Dearly loved by his wife Lesley, adored by his daughters Pat (Greg), Colleen (Bruce), Beverley (Brad), and his grandchildren Bo (Meghan), Zack, Mariah (Joni), Shane, Brock (Chantal), and Brynn; predeceased by his parents René and Lucienne, and his first wife Mary.

Gérard lived life to the fullest. He enjoyed a very privileged upbringing in the outskirts of Paris, where his grandfather Antoine was his hero. Antoine introduced Gérard to pole vaulting, a passion that continued throughout his life. One of Gérard’s proudest moments was when he won the pole vault at French Junior National Championships. Antoine and Gérard also spent many happy hours fossil hunting in the quarries of Pontoise. Mountain-climbing was another passion, and Gérard’s ascents included Mt. McKinlay, the Matterhorn, Mt. Blanc, Mt. Rainier, Mt. St. Helens (before the eruption), and Mt. Baker. Mt. Shuksan always eluded him, primarily due to bad weather. His trips to Mt. Arrowsmith were legendary. Gérard’s father introduced him to the joys of Formula One car racing (the driver Louis Rosier was a family friend). And although Gérard was simply an enthusiastic spectator, anyone who has driven with him knows that Gérard liked speed.

At the end of his stint in Algeria during the war (part of his National Service), Gérard wanted to escape. He came to Victoria where his friend Henry was working and met Mary, his first wife. Although trained in hotel and restaurant management, Gérard found work in the Operating Room of the Victoria General Hospital, where he spent many happy years. He also continued to pole vault and competed in Masters competitions around the world. At the same time, he was the track coach at UVic in the 1970s, and a volunteer pole vault coach for the Victoria Track and Field club for almost fifty years. More than anything, Gérard wanted his athletes to love the sport.

Despite living in Victoria for most of his life, Gérard remained rigidly French: he always wanted bread at meals, wine was a staple, and kissing on greeting was de rigeur. His pride and joy were always his daughters.

Rest in peace Gérard. With the help of your beloved dog Kir, your grandfather Antoine will find you.

Many thanks to the staff in ICU at the Jubilee, with special thanks to Alison and the care she gave Gérard during his final hours.

A Funeral Service to honour Gérard, will be in the Sequoia Centre at McCall Gardens, 4665 Falaise Drive, Victoria, BC, on Tuesday, April 16, 2024 at 2:00pm, with The Rev. Fr. John Domotor, officiating. Burial will follow next door at the Royal Oak Burial Park, after which friends are invited to return to the Sequoia Centre for refreshments.

Condolences may be offered to the family below.

McCall Gardens

  • Erica Dodd

    Dear Lesley,
    Gerard was a gentleman and a friend. We feel his presence amidst us all the time and miss him dearly. Even Alan recognized him at Pepper’s the other day! Remembering fondly the many good times we had together.
    With love from Erica and Frances

  • Madeleine Fort

    Dear Lesley,

    We were very sad to learn of Gerard’s death. We have happy memories of dinners at Bob and Olga’s. We are offering our sincere condolences.

    Madeleine and Michel Fort

  • Aron

    I met Gérard when he was training my friend Justin Robinson.
    The first time he saw me he was determinated to make me a great pole vaulter.
    I loved this moment in 1996. I will never forget that, never forget him, his welcomed and his way of sharing his passion. Friend of Maurice Houvion, you both inspired me. Rest in peace my friend.
    Haïdy Aron-Campan
    French athlete.

  • Noreen Nash

    It was always a pleasure to work with Gerry. The world was a better place because of him.
    He will be missed.

  • William Ritchie

    I was at the funeral today after not seeing the family for more than 40 years. It was very special for me to see how Gerard’s children had grown and matured. It also gave me special memories of when I went to France with Beverley and stayed at the old home outside of Paris. I ate remarkable food at the home including horse meat which was very good! Lulu took us on a wonderful tour of the countryside lasting several days. I drove! We visited Mont Saint-Michel. I still have a special cork screw and small bowl I purchased on that trip. I met the Great grandmother who was still alive. She always put water in her red wine.

    Gerard had a fulfilling life. He lived a long and adventurous life. His death like all family deaths is very painful especially to the children .
    What he would want would be for his daughters to look after themselves and in particular look after their children.

