Diane Kelland (nee Lovatt)
June 30th, 1931 – October 7th, 2023
It is with an abundance of sadness, that we announce the passing, at home, and with her family at her side, of our precious mother (Mum) Diane Kelland. Loving wife of the late John, sister to her late brother Terry (Jo) of the UK, and sister to Julie (and the late Ed) of the UK, Mum to Jane (and Gaston), and Miranda (and Tim), grandmother/Nana to Daniel (and Manisha) and Elayne (Ken), and great grandmama to Jacob and Madison, sister in law to the late Bunty and Jimmie of the UK, and aunt to Mark, Adam, Emma, Jamie, Andrew, and their families in the UK.
Diane was born in Trent Vale, Staffordshire, England, to Marie Halsey Wallett and Harold Albert Lovatt. Very early on, she developed a love of dance and in particular ballet. After having completed her major syllabus in ballet, she became a professional ballerina touring throughout the United Kingdom. It was there that she met her husband, John, a musician. Upon leaving the stage, she opened a successful ballet school teaching hundreds of girls and young women the appreciation of ballet. She arrived in Canada in 1968 with her two young daughters and husband John, who had secured a senior position in the travel industry.
During her first years in Canada, Diane worked in the family’s travel company, but always maintained her interest and love of the arts. Upon retiring from the travel business she threw herself back into dance, picking up where she left off and attending professional level ballet classes. She loved every form of the arts, and enrolled in both painting and acting classes. Our homes are scattered with her beautiful artwork, and we were honoured to have been part of the audience at her numerous performances with Act II, a Ryerson University theatrical troupe. She often talked of her friends at Act II and the fun experiences and warm relationships that she formed.
Diane discovered an interest in psychology, and once again returned to furthering her education, by obtaining a Certificate of Psychology at Ryerson University.
Diane was an avid reader, and became the volunteer librarian at the school attended by her grandson, in fact so much did she give of her time and expertise, that they named their new library after her. It was a proud moment.
Diane had a particularly special relationship with her grandson, Dan, who she played an important part in helping to raise. Their time together continued to teach him valuable life lessons about the value of knowledge, persistence, justice, kindness, and loving life and the world. Throughout her life, much time was spent between the two of them vigorously discussing the wisdom of Captain Jean-Luc Picard.
Later on in her years Diane discovered a wonderful dance community at Attitudes Dance Studio, where once again she performed on the stage and taught adult ballet classes. Her dance friends at Attitudes meant a lot to her and it became her “sanctuary” for many years.
Along with her many friends, Diane leaves behind a dear high school friend, Bea Hamer, who resides in New Zealand. Bea and Diane continued corresponding throughout the years, keeping each other updated on what was going on in their lives.
Diane loved all animals, Star Trek, astrophysics, politics, sports, movies, theatre, gardening, and had a host of other interests. She wrote many journals of her travels throughout the world, and took an interest in so many areas that it was sometimes difficult to keep up with her. She was a strong and fiercely independent woman who insisted on driving a stick shift well into her eighties.
Diane was a kind, loving and caring woman, a gentle soul, who was as beautiful on the inside as she was on the outside. We will miss her terribly.
A special thank you to our wonderful Sophia Wallace for her companionship, kindness, and care of both “Mum” and our family over the last few months.
As per Diane’s wishes, a service will not take place, but we, and she, would respectfully appreciate donations to The North Toronto Cat Rescue, c/o 28 John Stiver Cr, Markham, Ontario L3R 9A8 /
in memory of Diane Kelland.
A celebration of Mum’s life will take place at a later date.
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