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AGNES WALL (published on September 18, 2010)

AGNES WALL It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of Agnes Wall (Dueck), beloved mother, grandmother, sister, and friend, on Tuesday evening, September 14, 2010, at Bethania Mennonite Personal Care Home, at the age of 91 years. She will be fondly missed by her sister Erica Ness (Martin); brother Vic Wall (Mabel); sister-in-law Susie Dueck; sons Robert (Berny), Art (Cheryl), John (Lori); daughter Cathy; and grandchildren Alex, Jake, Erin, and Jeremy. Agnes is predeceased by Robert, her loving husband of 48 years; brothers John, Gerhard, Ferdinand, and Jake; sister Hilda, and brother-in-law Al Regier. Agnes was born on March 23, 1919, in the small Mennonite village of Kadagai in the Crimea, to parents Helene Wall and Johann Dueck. At the age of ten, she and her family escaped Communist Russia on the last train permitted to leave the country. Agnes and her family settled in Altona, Manitoba, where she graduated from the MCI, and then moved to Winnipeg, attended Normal School, and became a teacher, her true calling and vocation. Agnes taught in rural Manitoba until 1949, when she married Robert Wall and started her family, living first in Altona, then briefly in Preston, Ontario. When the family moved to Winnipeg, she resumed her teaching career in the River East School Division, where she worked as a resource teacher at Springfield Heights Elementary School until her retirement in 1981. Upon retirement, Agnes embarked on her second career as a writer, combining her love of teaching with a life-long gift for storytelling. During the eighties and nineties, she became a regular contributor to The Mennonite Mirror, wrote short plays in Low German for church and community performances to raise money for the MCC, and translated a collection of children's Bible stories into Low German which were recorded for radio broadcast to Mennonite communities in South America. In addition to her love of writing and story-telling, Agnes was a life-long reader who stubbornly continued to read even as her vision failed her in her final days. She and husband Robert loved to travel, sharing many happy road trips across Canada and south to Florida, where they spent several winters as snowbirds. In their retirement years, they also travelled a number of times to Europe, the Mediterranean, Russia and the Middle East, all chronicled in stories she has left to her family. She and her husband also loved to entertain relatives and friends, either at their home on DeGraff or at their beloved cottage retreat. She was inordinately proud of her children and grandchildren, and never lost interest in their lives and accomplishments. Even in her declining years, Agnes maintained her cheerful optimism, wry sense of humour, and abiding faith in God and humanity. Mom, you have truly left a legacy in the hearts of those whose lives you've touched. The family wishes to thank the staff of Bethania for their loving care of our mother for the past five years. Funeral services will be held on Monday, September 20, at 10:00 a.m., at North Kildonan Mennonite Church, 1131 Roch St., with interment at Green Acres Memorial Gardens, Hwy. 1. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Mennonite Central Committee.

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