After a brief and valiant fight with cancer, Christopher (Chris) Gleeson PhD., P.Eng. passed away as he lived, with courage, dignity and grace.
Chris was born in Ottawa, August 13, 1931, to Denis and Norah Gleeson, (Tipperary, Ireland). The family moved to Montreal where he studied at Loyola High School and went on to receive his BSc from Loyola College in 1953.
Chris pursued postgraduate studies at McGill University. In 1956, he earned an MSc in Geology, and in 1960, he was awarded his PhD in Economic Geology and Applied Geochemistry.
This was the beginning of his remarkable 60-year career as a distinguished scientist, explorer, pioneer and innovator.
After working with the GSC, SOQUEM and privately held exploration companies, Chris formed C.F. Gleeson and Associates Ltd. In the following decades mineral exploration projects and international development work took him to Burkina Faso, Algeria, Cameroon, Botswana, Guinea, Jamaica, Zambia, Slovakia, Spain, Malaysia, Ireland, Sweden, Saudi Arabia, Columbia and Brazil as well as Canada and the United States.
In 1984, he co-founded Kinbauri Gold Corporation. His extensive experience in applied heavy mineral studies of precious minerals have led to significant discoveries in gold and diamond deposits here in Canada, Spain and West Africa.
He was the recipient of two Barlow Gold Medals from the Canadian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy.
Chris was a founding member and Fellow of the Association of Exploration Geochemists; Life Member of: Society of Economic Geologists, Canadian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, and Prospectors and Developers Association.
He aimed for excellence in all aspects of his life. This was evident in his passion for gardening. Each year his ‘plot’, the size of a small hobby farm, produced a cornucopia of vegetables, fruit from his carefully tended trees, and flowers. A harvest enjoyed by all.
With equal intensity, at 65, Chris rekindled his boyhood passion for golf. He walked the course at Upper Canada Golf Club rain or shine, and had an enviable handicap which he topped it off with two holes in one.
Chris is survived by Marion (Seagram), his loving wife and partner of 55 years. Together they had four children, Chris (Karen Urqhart), Timothy (Alice Beatson), Erin, and Darcy.
He will be greatly missed by grandchildren Tara-Lynn, Angela, Emily, Samantha, Ryan, Flint and Fiona and daughter-in-law Allison.
Chris was predeceased by his sister Johanna Marciniak and brother Dennis. Remaining and much saddened by their loss are brothers Danny (Monique Graham), Kevin (Patricia Truman), Monica Foley (Brian), sister-in-law Eleanor (Gleeson) and Chris’s many nieces and nephews.
Chris received superb care and much kindness from Dr. Wayne Domanko and the nursing staff at Winchester District Memorial Hospital.
Visitation was held Tuesday, May 22 from 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. at Marsden and McLaughlin Funeral Home in Iroquois.
Mass of the Christian Burial was celebrated Wednesday, May 23 at 1:30 p.m. at St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church in Morrisburg.
Donations to Winchester District Memorial Hospital would be welcome. Online condolences may be made at marsdenmclaughlin.com