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FOURNIER, Dr. Donald Gordon



Dr. Donald Gordon Fournier. O.D. peacefully at Mariposa House Hospice, Severn, 7 September 2022.

Don’s rich life started when he was born to Arnold and Mary (Minnie; nee MacDonald) Fournier in 1925, becoming Helen’s younger brother. He attended Orillia District Collegiate and Vocational Institute where he met the love of his life Alda. He left high school prematurely to enlist in the RCAF. Having reached the rank of Pilot Officer as Flight Engineer on Halifax bombers, Don’s training was incomplete when hostilities ended in Europe and he was discharged in 1945. He returned to school, completing his high school education then graduating from Toronto’s School of Optometry in 1950. 

Don established his optometry clinic in Orillia in 1950, married Alda Jessie Campbell in 1952, and became fully engaged in Orillia’s communities. He was a: long-time member of St. James’ Anglican Church where he sang in the choir over five decades; founding and life-time member of St. James’ Anglican CHI-RHO Fellowship; member and president of the Rotary Club of Orillia and of the Junior Chamber of Commerce (Jaycees); former member of St James/St Andrews Cemetery board; long-standing member of Branch 34 of the Royal Canadian Legion and founding and life-long member of the Orillia Fish & Game Conservation Club. He served 18 years on the Board of Directors of the Ontario Association of Optometrists, including a term as President, and was a member of the Council of College of Optometrists of Ontario for 10 years.

Don was an accomplished track and field athlete in his school years and became a keen outdoorsman, enjoying canoeing, boat-building and boating - especially gunk-holing, golfing, fishing and hunting with many friends. He was a woodworker/turner, winemaker and gardener. After retirement in 1990, Don added new hobbies of genealogy and wood carving.

Don was predeceased by his parents, Alda - his adored wife of 65 years, sister and brother-in-law Helen and Merlin Stewart, and nephew Donald Stewart, late of Casper Wyoming. He is survived by family in Manitoba - nephew Rob Stewart, and his wife Barbara and their sons Duncan and Ryan - and in Ontario - his niece, grand niece and great grand niece Elizabeth Penchoff, Genevieve Penchoff and Mary-Jean Penchoff-Dixon (Orillia); niece Anastasia and husband Mat Schumacher (New Hamburg); niece-in-law Sally Stewart (Kingston). Don is also survived by several cousins and their families and has recently enjoyed the company of Brian MacLennan (Burlington), John Dick (Wasaga Beach) and Dorothy George (nee Dick, Barrie).  He leaves behind especially dear friends, Ellenor Dixon of Bass Lake, and Mary McIsaac of Udney, and Elaine McCreith of Oro-Medonte. In addition to these people, he leaves wonderful memories with the staff and residents of Champlain Manor and a multitude of former patients, colleagues, associates, and friends.

In all aspects of his life, Don was a true gentleman and gentle man with a quiet sense of humour. Don lived by four words: love, peace, gratitude and forgiveness and he shared that philosophy in word and deed with everyone he met.

The family thanks those involved in Don’s care, at Champlain Manor where he lived for the past 5+ years and more recently at Orillia Soldiers Memorial Hospital and Mariposa House Hospice. Don’s natural gentle charm endeared him to everyone who met him and they tended him with great kindness and professionalism.

As per his wishes, Don has been cremated.  A time of Visitation and Service will take place at the St. James' Anglican Church, 58 Peter St., N., Orillia, on Tuesday, September 20, 2022.  Visitation to take place at the church in the Parlour from 1pm until time of service at 2 pm.  Interment following at St. Andrew's - St. James' Cemetery, Orillia.

Don supported many local beneficent organizations.  If desired, memorial donations to any local charity or medical facility would be in keeping with his wishes.  Messages of condolence are welcomed at