Connie passed away peacefully in the Pasqua Hospital Palliative Care Unit on Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022, at the age of 98.
She will be lovingly remembered by her husband of 44 years, Donald Willerth; her son, Bob, and his wife Elaine; three grandsons, their spouses and seven great-grandchildren: Geoff (Ashley), Hunter and Austin, Mark (Stephanie), Allie and Brynn, Steven (Sarah), Macie, Zoey and Quinn. She is also survived by two sisters, Jean Johnston and June Wilson; and sister-in-law, Doreen Willerth; along with many nieces and nephews.
She was predeceased by her parents, Lillian and Wilfred Leach; her first husband, Lorne Gillespie; siblings, Ronald, Bill and Fred; as well as many in-laws.
Connie was born and raised in Indian Head. She spent her summers at Katepwa Lake with her parents, grandparents, brothers and sisters. “The Lake” was always a big part of her life. After graduating high school in 1943, she took the train to Winnipeg to start her nurses training at St.
Boniface Hospital. After completing her training in 1946, she returned home and married Lorne Gillespie, relocating to Regina where she started working at both Regina General and Grey Nuns (Pasqua) hospitals.
It was in Regina where Bob was born, and two years later Lorne passed away. Shortly after Lorne’s death, she moved back to Indian Head to be closer to family. She continued her nursing career in Indian Head at the hospital as a general duty nurse, transitioning to OR nurse, and eventually the Director of Nursing until her retirement. She never hesitated to assist surgeons in the OR suite, or deliver babies when help was needed. She was a very skilled and caring nurse who was often thanked by former patients as she met them around town. Undoubtedly, she touched many lives in the community for over 30 years.
In 1977, Connie married Don Willerth and began another chapter, embracing farming life. Together they did a lot of travelling in Canada and around the world, always taking time to visit relatives and friends. Christmases in Mexico with family was a favourite destination. Connie and Don were always at their grandsons’ activities in Regina. She supported each of them as they attended university in Saskatoon, taking countless road trips there to take the boys out for dinner and visit. She loved her grandsons dearly, and made each one believe he was her favourite.
Connie always supported Indian Head community events and functions. She was an active member and volunteer for various service organizations in town including the Royal Purple, Legion and Ladies Auxiliary. She taught Sunday School at the Anglican Church and volunteered at blood pressure clinics. Connie and Don enjoyed curling and playing cards with friends. She was also an excellent cook and loved getting family together for one of her amazing meals. She was a passionate gardener and spent many hours outside working in her flower beds and garden.
Connie was a fun-loving and hardworking lady. She had a quick, humorous retort for those who tested her, and she was always ready to try something new, be it a new appliance or recipe that she found. She could knit up a pair of wool socks in an evening in front of the TV while she had some cake, buns or casserole in the oven. We will miss her welcoming smile and encouragement in each of our lives.
In 2017, failing health brought about a move to Victoria Park Care Home in Regina, where they lived until her passing.
A private family interment will be held in the Indian Head Cemetery at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Connie are gratefully accepted for the Indian Head and District Hospital Foundation, Box 1547, Indian Head, SK, S0G 2K0, Online condolences may be made at

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