Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Louise Isabel Trimble Willis (1910-2002)

Community activist.

Born at Milltown, New Brunswick on 27 December 1910, the eldest of four daughters of Horace and Ethel Trimble, she received a Bachelor of Music degree from Mount Allison Ladies College. In 1928, she met Errick Willis while at a reception for King George V in Ottawa, and after a 13-year, long-distance romance, the couple were married at Calais, Maine in 1941.

She moved to Winnipeg where she gave birth to three children: Anna Jane Willis (b 1942, wife of Jim Gilchrist), Richard Trimble “Dick” Willis, and Errick “Skip” Willis (b 1948). She dedicated herself to her husband’s political career, culminating in her term as Chatelaine at Government House from 1960 to 1965. She was actively involved in the community as President of the IODE, Middlechurch Home, Melville Wood Guild, and Meals on Wheels. She also served on the Board of the International Music Camp at the Peace Garden and was the first woman appointed to the Board of Governors and subsequently as a Life Governor of Trinity College School. In 1966 the University of Manitoba recognized her public service with an honorary doctorate.

She died at Winnipeg on 28 May 2002.


Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 1 June 2002.

“They will never be forgotten,” Winnipeg Free Press, 31 December 2002, pages A8-A9.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 9 November 2020

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

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