Cover photo for Justina (Jessie) Melquist (Nee Loewen)'s Obituary
Justina (Jessie) Melquist (Nee Loewen) Profile Photo
1923 Justina 2017

Justina (Jessie) Melquist (Nee Loewen)

March 28, 1923 — March 28, 2017

1923 ~ 2017


Jessie passed away peacefully with family by her side on July 13, 2017 at the age of 93

Mom was born December 23, 1923 in Grigorievka, Ukraine, a small Mennonite village.  She was the daughter of Elizabeth (Liese) and Gerhard Loewen.  She immigrated to Canada with her parents and two older sisters in 1925.  Her family farmed in Winkler, Manitoba until 1934 when her parents with a family that had grown to nine children moved to a farm in Grunthal, Manitoba.  Mom finished grade 8 in Grunthal and had to leave school to work on the farm.  She was determined to finish school and become a teacher so she took correspondence and evening courses and eventually finishing grade 11 at Isaac Newton High School in Winnipeg.  She then took a year off to work as a Permit Teacher at a one room school in Lister East Manitoba to earn money to keep going to school.  Mom graduated from Steinbach High School in 1948 and got her second permit teaching job at Riverland School outside of Lac du Bonnet, Manitoba.  While living in the teacher’s cottage next to the school she met our dad Albert Melquist.  Mom left Riverland after teaching one year to attend Tuxedo Normal School and graduated in the spring of 1950.  In the fall of 1950 she returned to teach at Riverland School and resumed her friendship with our dad.

Mom and Dad were married in August 1951.  They lived in their house next to Riverland School where they raised their three jewels, Ruby, Pearl, and Coral.  Mom loved living in the country, gardening, picking berries and spending time with her family.  Later when her girls were grown and had families of their own she loved when her grandchildren came and visited.

Mom’s hands were never idle.  In the winter when she couldn’t get outside she would make quilts and put together “Memory Books” to give away to family and friends.  She had an amazing memory and was the historian in the family.  She knew everyone’s birthday and anniversary.  She loved to record events in her journals.

She was predeceased by her loving husband of 50 years Albert Melquist and her dear daughter Pearl Melquist. She will be lovingly remembered by her daughters, Ruby and Coral (Jeff), her grandchildren, Patricia (Lewis), Colin (Teresa), Elizabeth (Jordan) and James.  She was a proud grandparent to five great grandchildren. She will be missed by her surviving sisters, Mary, Helen (Frank), and Sara, as well as numerous nieces and nephews.

The family would like to thank the nurses and aides from the Palliative Care Program for their kind and compassionate care that enabled Mom to stay in her home the last few months.  Thank you to the staff of U5 at Victoria Hospital for the special care given to mom.  In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to CancerCare Manitoba.

A celebration of Mom’s life will take place on Tuesday, August 29 at 11:00 a.m.  at Sobering Funeral Chapel in Beausejour, Manitoba.  A private internment will take place at Riverland Cemetery, Lac du Bonnet.

God has you in his arms

And we have you in our hearts

We love you Mom

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