Tony Gosgnach

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Linda Gibbons’s daughter passes away at age 45: Gibbons remains in jail

Tony Gosgnach

LINDSAY, ON, September 17, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – On September 11, pro-life activist Linda Gibbons was sentenced to the maximum sentence of six months in jail for picketing outside the Morgentaler abortion center in Toronto. Four days later she received news that her daughter Kimberley had passed away in hospital in Lindsay, Ontario at the age of 45.

Kimberley Anne Gibbons had suffered a debilitating stroke in her hometown in May and, despite being transported to Toronto for treatment at one point, never recovered. Friend and supporter John Bulsza said that Linda has two surviving daughters and a son, who along with Kimberley’s spouse cared for her during her months of hospitalization. 

Linda visited with Kimberley often after the stroke. She felt her daughter was in good enough hands with the rest of the family to once again go demonstrate – and be arrested – outside the Morgentaler abortion site a few weeks later. 

Gibbons has spent years in jail for repeatedly breaking "bubble law" ordinances that prohibit pro-life activities outside abortion clinics in order to try to counsel abortion-bound women. During the sentencing hearing earlier this month, Judge Feroza Bhabha lambasted Linda for not appreciating that abortion is “a legal right” and for acting as “a martyr for her cause.” 

Bulsza visited Gibbons at the Vanier Centre for Women in Milton the day after the passing and described her spirits as “good,” but solemn. Linda was buoyed by a telephone conversation with her other daughter Kathy and was pleased to hear that another daughter, Bev, and granddaughter, Kayla, were helping with funeral arrangements. 

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Bulsza said the question now is whether Vanier will allow Linda to attend funeral services, scheduled for Lindsay on Saturday. Linda expressed that she was not interested in attending if cremation had taken place and if she could not meet with the rest of her family. However, it is Bulsza’s understanding that the cremation has not yet taken place, so it is possible she may attend. Another obstacle would be posed if prison staff require her to be accompanied by an armed and uniformed prison guard and if she is not allowed to change out of her prison garb. 

Public visitation is scheduled for Saturday from noon to 2 p.m. at the Stoddart Funeral Home, 24 Mill Street in Lindsay, with the service beginning at 2 p.m. Interment to follow at the Riverside Crematorium, 347 Lindsay Street South in Lindsay, with a reception following at a residence in Little Britain. If desired, donations may be made to the Humane Society of Kawartha Lakes. More information and an online book of condolences can be found at the funeral home’s website: www.stoddartfuneralhome.com/book-of-memories/1671816/Gibbons-Kimberley/obituary.php. 

Cards and letters of condolence may be sent to Linda at the Vanier Centre for Women, 655 Martin Street, Box 1040, Milton, ON, L9T 5E6. Follow these guidelines to ensure your missive gets through, as mail is screened and read by prison staff: 

1.     Do not use stickers of any kind on the envelope or card. 

2.     Do not send any laminated cards, bookmarks, prayer cards, pro-life pamphlets and such. Non-laminated items are acceptable. 

3.     Do not ask Linda direct questions about daily activities at the detention centre. 

4.     Put your address directly in the card or letter (as sometimes the mail sorter keeps the envelope).

5.     If you would like to send a monetary gift, it must be a money order made out to “Linda Gibbons.” The detention centre will deposit the money directly into her account.

6.     Only a maximum of one or two pages of reading material or pamphlets may be sent. Pro-life material that shows the development of the baby – but not post-abortion photos – is permissible and is often shared with other women in the prison. Books should not be sent, as they will not be delivered.

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