Home > MB Herald January 2010 > People and events > Deaths
John B. Dyck
John B. Dyck died Sept. 7, 2009 after a courageous battle with cancer. He was born July 5, 1936 in Hepburn, Sask. to Benjamin and Marie Dyck. In 1946, the family moved to Abbotsford, B.C. John committed his life to Christ at an early age and was baptized in 1953. He became a member of Abbotsford MB Church, now called Central Heights Church. He married Edith Kineshanko Apr. 20, 1957, and they moved to Vancouver, where they became charter members of Killarney Park MB Church. They later moved to Burnaby, B.C., and attended Willingdon Church. John had a zest for life and always strived to do his best. He was a multi-talented intellectual who was successful in business and all his life endeavours. His selflessness, humble spirit, hard work ethic, and beliefs made him a good example. He donated to many charities, including Stillwood Camp and Conference Centre at Lindell Beach, B.C., where he hoped many would meet the Lord in its peaceful mountain setting. Predeceased by 4 siblings, John is mourned by Edith; children Carolyn, Sandra (Richard); 2 grandchildren; 3 siblings.

Herman E. Wilms
Herman E. Wilms died Sept. 12, 2009. He was born Mar. 19, 1926 in Russia to Edward and Elizabeth Wilms. Together with his family, he arrived in Winnipeg in 1930. He received Christ as Saviour at an early age and was baptized into North End MB Church at 16. In 1948, he married Mary Louise Kroeker who travelled with him to many countries on business trips and to vacation spots. His greatest joy was to spend time with his grandchildren at the family cottage. There, he also spent many hours talking and walking with his Lord and Saviour. A member at Portage Avenue Church, Winnipeg, Herman was actively involved until his diagnosis of aggressive cancer in Sept. 2008. Herman is mourned by Mary; children Edith (Darcy) Normand, Gerry (Janice); 6 grandchildren; 4 great-grandchildren; 3 siblings.

Ben Pauls
Ben Arthur Pauls died accidently on his farm Sept. 24, 2009 at 57. He was born Feb. 24, 1952 to John and Verna Pauls. He went to Winkler (Man.) Bible Camp where he was led to the Lord at age 11. Ben continued his formal education at Winkler Bible Institute and the University of Manitoba, where he studied agriculture in the diploma program. After university, he farmed with his dad and brother Harry. Ben married Joy Garnett on July 14, 1984, built a house on their farm and loved the way of life it provided. Ben was a man with a servant heart. He loved children and taught Sunday school and boys’ club at Manitou (Man.) MB Church. He would rather be involved in practical service and helping maintain the church building and running the sound system than sitting on a committee. He freely used his gifts of servanthood and love for people. For many years he was involved in a Tuesday morning Bible study in the “Upper Room” at Holiday Mountain during the winter months. The times of study and prayer were very special to him. Ben is mourned by Joy; children Anthony, Nicole, Stephanie, and Eric; his mother Verna Pauls; 5 siblings.

David Voth
David Voth died Oct. 6, 2009. He was born Nov. 30, 1923 in the R.M. of Rhineland, Man. to Jacob C. and Sara Voth. David was a respected instructor in several schools including Grunthal and Greenland, but spent most of his career in the English department at Steinbach Regional Secondary School. He was treasurer for his church, and for the Steinbach Flying Club for many years. He enjoyed flying his own plane and travelling by car. He was a member of Steinbach MB Church. Predeceased by 2 brothers, David is mourned by sisters Olga Neufeld, Neta Pauls, Justina Dyck, Esther Wiens, and brothers Cornelius, Harold, Arnold, Alvin.

Albert and Lydia Fast
Lydia Fast died Oct. 7, 2009. She was born Jan. 15, 1924 in St. Boswells, Sask. to John and Eva Sapinsky. Albert Fast died Oct. 13, 2009 at 97. He was born Mar. 13, 1912 in Rush Lake, Sask. to Daniel and Maria Fast. Albert wanted to join the army but was not accepted because of poor feet. He was told that teachers were needed. He taught for 18 years in various towns in Sask. Lydia met Albert through mutual family and friends. They married in 1942. After moving to B.C. in 1958, Albert worked for his brother Ernie for 1 year, but then went back to teaching in Garibaldi, Surrey, and Kimberley, B.C. He became a realtor and later moved to Abbotsford, B.C., in 1971. Lydia was an awesome caregiver, homemaker, and employee in retail sales. They were members at Bakerview MB Church. Albert and Lydia are mourned by children Wally (Juliette), Rick (Mary), Gwen (Jake), Lorna (Jim), Barb; 12 grandchildren; 16 great-grandchildren; 1 great-great-grandchild.

