Feb. 14, 1934 ~ Apr. 12, 2022
Peacefully, Merna passed away at the Pinawa Hospital knowing how much she was loved and with her eldest son at her side.
Predeceased by her husband Arthur of 55 years in 2014. Her parents were John and Cassie Brandt and her in-laws were Pat and Exilda Lodge. She was also predeceased by her siblings Bernice, Albert, Betty, and Darlene and her stepmother, Freda (Beck) Brandt.
Merna is survived by her four children and their families: Kenneth (Cindy) Lodge (Bryce & Alia- Bowen, Isla) (Brenden & Kayla); Karen (Carl) Nilsson (Laura & Marc) (Brenlee & Cody – Carson) (Dael & Clayton – Elias, Archer); Bryan (Christine) Lodge (Kerri & Brent – Blake) (Carley); Catherine (Ryon) Sellers (Lance) (Shane & Cherish). Merna will also be missed by family friend Dean Teten of Omaha, Nebraska as well as many extended family and friends in the U.S. and Canada.
Merna was born in Iowa and grew up helping on the family dairy farm near Council Bluffs. She was a polio survivor as a teen, which prevented her from graduating high school. While on a fishing trip with her parents in Canada, she met Arthur and they married Dec.27, 1958. After the birth of Ken, they moved to Glenwood, Iowa to be closer to Merna’s parents. Sadly, her Mom passed away when Ken was only eight months old. Over the next several years, Merna and Art added Karen, Bryan and Catherine to their family, all born in Iowa, and Merna’s Dad remarried after seven years. Merna’s wonderful stepmother Freda and her family fit right in. During their years in Glenwood, Art and Merna enjoyed 10-pin bowling and many Sunday dinners at the farm. Whenever possible, they would pack up the kids and head to Canada to visit.
In 1973, Art and Merna purchased his parent’s home in Lac du Bonnet and the family immigrated to Canada where Merna settled into her new life, busy with being a wife and mother. Her family always came first, and she made sure meals were always ready and everyone had everything they needed. She was a hard worker, doing part-time jobs whenever she could. She became well known in Lac du Bonnet and area through her house cleaning work for people and many years of calling Bingos. She and Art grew big vegetable and flower gardens, which led to freezing and canning the produce. She loved flower shopping at the greenhouse every spring. Merna was so happy to see her childrens’ marriages to wonderful partners and then to have grandchildren and great-grandchildren to love. (She was excited to hear Kerri and Brent are expecting in July.) Family dinners always included Merna’s signature sweet potato casserole, “Granny” beans, fruit salad, and of course her desserts! The little house always managed to accommodate the growing family.
When her first grandchild, Laura, was 5 months old, Merna cut back on some of her work so she could babysit. Later on, she enjoyed helping out at the recycling shop that Karen co-owned in Town, where exercise and good company were beneficial after her diabetes diagnosis. She and Art enjoyed going for short drives and out for suppers, and when visitors came, playing “crap” and “the marble game”. With Catherine and her family living in Alberta, Merna would occasionally hop on a train or bus sometimes with a grandchild in tow, to visit.
After Art’s passing, Merna wanted to stay in her home. She looked forward to all the phone calls and visits from family, friends and neighbors. Over the last seven years she had the companionship of two amazing cats (Fig and then Midnight) who she loved and enjoyed immensely.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Merna’s memory to any organization to help people of the Ukraine, the Pinawa Hospital, or a charity of one’s choice would be appreciated.
As per Merna’s wishes, there will be no service. Cremation has taken place.Print This Obituary & Condolences