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Abram William (Ben) Giesbrecht

March 21, 1935 – February 4, 2010

On February 4, 2010,  Abe peacefully passed away with his family by his side at the CarmanMemorialHospital at the age of 74.

Left to cherish his memory is his wife of 45 years Edna (nee: Poschner); daughter Phyllis, son Don and wife Racquel; Grandchildren Aila, Joshua, Jane and Ben; Brother George and wife Lydia; numerous in-laws, nieces, nephews and friends.  He was predeceased by his parents John and Margaret; step mother Anna; sister Anne; brother John; brother Pete and brother Abram in infancy.

Dad was born March 21, 1935 to John and Margret Giesbrecht in Kronsgart, Manitoba, the youngest of six children. He grew up on the family farm and attended KronsgartMB Church and was baptized at the age of 15.  In 1952 he moved along with his parents to Morden, Manitoba where he completed his high school education and attended MordenMB Church.  In Morden, Dad was very active in the Church singing in the mixed and male only choirs, taking part in dramas and in his words, best of all, playing softball.

After graduating high school in 1954, Dad joined his brother George on his family farm to give farming a try.  However, he believed God was leading him in another direction and in turn, he followed the lead of his oldest brother John into the teaching profession.  In 1955-56 he attended the ManitobaProvincialNormal School and graduated with his teaching certificate.  Dad’s teaching career began in the one room school houses and school districts that populated southern Manitoba.  He taught at: Deer Creek School 1956-57, Spring Brook School 1957-59, St. Lawrence School 1959-60, Hazel School 1960-62, McDermott School 1962-65 and Carman Elementary 1965-1991, where he taught grade six for most of his teaching years until his retirement.

Dad married the love of his life, Edna, on December 27, 1964, a day he called the most wonderful day of his life. They settled in Carman, Manitoba where they attended CarmanGospelLightChurch.  Dad was very active in the church singing in the choir and being a Ranger Leader for the boys club, Christian Service Brigade, for 10 years. 

Dad and Mom were blessed with two children, Phyllis and Don.  They were further blessed with four grandchildren whom brought Dad much pride and happiness.

Dad was a very social man and loved nothing better than a good board game, a game of cards, visiting with friends and relatives and watching Hockey Night in Canada—or any hockey game for that matter—the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the Toronto Blue Jays.  Dad played softball until he suffered his heart attack and was renowned for his prowess on the mound.  He especially enjoyed a cup of coffee, chocolate pie, caramel popcorn and a cold Dr. Pepper.  For him life was as simple as this.

Dad’s physical health was always a challenge.  In 1981 he was diagnosed with bladder cancer, which he fought for 15 years.  In 1989 he suffered a heart attack, which precipitated his retirement from teaching.  In 1996, he successfully survived major surgery to remove the cancer from his body, which he was thankful to God for extending his life.  In 2003, he suffered from a stroke that would change the course of his, as well as the lives of his family.  Always a fighter Dad did his very best to overcome the effects of his stroke, but with the loss of his mobility and independence,  he spent the last 4 years of his life in the wonderful care of the staff at the Boyne Lodge in Carman.  

Dad believed that this life is a preparation for the life here-after.  He believed that we are blessed to serve God throughout our lives and that salvation is the key to a fulfilling life.

The family would like to thank the wonderful, caring staff at the Boyne Lodge for all they did for Dad over the last four years; the doctors, nurses and staff at Carman Memorial Hospital for their compassionate care for Dad during his last days with us; for the prayers and support of family and friends not only in the last days of life, but throughout his life.

Funeral service will be held on Monday, February 8, 2010 at 2:00 p.m. at FriendsCommunityChurch with Pastor Dale Warkentin officiating. Viewing will take place from Doyle’s Funeral Chapel on Sunday, February 7th from 7:00 p.m. -8:00 p.m.  A private Interment will take place prior to the funeral service.

Memorial donations may be made to Friends of Boyne Park, Box 1644, Carman, Manitoba, ROG OJO or Mennonite Central Committee, 134 Plaza Drive, Winnipeg, ManitobaR3T 5K9.

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