Peter C. Penner
Peter Cornelius Penner died Oct. 11, 2009 at 101. He was born June 11, 1908 in the Crimea, South Russia to Cornelius and Elizabeth Penner. He was baptized June 8, 1924, upon the confession of his faith, and became a member of the Mennonite Brethren church. Peter and his family experienced the stormy years of anarchy, famine, and death during World War I, the Russian Revolution, and Stalin’s reign of terror. In 1929, Peter and his wife, Agenetha, left their village, to escape, via Moscow, to Canada. Early years in Manitoba, then Greendale, B.C., were difficult, with Peter at times riding his bicycle 15 miles to work, tending his farm and caring for his family. Son Ben drowned in 1959, at 14. Over the years, Peter was a Sunday school teacher, lay leader, and choir director in church. He was ordained in 1958, and pastored churches in Arnold, B.C.; Oliver, B.C.; Wels, Austria; and Abbotsford, B.C. For 10 years after the death of Agenetha, his wife of 59 years, he travelled, preached, and visited family. On Oct. 18, 1997, Peter married Margaret Hildebrand. His sons and daughters and their families are grateful for the example of the godly husband, father and grandfather he was, right to his old age. Peter is mourned by Margaret; children Peter (Nina), George (Edith), John (Florence), Helen (Victor Stobbe), Sam (Dora), Marie (Menno Wiebe), Ruth (Arnie Peters), Martha (Bert Loewen); grandchildren; great- and great-great-grandchildren.

Elizabeth Doerksen
Elizabeth Doerksen died Oct. 15, 2009. She was born Mar. 4, 1926 in Southern Russia to Bernard and Elizabeth Doerksen. The family came to Canada in 1930. Elizabeth lived briefly in Crowfoot, Alta., before moving to Coaldale, Alta., where she lived the rest of her life. She was saved at an early age, and through baptism, became a member of Coaldale MB Church. She attended Coaldale Bible School for 3 years. She spent most of her working years doing secretarial work, but also served as caregiver for her widowed mother and invalid sister for a time. She loved working in her garden; her flowers were her pride and joy. Elizabeth was active in church, singing in the choir and teaching Sunday school. The highlight of her week was singing with Chapel Singers at hospitals and institutions every Monday. In her last three years, affected by Alzheimer’s, Elizabeth left her home of 50 years to become a resident of Coaldale Health Centre. Predeceased by 1 sister, an infant brother, 1 niece; Elizabeth is mourned by sisters Margaret, Ann, Helen, Katherine, Esther, and brothers Ben, Henry, David, Arthur; many nieces and nephews.

Clara Klassen
Clara Klassen died Oct. 16, 2009 at 90. She was born Nov. 12, 1918 in Laird, Sask. to Peter P. and Margaretha Epp. She accepted the Lord as Saviour and remained faithful to him to the end. Clara attended the Bible department of the German English Academy in Rosthern, Sask., where she met  Henry (H.T.) Klassen. They married Oct. 14, 1939, and moved to Rabbit Lake, Sask., where they farmed and Henry began his ministry. Clara was a strong support to Henry during his years of teaching at the Rosthern Bible School, pastoring in Hague, Sask., at Sterling Ave. Mennonite Church, and hospital chaplaincy in Winnipeg. While in Saskatchewan, she especially enjoyed her role as recording technician for the 30-minute radio broadcast Henry hosted. Clara was a great seamstress, which benefitted her children and grandchildren. Clara and Henry retired to Abbotsford, B.C., in 1977 where they were involved in the Olivet Church as long as they had health and strength. Prayer groups and Ladies Aid were important to Clara in whatever church she attended. Predeceased by Henry in 2003, all 7 siblings, and 1 son-in-law; Clara is mourned by children Margaret (Frank) Martens, Elsie Klassen, Kathy Stauffer, John (Karen); 6 grandchildren, 5 step-grandchildren; 20 great-grandchildren.

