McMaster University

McMaster University

Memorial service on Friday for "vibrant" nursing student

Brianne Gardhouse
Brianne Gardhouse

A memorial service will be held on Friday, July 13 for a 21-year-old nursing student who will be remembered for her quick smile, passion for nursing, and love of sports.

Brianne Gardhouse, from Chesley, Ont., died early Sunday in a car accident while on her way home from a friend’s wedding, where she was a bridesmaid. She was a Mohawk College student about to enter her third year of the McMaster Mohawk Conestoga Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) Program.

The service celebrating Brianne’s life will be held on Friday at 2 p.m. at Chesley District High School, located at 231 4th Ave. S.E. Inurnment will be at the Chesley Cemetery. The flags at McMaster will fly at half-mast on Friday as well.

Rose Stone, a Mohawk professor who was Brianne’s clinical tutor this past year, said she was a vibrant young woman who was "over-the-moon excited" about her first in-hospital clinical experience last fall, despite her initial anxieties.

"I watched Brianne grow so beautifully over the semester into a confident beginning nurse, in love with what she was doing," said Stone. "She was gentle and caring with the elderly population, and loved to take the time to listen to them and hear their stories. She was always upbeat, with a quick smile." 

Brianne was also very athletic, enjoying soccer and volleyball, but she really excelled in ringette. She was a member of the AAA Western Region All-Star team in 2008 which played in the Ontario Winter Games.

Kirsten Culver, an assistant professor of nursing at McMaster, said Brianne was very much loved by her classmates and that they are struggling with the loss.

"The loss of any student affects the university community as a whole," said Culver. "Brianne's untimely passing is especially tragic, since her kind spirit touched many people. Her commitment to nursing and her classmates will always be treasured by those who knew her."

Stone added: "Brianne worked well with her fellow students, and I am sure that she will be missed. I saw a lot of potential in Brianne, and her loss is a loss to the nursing community."

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations to Holy Trinity Anglican Church, to create a scholarship in Brianne’s memory, would be appreciated by the family as expressions of sympathy.

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