Grappling with Grief


James “Jimmy Van” VanderLinden

The founder of Grappling with Grief.  Similar to his father before him, Jimmy left his small town at the age of 24 in search of new opportunities and settled in the city of Toronto where he and a partner launched a marketing company in 2011 that became a nine-figure per year business.  Upon hearing the news of his father’s cancer diagnosis, Jimmy hired a film crew and produced a documentary called “Cortina” about the lives of his parents as a keepsake for his children.  He found comfort and healing in that project, and so following his sister’s diagnosis he sought out a new venture to help him cope as well as to help others, and that is how GwG came to be.

Russel Drew

Jimmy’s long-time friend and corporate attorney,  Russel graduated from York University in 2004 where he made the Dean’s list.  He went on to receive his law degree in 2008 from the University of Western Ontario and was called to the bar the following year.  In 2019 he was a recipient of the Lexpert Rising Stars Award which celebrates Canada’s leading lawyers under 40.  Russel is currently a partner in a major Canadian firm whose specialty is mergers and acquisitions.

Ron Gill

The husband of Sheri Gill and brother-in-law of GwG’s founder.  Ron became part of the VanderLinden family in the early 1990’s after meeting Sheri through his sister Kelly.  He entered the shipping industry, bought his own truck and spent the better part of twenty years transporting cargo to various parts of Canada and the United States.  He and Sheri eventually developed a passion for the water, and boating on the St. Lawrence River in Ontario, Canada became a recreational pastime.  Jimmy subsequently developed the same passion, and teamed up with Ron to oversee the recruitment, acquisition, renovation and maintenance of waterfront rental property.