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Obituary

JOAN WINIFRED RUSSELL (published on October 16, 2010)



JOAN WINIFRED RUSSELL On Monday, October 11, 2010, with family by her side, Joan passed away at age 78, predeceased by her parents, Mary and George Gilbert. Survived by her husband of 55 years, Henry (Hank) and four daughters, Janet Wiebe (Nick), Joanne Russell-Mondor (Ron), Doreen Brenholen (Chris), St. Albert, AB, and Donna Russell (Doug Smith), six grandchildren, Nicholas, Jared, Erica, Blake, Cameron, Andrew. Also survived by sister Joyce Hildred (Jim), Stittsville, ON. Joan was born in Winnipeg in 1931 and lived in Winnipeg all her life. She completed her education at St. John's Tech. When she was in her early teens she lost her mother to cancer leaving a huge gap in Joan's life. Her mother and she were very close and she found it difficult to cope with the loss. She was now in charge of looking after her younger sister Joyce, and running the house helping her dad cope with all the problems of raising a family. She started her working career at Comstock Electric working there for many years. In 1952 she met Hank. They married December 17, 1955. Thus began her new career as wife and mother. Joan and Hank were blessed with four daughters, Janet in 1961, Joanne born in 1963, Doreen followed in 1966 and Donna in 1971. Joan's days and nights were busy tending her family. Hank thanks God that Joan was there for every event in their lives. The Russell's began to build a cottage in 1967 at Rush Bay, Lake of the Woods. With four kids, no electricity or running water and boatloads of food and clothing to transport in the early years of cottaging , Joan and Hank had their hands full. Nevertheless, the family loved their summer escapes to Rush Bay but returning home meant comforts and conveniences of city living for Joan. In between trips to Rush Bay, Joan's gardens were always bountiful at home and at the lake with the freshest of vegetables, fruit, and flowers. Her baking and cooking which she enjoyed, superb. Joan always had photographs of her cherished family as they grew and later her beloved grandchildren. She would always ask first if one would like to see some nice pictures but no one turned her down! She really enjoyed dancing anytime always first to ask Hank Are we dancing? at their many outings. There weren't any refusals from Hank. Joan became a member of the Sphinx Temple #116, Daughters of the Nile, joined the Patrol and enjoyed the activities and many friends she made. Joan and Hank enjoyed numerous Safari Trips with the Shrine and Drum Corps especially the cruise to the Caribbean, which was a highlight for her. In 1998, Joan was diagnosed with breast cancer having two operations and 25 radiation treatments then followed by a clean bill of health. She had beaten cancer. In 2000, Joan was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease stalwartly carrying on as best she could. The family would like to thank Dr. R. Hayward for his kindness and care over the years. Also, the family expresses their gratitude to the nurses and staff at Vista Park Lodge for their 24 hour gracious care and attention, especially in the last few months. At Joan's request, cremation has taken place. A family gathering will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers donations to the Alzheimer Society, 10-120 Donald St., Winnipeg, MB R3C 4G2 or CancerCare Manitoba, 1109-675 McDermot Ave., Winnipeg, MB R3E 0V9 gratefully accepted. CROPO FUNERAL CHAPEL 586-8044


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