his accomplishments at IBM from the people who wrote about those memories on this site. George would never talk about himself, but he was always interested in what you were doing and what you had accomplished.
I am so sad to learn that George is no longer with us. He will be missed. He was truly a fine man and I am proud to be able to call him "brother".
July 31, 2018
So sad to hear of George's passing.
I recall him as that consummate professional, ever ready to add insight, strategy and levity to the situation at hand.
Although our career paths briefly crossed, He was one of those very memorable, larger than life forces that was ingrained in my IBM past.
RIP George and all the best to the family from the east coast ....
May 9, 2018
I first met George in 1975 at IBM's Advanced Marketing School (as shown in the picture I posted). He became my marketing mentor and I always appreciated his creative solutions to challenges.
I recall meeting you both at Capilano University, where you were acknowledged for your contributions, and likewise seeing you both featured as legacy donors on Knowledge Network.
My sincere condolences to you and your family.
May 9, 2018
May 9, 2018
When I last talked to George in the fall, he remarkably was his usual upbeat, positive and funny self. He noted how blessed he was to have you by his side, along with Karen and his many friends. You and George were quite a team!
Joan and I are honored to have known you both.
May 8, 2018
I had so much fun working with George. What a great guy. Spent time with him in the branch and in competitive marketing (C3).
A class guy by all measurements. He will be missed.
Sylvia and I are so sad for the family.
all our very best Harry and Sylvia
May 7, 2018
Always smiling, always a thoughtful discussion. That was George. Whether it was a detailed discussion about his beloved T-bird, or a thought or two on the local political situation, I always enjoyed those moments with George and Lee.
We are gonna miss you George--S...
May 4, 2018
George you were such a BIG personality to me. I remember meeting you for the first time while working on the ICBC project. The marketing guy came in to meet and be met, you certainly made an impression on me.
You and Lee are such a wonderful couple. I'm glad to have had you in my life and the lives of me kids. You inspired them with the stories of your travel and your generosity towards others.
We miss and love you George...what a bright light
Grace Little and gang
May 4, 2018
I will always have fond memories of George from our many years of working together at IBM...his love of life, great smile and wit, his 'Texas drawl', his keen mind and appreciation for strategy, his commitment to family, friends and community and always acting as the consummate professional...he will be missed...our thoughts and prayers to Lee and her family. Roger and Faith Garriock
May 3, 2018
It is so sad that we have lost our good friend, George. I have so many fond memories of him as such a very special person. Most recently in our regular smaller IBM get togethers several times a year. George was always typical George at our sessions. He was always sincere and gracious and fun to sit next to. I just loved sitting next to him. I've attached a photo of one of those sessions from late 2016, where I was not so lucky. Several of us, including his supporters Steve and Ash, had a few special lunches with George while he tenaciously battled his illness which we all thorougly enjoyed.
My memories of George go back to the days at IBM at 1333 West Georgia, when our team was in the next cubicle to his team and he was enjoying smashing marketing success at ICBC. I was truly envious. So much so that when he sold the Mass Storage System and purchased a Porsche afterwards and called it his "MSS", I had to work on duplicating the feat even though I did not have Chris Tye to do the install nor did I get a Porsche. Another area that George inspired me besides marketing was to give donations to hospitals as IBM would duplicate the money. I have done so ever since he made the suggestion. What a great idea.
Two recent memories that stick in my mind when I discovered that he was terminally ill were my phone call to him at that time and my last visit with him. He told me, weeks later, that after the call he had cried. I told him that I had also. As to my last visit when he awoke from his snooze in the hospital, he immediately looked at me and said, "Hello, Jack" in his own inimitable sincere subdued Texan voice. I thought how quick and how gracious. George was impressive to the end.
May 3, 2018
Hello Lee and family
I was sorry to hear about George. I remember him from our IBM days as a very nice man - and FUN! May your happy memories of George sustain you at this very sad time and in the years ahead. Kind Regards.
May 3, 2018
Dear George and Lee,
I always remember you as the "cool" guy I worked with when we were both Account Execs in the Finance Branch in Toronto. Nothing rattled you. You always moved forward.
The 57 T-Bird, with the Ontario license "MA TOY", definitely enhanced the cool image.
I hope you have found rest.
May 3, 2018
June and I were so sorry to hear about George. You and your family are in our hearts and prayers at this sad time.
I have many, many fond memories of working with George at IBM both here in Vancouver and in Toronto. He was a great contributor to the business but he had two particularly outstanding qualities - first was that no matter how challenging or difficult the circumstances we found ourselves in he could always find a way to get things back on course , and the other was his unique sense of humour which made it fun and kept us all on an even keel. I feel fortunate to have had that association.
Last spring at the ex-IBM dinner George and I had a very touching talk sharing memories and experiences. It was a wonderful opportunity to remember those special times.
With our very best wishes to all of you for the future,
Peter and June Webb
May 2, 2018
George, what will we do without you? Duke just won't be the same. No excitement regarding the Final Four. ICBC, C3, Brand Management, BMO, DMR...
You always were larger than life. We enjoyed our celebrations of Thanksgiving before heading to Mexico. And your cruising. Whether in the parades with the top down on your 57 T-Bird, or when you dropped in to PV on your Mexican Riviera cruise.
Faye especially liked the trips to chemo when you chatted about lots of stuff. We will always love you.
FROM THE FAMILY
IN THE CARE OF