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Theresa Gillies

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February 27, 1928 - October 9, 2015 Theresa Gillies, IHM (Sister John Vianney) died on October 9 after a long illness, at age 87. She was born to James T. Gillies and Theresa H. Gillies, in El Cajon, California, where she attended elementary and high school. After San Diego State U., she transferred to Immaculate Heart College, where she earned her B.A. in History, and her M.A. in Religious Studies. She had been a member of the Immaculate Heart Community for 65 years. Theresa loved her students and was beloved by them, from her first high school assignment at Our Lady Queen of Angels H.S., to her last, Immaculate Heart H.S., where she taught for 36 years. She maintained contact with many students who visited and communicated with her long after being students in her class. At IHHS, she was in charge of high school boarders, and later, for 25 years, she was senior moderator, in charge of graduation arrangements. She headed the Social Studies Dept. and taught German, history, and government. For one year Theresa studied at the University of Munich. In addition to German, she was fluent in Spanish. She was an avid reader, a lifelong learner, and a student of national and international issues. She loved listening to opera and enjoyed activities like stamp collecting, doing puzzles - crossword and jig saw. Her travels took her to Europe, Russia, Israel, Mexico, and Canada. Despite years of chronic pain, Theresa maintained her equanimity, sense of humor, and concern for the well-being of her family, friends, former students, and Community members. The members of Immaculate Heart Community will remember Theresa for her gracious welcoming greeting and presence, for her patience and perseverance during years of health issues, and for her love of Community. A woman of deep faith and trust in God's goodness, she goes home to God, to family and IHMs. We honor her dedication to education, her commitment to Community, and her unfailing hope in the future of Immaculate Heart High School and Immaculate Heart Community. Theresa is survived by her brothers, James and Gerald Gillies and pre-deceased by her sister Christian Margaret Cauchon, by her nieces, Lisette Cauchon and Helene Cauchon Sisneros, and many nieces and nephews. The celebration of Theresa Gillies' life will be at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, October 23, at Our Mother of Good Counsel Church, 2060 N. Vermont Ave., Los Angeles 90027. Interment will follow at Calvary Cemetery, 4201 Whittier Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90023. Donations in memory of Theresa Gillies, IHM, may be made to Immaculate Heart Community at 5515 Franklin Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90028. Or to Immaculate Heart High School at the same address.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Oct. 17 to Oct. 18, 2015
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