In loving memory of Kristin Joanne Heasman, who passed away peacefully surrounded by an army of love at the North Bay Regional Health Centre on July 23, 2021. Kristin fought a short courageous battle with an aggressive cancer. She was 47.
Born on August 2, 1973, our dear Kristin began her life journey of resilience, determination and independence. Because Kristin was born with a severe form of Spina Bifida, she faced several medical challenges as an infant, child and young adult. Fortunately, Kristin was born into this world as a fighter, and she tackled each bump in the road with heroic and wondrous amounts of perseverance and optimism. While this fighting spirit was necessary to address her own medical battles as a young person, she continued to use her superpower strength to support equity and inclusivity for all people in her adult years.
Kristin was raised to be a strong independent young woman by her loving supportive parents, Wayne and Joanne Heasman, in New Liskeard, Ontario. Because of their love, devotion, and fortitude, Kristin learned to live independently at a young age and was able to fully participate in music festivals, Tri Town Youth Entertainers, Brownie and Girl Guides, swimming lessons, piano lessons and summer camps. Kristin had a large circle of friends due to her outgoing friendly nature and enjoyed many play dates and birthday parties at 499 Ross, her family home. Supported by devoted family, friends and teachers, Kristin successfully attended New Liskeard Public School, Dymond Public School and New Liskeard Secondary School. Upon receiving her Secondary School Graduation Diploma, Kristin went on to attend Canadore College where she achieved an Ontario College Diploma as a Social Services Worker. Her passion to work with children inspired her to pursue further studies in early childhood education and developmental services.
Kristin adored working with children and helping others. Her experience dealing with challenges related to her physical disability and her patient kind manner allowed her to effortlessly and instinctively help other children with a range of exceptionalities. She began supporting students with special needs at the Gwen School in New Liskeard and then later moved to Sunset Park School in North Bay where she was an ardent supporter of numerous children for 24 years. Her unwavering loyalty to the school community appeared in classrooms, in the school yard, in the lunchroom, and at extra curricular events for which she volunteered. “Miss Kristin” was an important member of the Royals family because of her caring and nurturing way of ensuring that all children felt safe, accepted and welcomed. Kristin’s commitment to helping others was recognized in 2015 when she received an Ontario Volunteer Service Award for her selfless 18-year dedication to the Sunset Park school community. As a result of her intense determination and drive to build a life of independence, Kristin’s most significant achievement will be her powerful lasting impact on changing mindsets about individuals with disabilities.
Kristin loved life, and time spent with her was full of her robust warm laugh, her witty sense of humour and on occasion, her colourful language. Her unrelenting loyalty and unconditional love created deep bonds with a large circle of friends. Aunt Kristin was a zealous card player, craft program coordinator, and passionate cheerleader to her nieces Madyson, Jaime and Maryn and nephew Sydney. Kristin showed unconditional love and support to her sister and brother-in-law, Kelly and Joel Sharp, and to her brother and sister-in-law, Scott and Kate Heasman. She was a lifelong friend and confidant to Lisa Taylor (nee Whittle). Kristin loved deeply and she touched the lives of countless people. Her immense heart will be greatly missed by her parents and siblings, nieces and nephew, and many aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends.
Kristin's family would like to thank the medical staff at the North Bay Regional Health Centre that devoted themselves to her treatment and well-being over the last several weeks. A celebration honouring our “wonder woman” will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family will gratefully acknowledge contributions to the Temiskaming Foundation (www.temiskamingfoundation.org) where the Kristin Heasman Fund will be established.
Kristin will always be on our minds, and forever in our hearts.