Cover photo for Gilbert (Gib) Watling's Obituary
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Gilbert (Gib) Watling

d. June 30, 2022

  • Funeral Location:St Mary’s Roman Catholic Church
  • Resting Location:No visitation
  • Wishes:In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Miramichi SPCA
  • It is with the heaviest of hearts that the family of Gilbert Ellison (Gib) Watling announce his peaceful passing surrounded by his family on June 30, 2022 at the age of 89.

    Born on June 8, 1933 to the late D. Ernest and Alice Watling of Loggieville, NB., he was the youngest of four children and the last surviving member of his immediate family.

    As a young man, Gib was involved in sports. He enjoyed playing baseball as a first baseman, badminton, and hockey. He had a beautiful bass voice and enjoyed singing in the church choir.

    He was employed for many years as an electrician at the pulp and paper mill in Newcastle and he loved to reminisce about the good old days at the mill and the characters he had worked with.

    In 1956, he married his true love, Mary Donovan and they settled in Renous, NB. In 1958, they welcomed their first son Gregory, followed two years later in 1960 by daughter Susan. In 1964, they moved to Newcastle, NB and completed their family welcoming their third child David. The family spent many happy years in their home on Elizabeth Street.

    Gib had a special interest in the military as his father and brother were honored veterans of the First and Second World Wars, respectively. He was very proud of their contributions to world peace. He could talk for hours about history. He enjoyed assembling models of airplanes and sailing ships which he continued to do until most recently.

    Gib was actively involved in the Kinsman Club of Newcastle and the K-40 for many years. He maintained contact and close friendships with several Kinsmen and their families. He always enjoyed the annual “meeting” which allowed him to reconnect with other members, share a meal, enjoy a “rye” or two and tell some tall tales.

    Throughout the years, two of Gibs favorite past times were boating on the Miramichi River, and spending time at the family cottage in Oak Point. Many hours were spent on his boat “the Misty Susan” with family, friends, and neighbors exploring the islands and beaches in the Miramichi area and making memories to last a lifetime. The cottage at Oak Point was a gathering place for relaxation, special celebrations, meals, and just spending time with each other. If only those walls could talk.

    Gib moved to Parkland on the River Retirement Community shortly after Mary (his wife of 62 years) passed away in 2020. Gib started this new chapter in his life where he enjoyed going to the gym doing yoga and engaging in various activities with friends old and new.

    In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by his brother Clifton (Kip), Ernest and sister Joyce and recently by his oldest son Greg (April 2022) and his wife Mary (June 2020). These most recent losses were especially heartbreaking for Gib and his family.

    Left behind to grieve him are his daughters: Debbie Walsh (Eldon), Susan Roberts (Steve) and son: David Watling (Colleen). Daughter in law: Donna Watling. Grandchildren: Erin Despres (Yves), Eric Watling (Jessica), Emily Roberts (Carl), Sabrina LeBlanc (Tim), Brad Walsh (Tracey). Great grandchildren: Caden and Kiara LeBlanc, Nève and Noemie Despres. He will be missed by his many nieces and nephews who affectionately knew him as “Uncle Guppy”.

    Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Wednesday, July 6, 2022, at 2 pm, from Saint Mary’s Roman Catholic Church.

    The family would like to extend a sincere and heartfelt thank you the Extra Mural Program, and the Parkland Retirement staff, for the care they extended to Gib over the past few years.

    As Gib had a soft spot for animals, in lieu of flowers the family would appreciate donations to the local SPCA.

    Arrangements are entrusted to Northumberland Funeral Home, 102 Pleasant St, telephone (506) 622-7741
    To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Gilbert (Gib) Watling, please visit our flower store.


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