After a long and eventful life, we announce the passing of Anne Rempel, our caring mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and great-great grandmother, at the age of 102, seven days shy of her 103rd birthday. Anne passed away peacefully on June 17, 2020, at St. Boniface Hospital, in Winnipeg, MB.
Left to cherish her memory are her two children; son Don (Shirley) and their children, sons, William (Dina), Neal (Carmen), Nathan (Allana), and Jonathan (Katie) and daughters, Jody (Chris) and Holly (Jeff) all of BC; daughter Connie (Bruce) and their children, sons, Curtis of London, ON and Graeme (Vera) of Calgary, AB; daughter-in-law Darlene (Robert) and her daughter Kim (Gordon); 15 great-grandchildren, one great-great-granddaughter; and numerous nieces and nephews and their families.
Anne was predeceased by her parents, Abram and Susanna Wiebe; husband Henry; son Glenn; grandson Paul; sisters, Olga, Margaret, Erna, and Kay; brother Ab; and infant brother John.
Anne was born at home on June 24, 1917, and raised in the Amsterdam District near the Town of Altona. She attended school there, where her father was the local teacher.
On September 29, 1935, she married her husband Henry, who was a farmer in the Amsterdam District. Their wedding took place in the teacherage. A teacherage was a building that served as a combination school and living quarters and was provided by the school district for teachers who taught in remote, settled areas.
Two sons were born, Glenn (1936) and Don (1941). Don was only three months old when Henry was “called for duty”, and Anne became a single parent until the war ended in 1945.
Following the war a move was made to Myrtle, MB to begin a life of farming. The family now included daughter Connie. However, tragedy struck in 1961 with Henry’s passing, and Anne became a widow at a very early age. In 1962, she moved to Winnipeg, leaving behind the many hardships of being a farmer’s wife during the 40s.
In order to support her family in Winnipeg, she began a career as a seamstress–a skill that she had a true gift for. In early years, her siblings benefitted from her sewing talents and then her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, great-nieces, and great-nephews became the fortunate ones. She sewed and designed many Halloween costumes, nighties, Barbie and baby doll clothes, bridesmaid dresses, and her daughter’s wedding dress. She worked in many different shops and garment factories where piecework was the norm, working conditions were stressful and demanding and workers were paid on a per-piece basis.
Not only was Anne an accomplished seamstress and dressmaker, but she was also a fabulous baker and a skilled and talented artist. Painting with oils was her first choice, but she also dabbled in charcoal and pastels; and did it all with amazing results. Everyone will agree though that Anne’s favourite pastime was reading. She wanted to read the newspaper to “keep in touch with daily news” and enjoyed reading fiction, romance, historical fiction and anything relating to her Mennonite heritage.
Anne was very independent, strong-willed, quick-witted and a somewhat private person. Her devotion and love for her immediate family always shone through in many special and caring ways. She never hesitated in putting her entire family’s welfare and happiness first and before her own.
At age 99, Anne moved into a support-housing residence, Riverwood Square, where she resided until her passing. A special thank-you to all the staff there, but especially the Handel House Companions on the third floor. Their respectfulness, professionalism and compassion were outstanding and greatly appreciated. Also, a sincere thank-you to the doctors and nurses at St. Boniface Hospital who provided exceptional care.
A private Celebration of Life has taken place.
“Those we love don’t go away;
They walk beside us every day.
Unseen, unheard but always near,
Still loved, still missed and held so dear.”