Cover photo for Karen Joyce Walker's Obituary
Karen Joyce Walker Profile Photo

Karen Joyce Walker

Karen Joyce Walker

On Saturday, June 6th, 2020 in her 58th year, after a brave and hard-fought battle against ovarian cancer, Karen passed away – slipping into the early morning light towards dawn, her favourite time of the day. When that happened, heaven gained an angel and we gained a guardian angel.

All who loved her dearly will never forget her love of dogs, England, great books and travel, as well as her kindness, warmth, compassion, genuineness, openness, ethics, fierce loyalty, intellect, passion, strength and tenacity. She was an incredibly fun-loving companion who was gentle and tender, sharp as a tack and surprisingly tough as nails right until the very end.

She leaves behind a devastated group of sister friends (Shirley Simo, Colleen Levenick, Constance Rennett, Linda Phillips, Sandra Butler, Kimberly Kent-Rodgman, Colleen Ryan and Carol Day), sisters Linda Secord, Susan Walker-Davies (Brian), brother Jim Walker, sister-in-laws Heather Secord and Judy Hamilton, and her many nieces and nephews and grand nieces and nephews.

Karen was predeceased by her father Richard Walker, step-mother Audrey Hamilton, mother Mary Orriss, as well as her brother Gary Hamilton, her cherished brother Ed Secord, and most recently, her brothers Joe and Bob Secord.

Karen was born and raised in London Ontario, where she received her MA in Sociology from Western Ontario. Drawn to the “big city” like a magnet, Karen moved to Toronto to follow her dream of living in the city and being a career woman just like Marlo Thomas and Mary Tyler Moore. Over the course of her career, she was known for conducting outstanding qualitative and quantitative healthcare market research with an eye for detail and a passion for uncovering the truth at the following research firms: Schema Research Ltd., Canada Market Research (Ifop) and Angus Reid Group (Ipsos-Reid Group). She finished up her career joining her best friend Shirley at Summit Strategy Group. She so loved what she did that she worked until mid-March of this year and it was painful for her to accept the fact that she had to “retire” once she entered palliative care.

All of those who knew and loved Karen would like to extend our many thanks to the fine physicians and staff at Princess Margaret Hospital’s Gynecology Clinic for their role in facilitating the extra time she had after diagnosis to enjoy her friends, family, England, and another season of golf (her golf ladies will miss her swing, tenacity, good humour and good company on and off the course). Special thanks to Dr. Mike and nursing team at the transitional palliative care unit at Princess Margaret for your gentle and patient care of Karen during such a difficult time, as well as your accommodation of visits during the COVID-19 lockdown. Special thanks also to Kensington Hospice for your loving care of Karen during the final and most difficult phase of her journey.

A celebration of life will be held in the future, when COVID-19 restrictions allow for a suitable gathering size. In lieu of flowers, please donate generously in her memory to the Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation, Kensington Health Foundation (Kensington Hospice), or Kingston 4 Paws Service Dogs.

~ Bound by the Heart ~

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