David Pauls
David Pauls died Oct. 19, 2009. He was born Sept. 21, 1927 in Deutsch Wymischle, Poland to Hermann and Wilhelmina Pauls. After World War II, from age 16 to 21, David was forced to work in a Russian labour camp. During this difficult time, he accepted the Lord as Saviour. After his camp service, David recuperated in Germany for 1 year, then travelled to Canada to join his family who had settled in Coaldale, Alta. In 1951, he was baptized and joined Coaldale MB Church. On Sept. 2, 1951, he married Martha Ratzlaff. They shared all joys and sorrows. David’s main occupation was carpentry. In his retirement, he loved to travel. David was generous with his smiles, which greeted many a person as he ushered them into church services. In his last 10 years, as health issues became a big factor in his life, he found comfort and encouragement in music. David is mourned by Martha; children Rita (Ed) Stobbe, Rudi (Sylvia) Pauls, Haidee (Henry) Voorhorst, Nancy (Leighton) Meyer; 13 grandchildren; 6 great-grandchildren; 2 sisters.

Helen Bergmann
Helen Bergmann died Oct. 20, 2009. She was born Aug. 10, 1927 to Jacob and Lydia Reimer. Two traumatic events marked her early years: the accidental death of her 5-year-old brother, and the death of her mother when Helen was 13. Her father later remarried. In the late 1940s, the family relocated to Vineland, Ont., where Helen met Walter Bergmann. They were married Aug. 29, 1953, after Helen’s graduation as a nurse. Helen was a correspondent for the MB Herald, and the Mennonitische Rundschau for many years. Her children thank their parents for instilling in them a love for God’s Word, and for prayer. Family devotions were important. At the end of her life, bedridden after heart surgery and a stroke, Helen quoted Scripture and remembered hymns. Predeceased by 3 siblings, 1 sister-in-law; Helen is mourned by Walter; children Ruth (Bob) Froese, John (Maxine), Beth (Harold) Bartel, Barb (Carl) Heinrichs, Harold (Diane); 13 grandchildren; 2 siblings, 3 in-laws. The memorial service was Oct. 26 at Cornerstone Community Church, Virgil, Ont.

Susie Unrau
Susie Unrau died Oct. 31, 2009. She was born Feb. 14, 1919 in Gnadenheim, Russia to Peter and Anna Ratzlaff. The family immigrated to Canada in 1926. Susie was baptized in the Souris River at 14 as a public profession of her faith in Jesus Christ. She married Henry Unrau Apr. 4, 1943. They farmed in the Margaret and Ninga (Man.) area, moving to Boissevain, Man., in 1981. In Oct. 2007, she moved into Westview Lodge. Her greatest enjoyment was her family. Susie also enjoyed the outdoors, knitting, reading, puzzles, and watching sports. She was a longtime member of Boissevain MB Church. Predeceased by Henry, 4 siblings; Susie is mourned by children David (Helen), Peter (Ruth), Walter (Carol), Esther (Lorne) Meisner, John (Pat), Paul (Gloria), Clara (Rich) Reimer, Phillip, Mitch (Tom) Guenther, Cathy (Phil) Kroeker; 33 grandchildren; 30 great-grandchildren; 7 siblings.

Sarah Wiens
Sarah Wiens died Nov. 1, 2009 due to complications following a car accident. She was born Dec. 21, 1920 in Pleshanovo, Neu Samara, Russia to Henry and Sara Balzer. In 1925, she immigrated to Canada with her family, settling in the town of Colonsay, Sask. At 19, she moved to Yarrow, B.C. She worked as a domestic maid in Vancouver during the summer and attended Yarrow Bible School during the winter. At Bible school, she realized her need for Jesus, and asked him to enter her life. She was baptized July 12, 1942, and joined Yarrow MB Church. Sarah married Henry Wiens May 21, 1944. She took pride in operating a meticulously clean household, in keeping her family clothed, and in providing simple nutritious meals – usually on a shoe-string budget. She also supported her husband in his business ventures. Henry died in 1982. For several years, Sarah worked as a housekeeper, later helping out at her sons’ business. In 1997, she moved to Abbotsford, B.C., but maintained her membership and involvement in Yarrow MB Church. Sarah was a woman of deep faith who attended church faithfully, sang in the choir, enjoyed the activities and fellowship of the ladies’ group, and prayed daily for her family. Predeceased by Henry, 7 siblings; Sarah is mourned by children Jim (Olga), Linda, Rob (Laura), Alvin (Margie), Reg, Dorothy (Doug), Betty (Roger); 15 grandchildren; 2 great-grandchildren; 1 brother, 7 in-laws.
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