Deborah Gillette

Celebration of Life

11:00 am
Saturday, February 13, 2021
Fuller Funeral Home, Inc.
190 Buffalo Street
Canandaigua, New York, United States

Final Resting Place

11:00 am
Tuesday, February 16, 2021
Riverside Cemetery
2650 Lake Avenue
Rochester, New York, United States

Obituary of Deborah A. Gillette

Deborah Ann Gillette Farmington – Deborah passed away on Sunday, January 31st, 2021 at the age of 70 due to complications of COVID-19. She passed away in the presence of her husband who is grateful that he could comfort her in the final hours. She was born on November 9, 1950 in Rochester, NY, the daughter of Henry and Lois O'Boyle. She was predeceased by her father. Surviving are her mother, son Aaron and husband Douglas, her aunt Betty O'Boyle, cousins Robert O'Boyle, John O'Boyle, and Ruth (spouse of Robert). Deborah had expressed her desire that Celia Orton (predeceased), a friend of the family, dearly loved by Deborah, be remembered for her compassion, kindness, loving support, and friendship during times in her life that would have otherwise overwhelmed her. Although Deborah was an only child she had an extended family of relatives that lived in the same town. She enjoyed family gatherings with her father's brother and wife (who is the sister of Deborah's mother) who had four (4) sons. To compete with four boys Deborah acquired some "tomboy" attitudes. The socializing served her well. Deborah attended Cardinal Mooney High School in Greece and graduated in June of 1968. Her extra curriculum activities veered toward the theatrical and choir. She recalled how she was dismissed from classes because nuns requested that choir obligations both on and off the school campus required her talented voice. A press clipping from a 1965 Democrat & Chronicle, Theater Notes, shows Deborah and the leading man posing for an announcement of an original musical comedy "The Sky's The Limit". Outside of her high school activities Deborah boarded a favored horse. She took great joy in riding horses in the farmland and orchards of northwestern Monroe county. Her riding friends took special pleasure in their fall horseback rides to Kelly Farm Market for apple cider and doughnuts. The horses knew what they could expect. With anticipation they waited for their doughnuts and soda that the riders held to the corners of the mouth near the bits. Horseback riding remained a favorite interest even when she no longer boarded horses. She encouraged our son to participate in riding lessons. She accompanied him to those lessons and eventually he moved up to equestrian style competition. Her vacations to Colorado included riding in the mountains accompanied by her family. Besides the fun of controlling/leading a horse Deborah decided that more horsepower would be appealing too. She purchased a Corvette in her early twenties. It was speed tested on the long straight runs of the Hamlin Beach State Parkway that follows the shore of Lake Ontario. She always mentioned that the car, upon reaching a certain speed, would settle down and hug the pavement with a vacuum like grip stability. A special day for all mothers is the arrival of a son or daughter. Aaron was born October 4th, 1973. Deborah has always lived with animals as part of her life. Her mother and father had dogs, one of which severely tested her fathers' temperament, when it chewed up the interior upholstery of his car. Deborah raised two Afghan Hounds when she was in her late twenties. They were entered in Kennel Shows. Their unique ability was reserved for licking ice cream cones in her son's hand until the ice cream disappeared, but the cone was untouched. On June 18th, 1982 Deborah Ann O'Boyle and Douglas Gillette were united in vows at Bethany Presbyterian Church in Greece. They have had 38 years of an enduring marriage. Aaron, her son, was the ring bearer and joined the new family this day. There was a period with an absence of pets after Deborah married Douglas in 1982. That was corrected when she introduced a cocker spaniel (Cricket) surreptitiously into the house. Her husband briefly objected but relented and Cricket became a welcome member of the family. There have been two more cocker spaniels (one rescued) and 4 cats. One cat was a stray that Deborah enticed to the house by setting food out on the outdoor deck. The cat moved in without any objections. Deborah worked at Lollypop Farm, six firms and Dr. Brazstowicz as a general accounting clerk from 1968-2000. The changing business climate of the late 20th century resulted in the closure of five of these firms. Deborah's parents house was in Fort Collins, Colorado an easy drive to Rocky Mountain National Park. Garden of the Gods, outside of Colorado Springs, Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton Park were within a comfortable days drive. Deborah and family visited these majestic Rocky Mountain parks. To accommodate her husband's wish Deborah made two backpacking trips in Rocky Mountain National Park including one with the additional company of her cousin John. Bold wildlife encounters included jays that flew down to the campsite to steal scraps of food from an unattended plate when cooking or enjoying a meal and ground squirrels that sneak up on you from behind, when sitting on a rock during a trail break, to forage for food in your backpack. Her cousin John was awakened one morning by what he thought was a giant insect buzzing around in his tent. It turned out this was a hummingbird attracted to his brightly colored hat. A favorite place to visit was her parent's cabin in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, the Red Feather Lakes area. The cabin is on a secluded lot with towering rock piles behind and surrounded with pines. The cabin offers a relaxing retreat as long as one does not mind using an outdoor privy. Visiting wildlife have included moose, a moose and her calf, mule deer and of course ubiquitous jays and ground squirrels. Deborah was an avid reader. Her collection of books and paperbacks numbering in the hundreds testifies to this. She enjoyed Sy-Fi, Fantasy, and interpretive history with a slant by the author of characters caught up in drama, passion and life threatening circumstances. Her book collecting also extended to cookbooks. Her cooking skills were notable and much appreciated by a husband that could grill outside but was limited in food preparation. Deborah discovered a hidden talent late in life. She took up painting. She threw herself enthusiastically in this new found passion. She bought self-instruction manuals and attended art classes in Canandaigua. She was especially pleased when a Canandaigua art gallery placed one of her paintings prominently on display in a front sidewalk window. We now have eight paintings in the house that are proudly displayed on our walls. The paintings will always be a reminder of her indomitable spirit. Deborah entered Eastside Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in April of 2018. Previous to this she had entered Strong Memorial Hospital for cancer treatment that was successfully remediated. Other health complications prevented Deborah from coming home but thankfully distance did not keep Deborah and Doug apart. Deborah's spirit was buoyed by almost daily visits and phone calls. A celebration of her life will be held at the Fuller Funeral Home, 190 Buffalo Street, Canandaigua on Saturday, February 13, 2021 at 11AM. Interment will be at Riverside Cemetery, 2650 Lake Avenue, Rochester on Tuesday, February 16 at 11AM. Family and friends may attend the interment. CDC regulations of face coverings and social distancing will be practiced. In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to your favorite charity.
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