“This morning, we lost a true angel. Teresa was a pioneer and an incredible ambassador for the palliative care community and we are deeply saddened by her premature passing,” said Allan Van der Wee, President, Operations Board of the Residence. “Teresa touched so many lives and had a huge impact on all of us – employees, volunteers, friends, patients, families and the community at large. She leaves an immeasurable mark on palliative care in our community. We will miss her beyond words.”
“Teresa’s passion and commitment were second to none. She had a vision over 20 years ago to start a hospice so that families could be close to their loved ones as they lived out their final days. Teresa was the heart and soul of the Residence and we will continue to honour her vision,” said Robert Havill, President, Foundation Board of the Residence. “Thanks to her relentless passion and indomitable spirit, the Residence has cared for over 4,400 patients and over 17,000 of their family members. Teresa gave the dying a voice and the dignity they deserve.”
Teresa co-founded the Residence with then MNA Russell Williams in 1998. The need for the Residence grew out of her concern for terminally ill patients who had to be transferred downtown in their final days, away from their community and loved ones. She has been celebrated for her many achievements over the last 19 years and recognized for her contribution to palliative care in the West Island community, as well as her acknowledged leadership role in the field throughout Canada. For further information about Teresa’s life, please refer to the attached biography.
Teresa is survived by her husband, Gavin Fernandes and their two sons, Jonathan and Nicholas. She also leaves behind her extended family and a large community of friends and colleagues.