Shirley Ann Telep

November 13, 1952 ~ June 30, 2018

A Yukon Trail Blazer

God saw you were getting tired, when a cure was not to be

He wrapped his arms around you and whispered “come to me”

You did not deserve what you went through so God gave you a rest

His garden must be beautiful for he only takes the best.

And when I saw you sleeping, so peaceful and free from pain, I could not wish back

To suffer that again.

 

Shirley was born in Mayo November 13th1952 to Alice and Wesley Buyck. She was the 4thchild to Alice and 1stChild to Wes. She was born into a large family. 7 sisters and 5 brothers.  Shirley met her husband Henry working at the Stewart Crossing Lodge, moving to Dawson, where they were married in 1972.  Two years later, Shirley and Henry moved back to Mayo where they welcomed a son Ryan, and 11 months later a Daughter, Marcia Dee Dee.

 

Later as a single mother, Shirley was determined to make the best life she could for herself and her children. She worked as a probation Officer in Mayo and when she decided to challenge herself she joined the RCMP.  She was in the force for 30 years and retired just 5 years ago.  In true Yukon trail blazing style, Shirley was the first, First Nations woman in the Yukon to become a member of the RCMP. She was very fortunate to be able to serve all her years as an officer in the Yukon, known as “Speed Gun Katie”.  Shirley was very well respected, and well known in the communities, she was known to be stern and yet had a heart of gold, helping those who needed a hand. Her generosity with her time, her energy, her advice, and in so many other ways provided invaluable support to a remarkable number of people.

 

Shirley was always very independent and worked hard to raise her family. She always had her door open for anyone to visit or stay. She never closed the door on a friend in need, being one of the oldest of 13 kids, she felt the need to take care of everyone, though it was not always her responsibility.   Her dedication to family and friends, and her sense of humour will always be remembered by those who knew her.  She managed to raise a family as a single parent, have a full-time shift work job, show up to everyone’s activities, had every neighbourhood kid over playing at her home, helping family with their children, and adopting 2 of her brother’s boys.

She exposed her children, and her sisters, to many experiences and we all loved to travel with her, first the exciting trips to the big city of Whitehorse (when we lived in the communities) to, Florida, China, Mexico, California, and many other places.  She sure loved to travel. Everyone thinks they have a great mom, but as kids, we KNEW we had a great mom because everybody told us so.  She mothered all our friends who came to the house, even those with perfectly great mothers of their own.

 

In October mom was diagnosed with Cancer and the biggest battle of her life was to begin. With her family beside her we all fought, loved, and supported her. Her since of dignity, pride and stubbornness was never so tested; or well so demonstrated even in the final week and days of mom’s life. Even with a body riddled with cancer and pain, she would still wake up each day, put a smile on her face a no matter how tired she was, would interact and laugh with those who came to visit.  Mom was always independent, determined and in control of her life, and with courage, strength and a strong will she faced death on her own terms and conditions.

 

She was a true Trail Blazer and inspiration for all of her family and friends.

 

Thank you to everyone who has supported our family during these last few months, during mom’s short illness with cancer.  Mom was a fighter and battled with all the strength and courage we all knew she had. She will be greatly missed.

 

Service in Whitehorse, will be held at the Kwanlin Dün Nàkwät’à Kų̀ Potlach House, on Saturday July 7 at 2 p.m.

 

Then we will be bringing Shirley home to Mayo, for a service July 14 at 2 p.m at the Community Hall.

 

21 Comments

  1. Lillian

    A beautiful, strong woman, you will be missed by all that knew and loved you, love Lil xoxo

    Reply
  2. Leah

    So sorry to hear of shirley’s passing she will be missed

    Reply
  3. Christine Lentz

    Sorry to hear about your loss. I worked with your mother for few yrs. She was a great person.

    Reply
  4. Tim Combs

    Very sorry to hear this.A truly great Yukoner has moved on.Doubtful that there are many people in the Yukon that don’t know who she is.My thoughts and prayers are with you all at this time.

    Reply
  5. Jessicamcmurphy

    My condolences to Shirley’s family my thoughts and prayers are with all of you at rhis time

    Reply
  6. Paulette Tremblay

    Sweet Shirley, having met you in the “Junction” I admired your courage as an RCMP. You accomplished so much in this life and everywhere you had to be. Do me a favour and say hi dad, Larry Tremblay. May your family be ever blessed for having had you in their lives. Hugs. Give Jesus a hug for me too.

    Reply
  7. tracey jacobs

    So sorry for your loss. Dee dee and Ryan .

    Reply
  8. Tammy

    Marcia, Ryan and families, so sorry to hear of Shirley’s passing. Love and prayers to you all.

    Reply
  9. Mary and Lee Persinger

    She was truly a great person and loved his honesty. She has left a mark and will be missed!

    Reply
  10. Mary and Lee Persinger

    She was truly a great person and loved her honesty. She has left a mark and will be missed!

    Reply
  11. Heather Saggers

    It takes a minute to find a special person, an hour to appreciate them, and a day to love them, but it takes an entire lifetime to forget them. (author unknown)
    I will miss you my friend but know that while we are mourn your passing and the loss of our friend, others are rejoicing to meet her on the other side.

    always Heather and Daniel Glen

    Reply
  12. Rose Donnessey-Schwarze

    Shirley, I was blessed to have met you and your family here in Watson Lake, it was heartbreaking to hear that you were not well, it was tough to learn that you have left us all forever….especailly the ones who know you and were close, you will not be forgotten, you will always be in my heart and memories!!!

    Reply
  13. Elaine Clark

    So sad. I knew her in Watson Lake and she became a great friend. RIP my friend

    Reply
  14. Kathy lyons

    Our thoughts are with your family at this very sad time. Shirley was a special lady who will be missed by her family and friends alike.
    Kathy and bill lyons

    Reply
  15. Myrna Engren

    I always admired your strength. Fly with the eagles Shirley.

    Reply
  16. Ruth

    We appreciated your service as an officer in Watson!

    Reply
  17. Shirley Karman

    Hard to believe that such a strong, beautiful, courageous woman is gone…..I enjoyed working with Shirley and having a “cold one” every now and then. RIP my friend.

    Reply
  18. Dee dee

    Thank you all for your love and support. Mom was a strong woman and I sure miss her . Love reading all your comments.

    Reply
  19. Kim Hopkins

    Sorry to hear about Shirley . I was a summer student in 1996 and had the pleasure of being her co-pilot. Such a wonderful woman and one of the reasons I joined the RCMP. Rest In Peace Shirley.

    Reply

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