James Jackson opens up about his final months without his wife, the late Denise Bombardier

“It’s the hardest thing for me to imagine Montreal without Denise,” says James Jackson, husband of the late journalist Denise Bombardier for the past 20 years. Jean-Pierre Ferland’s radical church meeting last Friday, the historian said. magazine Hard last months spent without “his Denise”.

“People haven’t seen me since Denise died. It’s been almost a year. It’s the 4th of July, I know, and I’m counting down the days. I knew what she was doing a year ago,” breathes the wife of the famous columnist and writer.

James Jackson considers his wife an important figure in the city of Montreal, as does Jean-Pierre Ferland. That’s why he wanted to greet the singer and his wife, Julie Anne Saumer, during the funeral.

“When I first met Jean-Pierre, he looked at me with a small smile and asked me: “How can we live with Denis Bombardier?” [rires] In the same tone, I said: “We Jean-Pierre complement each other, just like you and Julie Anne!” Since then, every time we saw each other, we talked,” he recalled.

Jean-Pierre Ferland was important to Denis Bombardier.

“It’s on occasions like this that it comes back because I know it should be Denise next to me. I was always two steps behind. She should be here today and I should have come with her,” says the historian.

Photo by Martin Alary

Montreal and Florida without Dennis

Talking about a missing lover seems to be good for James Jackson.

“She walked slowly, she knew something was up, but she thought it was an illness. She didn’t know it was fatal. Even at the end, she didn’t know what was waiting for her because she was talking to me about plans. She wanted to go to Las Vegas, Paris, ” he says.

Realizing the seriousness of his condition, he wanted to remain calm to protect his wife. “I couldn’t tell Denise. I said, “Yeah, we’re going to Vegas, we’re going to Paris.” You shouldn’t lie to your spouse, but sometimes it’s the only way to make the other person trust you.”

James Jackson recounts the moment he came to terms with his wife’s departure; At the end of March, he ended up in their apartment in Florida.

“I distributed small trinkets to those who asked me for souvenirs of Denis. When I got home, I realized that I had accomplished something more emotional and psychological than I had turned the page. It’s like I said goodbye to Florida because I don’t plan on going back without it. Florida tennis. Like Montreal,” he breathes.

She was buried in the municipality of North Hadley, a place dear to Denis Bombardier’s heart.

“She was overjoyed to know she was going to spend eternity in North Hadley,” continues the Dubliner.

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