  • Gary Barber

    Gerard made an immeasurable contribution to the sport of track and field. He was always cheerful and supportive of every athlete at the track. His knowledge and skill in coaching pole vault was so evident as his athletes achieved impressive performances. Please accept my condolences and celebrate that Gerard Dumas was an amazing man!

  • Joel Thompson

    Immense sadness upon learning of Gérard’s passing. Gérard was a kind and generous person and we shared many wonderful memories and hikes. We will miss his presence in the world. Joel & Gaynor

  • SERRE Marie -Laure

    Dear Lesley, such good memories with Gerard.
    We remember his humor and hospitality.
    We are all with you, Patricia and Colleen in thoughts more than 8000 km from Victoria.
    Marie-Laure, Hubert, Baptiste and Camille

  • Ian Gallagher

    Condolences to the Family. RIP GERARD

  • Lorne A. Shaw

    Lesley I was so sad to hear of Gerard’s passing. I now regret even more that I never made one of the Arrowsmith expeditions.
    Gerard was always great fun to work with. We enjoyed so much the (too few) dinners we shared.
    And it was so wonderful to see how fond he was of Kir 1 and 2.
    I guess I will have to remember my birthday on my own now!

    With heartfelt condolences

    Lorne & Johanne

  • Marilyn Clements

    My condolences to you Lesley. Gerard was a small guy with a huge presence and I suppose your life with him hasn’t always been easy but ……oh so I interesting! .
    We first met Gerard almost forty years ago when son Owen began pole vault training with Gerard and Victoria Track. Little did Owen realize then what a ride, what an adventure he was in for. Certainly Gerard enriched the lives of his athletes. There were so many highlites, including of course The Commonwealth Games. Aside from his family Gerard was very caring of his athletes even after they’d left the field.
    His presence in the world of Victoria track will be greatly missed.

  • Aussutre


    in memory of all the good times spent in Paris with my cousin in our youth. Claude and Jeannine will not forget you.
    friendly thoughts For you Lesley.

  • Deb Scott

    Although Gerard never coached me, in my running career, he could always be counted on to be an enthusiastic supporter of all Track & Field athletes. His presence during practices at UVIC was a given – working hard with his athletes as we worked hard in our running training. He was the most kind and genuinely joyous person, who had a warm heart and time for everyone. Gerard was such an amazing person, athlete and coach and it was a privilege to get to know him through athletics.
    Condolences to the family.❤️

  • Trudie McDdonald




  • marie wilson

    Words cannot express how much I will miss him and how great was the privilege of knowing Gerard. I knew him from the earliest days of my Nursing training in St. Joe’s. About 55 years. His energy and sense of humour were over-the-top. I,too, got to experience the legendary Mt Arrowsmith climb. Sort of a rite of passage. He always had time for everyone. When my son Paul was very small, Gerard and Lesley took him to the gym at UVIC when Gerard was doing his coaching. Paul loved it! The dinners and wine drinking evenings will be remembered, mostly. Many of the Gerard stories can only be told face to face in select company.

    I am sorry to miss his final send-off, but will be thinking of you all.

    Marie and Glen Wilson

    Marie and Glen Wilson

  • Shane Mackie

    Grandpa you are one of the best! I love you so much
    Thank you for Everything!


  • Dustin Hicks

    Gérard shared his passion for mountain climbing with me at a young age on those famous Arrowsmith climbs. Those trips left a lasting and indelible love for the outdoors in which I have passed this passion on to my family. I will always miss that mischievous grin and kind encouragement. My condolences to his family. He was a wonderful person who will always have a special place in my heart.


    I have so many good memories of Gerard from times at the old St Joe’s and “the new Vic General

  • Wendy & David Hicks

    You have our deepest sympathy.
    Gérard will always hold a special place in our hearts.
    David and I will miss him.
    Our memories of Gerard will be treasured and shared with all of our family.
    Lots of love and hugs xx
    Wendy, David and family

  • Yvette

    Hi Lesley. Sooo sad to hear about Gerard. In his active life, he was our own legend in the Operating Room at the VGH. He got along with everyone. Thinking of you Lesley.
    Hugs. Yvette

  • Kara Schaefer

    It was an honour to know Gérard. He never failed to make me laugh and I have many fond memories from pole-vaulting with him. I learned so much from him. Thank you Gérard.

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