March 23, 2022
In loving memory ~
Irena passed away peacefully on March 23, 2022, at Nelson Jubilee Manor with family by her side.
Born in Lithuania in 1922, Irena saw the happiness of her early life brought to an abrupt end by the Soviet occupation of her country in 1941, which separated her from her immediate family. Thanks to the kindness of relatives and others, she survived further turmoil and dislocations of the war years in her homeland and in Germany before coming to Canada in 1948. In Ottawa she met another immigrant, John Glasgow from England. They married in 1950 and lived in Victoria for four years before moving to West Vancouver, where they spent a happy 50 years in their hillside home overlooking the ocean. After John’s death in 2006, Irena moved to Nelson to be near her daughter, Jennifer Zibin.
Irena received her first dental degree in Lithuania in 1944 and practised there, in Germany and in Canada, where she obtained a second degree from the University of Alberta. She was deeply dedicated to her profession and especially to serving her children patients, travelling up and down the B.C. coast to provide treatment to First Nations communities before spending the greater part of her 45-year career as a public health pediatric dentist for the City of Vancouver. When she first started practising in B.C. in 1955, she was one of only five women dentists in the province. Later, as a clinical lecturer in the Faculty of Dentistry at U.B.C., she trained many more women who went on to serve many communities in B.C. and elsewhere.
After retiring in 1982, Irena continued to pursue her many lifelong interests, which included reading; tending to her large rose garden; volunteering with the school district, nursing homes and the United Church; and dressmaking, at which she excelled. She found a special happiness in her grandchildren, and her long life gave her the great pleasure of seeing them grow up and the joy of having a great-grandchild in her final years.
Irena thrived in her move to Nelson and thoroughly enjoyed activities with the University Women’s Club, the United Church, a seniors’ exercise group and many new friends. She appreciated Nelson’s friendly atmosphere and always enjoyed running into acquaintances in town who would greet her by name.
Irena will be sadly missed and lovingly remembered by her son Peter, daughter Jennifer, son-in-law Serge Zibin and her beloved grandchildren Nicholas Zibin (Sarah), Eli Zibin and Isabel Glasgow and great-granddaughter Sasha Zibin. She is also survived by relatives in Lithuania, Canada, the United States and Great Britain.
Heartfelt thanks are extended to the caring and compassionate staff of Nelson Jubilee Manor and to special caregiver Cathy-Jo Wright. A private family service will be held at a later date.
Time, like an ever-rolling stream,
Soon bears us all away.
We fly forgotten, as a dream
Dies at the opening day.
— Isaac Watts 1719
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