After a long, fulfilled and blessed life, our mother Helen Irene McConnell (née Pateman) went peacefully to be with her Lord on March 23, 2020 at the Elrose Health Centre.
Irene and her twin sister Ivy were born November 22, 1917 at Glamis, SK with a combined weight of 6 ½ lbs. Irene grew up on the farm and took her schooling in the Glamis area. In her youth, she enjoyed sewing, playing ball and tennis. Irene met Avery McConnell and they were married on December 14, 1941. They lived on the farm at Wiseton and had six children. Mom worked alongside Dad raising cattle and operating a successful gravel and redi-mix concrete business. Mom always grew a large garden and cooked many meals for her family and their many hired men. She enjoyed her flower beds, roses being her favourite. Mom and Dad enjoyed 53 wonderful years together before he passed.
Irene had a very strong faith and loved the Lord. She was a lifetime active member in the United Church. She enjoyed singing in the choir, teaching Sunday School and being the organist for Sunday services for over 40 years. She was also involved in the UCW and the Rebeccah Lodge. She was a devoted wife, loving mother, grand-mother, great-grand-mother and great-great-grandmother – her family was her pride and joy. She passed on her musical talents to her children and enjoyed many musical birthday celebrations and events throughout the years.
In 2005, she moved from the farm to McNab Place in Rosetown and in 2015 to the Elrose Health Centre where she received excellent and compassionate care until her passing.
Irene is survived by her children: Don (Carol) McConnell, Ron (Darlene) McConnell, Pat (Bill) Tuttroen, Keith McConnell, Malcolm (Judy) McConnell and Dianna (Doug) Fullerton; 17 grandchildren and their spouses, 26 great-grandchildren and 1 great-great grandchild; sister Elsie Hanel-Jones, sister-in-law Jean (Cliff) Patemen as well as numerous nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her parents Jack and Minnie Pateman, husband Avery in 1994, daughter-in-law Maureen McConnell, sisters Dorothy McCurrah and Ivy Whyte, brothers Stan and Cliff Patemen, brothers-in-law Walter McCurrah, Les Whyte, Joe Hanel, and Newt Jones; sister-in-law Helen Pateman, and Avery’s sisters and spouses, Olive (George), Elva (Joe), Mildred (Cyril), Annetta (Barney) and several nieces and nephews.
Our family would like to thank the staff at the Elrose Health Centre for the excellent care Mom received over the last five years. We are especially grateful for the way you treated both her and us like family, especially in these last few weeks in the midst of such challenging times. Your kindness will not be forgotten.
A celebration of Irene’s life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Elrose Health Care Auxiliary, PO Box 593, Elrose, SK, S0L 0Z0.
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