Coping with Grief
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With broken hearts, we announce the peaceful passing of our beloved Donna on November 16, 2023 at the age of 73 years, with her family by her side.
Donna Marie Bodnarchuk was born on August 8, 1950, the first child of Walter & Alyce (nee Edgar) at Carberry Hospital, a special birthday gift to her Grandma Olive Edgar who was celebrating her 49th birthday that day. They would share parties together, their last celebration being her Grandma's 100th birthday on August 8, 1999. As a child, Donna loved animals, playing house in the old ice house which her Dad converted into a playhouse for her,& helping with the daily farm chores-feeding the calves, driving the horses to the water trough -finding out as she got older that the horses would have gotten there without her. At age 4, she became a big sister to Douglas Edgar who was born on Oct.30, 1954, & she led him on many adventures & a few predicaments, once almost losing him in the spring mud but prided herself in the fact that even though his rubber boots were lost, she did save him! Life on the farm was good with Sunday drives to Rathwell to visit Gido & Baba or to Austin to spend time with Grandma & Grandpa Edgar. Lots of visits to Uncle Jock & Aunt Kaye Menzies or Aunt Mary & Uncle Allan McClelland's. On Sunday afternoons at Rathwell the highlight of the day was walking with Gido & the uncles & cousins to Gido's poolroom/barber shop where we each got a handful of penny candy & the men carried back cases of soft drinks for us to enjoy later. We thought we were pretty lucky to have a grandfather who owned a candy store!
School began at Melvin followed by high school at Austin. Special times were spent with best friend, Lorna Peck, a friendship that lasted her entire lifetime. The Pecks, Mcintyres, & Hays were all wonderful friends then & through the years to follow. In 1968 Donna attended Wheat City Business College where she received an Honors Secretarial Diploma. She taught shorthand & typing at the College upon graduation, followed by a position as receptionist for Dr. J.D. McQueen until the fall of 1974. At this time she moved to Neepawa following her marriage on Sept.14th to Terrance Wayne Smith, eldest son of Ken & Dora Smith of Edrans. In Sept. 1975 she began a career as sales associate at Neepawa Furniture Centre. On October 22, 1980 she & Terry became the proud parents of Tannis Nadene & for several years she was a full time Mom, which she said was the best career of all. When Tannis was older she returned to work ending her career of 38 years when the store closed in April 2013. Through the years she was involved with Nursery School Board, HMK Parent Council, Lionelles, Neepawa-Gladstone After 5 executive, Neepawa United Church Mission & Service & UCW unit 1 & 2. They enjoyed trips to Disney World, Las Vegas, B.C., the Maritimes, camping at Waterhen, Otter Lake & later at the farm where she grew up. Life just got better with the addition to her family of son-in-law Bobby-Joe Winslow who she said was the son she always wanted. Also, her pride & joy were the addition of grandsons, Kayden William & Carter Brody. Trips to Albert became the best holiday in the world as she could spend time with all of them & watch the boys grow up. Tannis was her best friend & confident & many hours were spent on the phone & texting when they couldn't be together discussing life & its loves & problems. She always hoped they knew how important they all were to her & how proud she was of their accomplishments. She always said family & friends were the best treasures on earth. Her extended family & in laws were loved very much too. Through all these activities it was sharing them with Terry that gave it all meaning. She always was so happy that she was brought up in a Christian home & thanked God everyday for the blessings in her life. Her favorite saying was--Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the number of moments that take our breath away.
Predeceased by parents Walter & Alyce Bodnarchuk, father-in-law Kenneth Smith, mother in law Dora Smith, brother-in-law Alfred Black, nephew Randy Black, grandparents Alexander & Kathryn Bodnarchuk, Robert & Olive Edgar & several aunts & uncles.
Donna is survived by her husband Terry, daughter Tannis (Bobby), Kayden & Carter; brother Douglas(Shannon) nephew Chad (Marie),great nephew & niece Daxton & Ryanna; niece Melanie Stevenson(Dale), great niece Madison; sister-& brothers in-law Donna Black(Jack), Dawn, Dwayne Riley & Bailey Gardy; Renee, Bryan, Katie: Kelvin(Eileen) Smith, Pamela, April, Trevor & families; Colin(Susanne) Kristen, Renee, Tyler & families, Ruth Smith, Rachel, Cody, Shawna, Ryan & families; Aunt Phyllis Bodnarchuk, and extended family and friends who were very special to her.
Things Donna wanted us to remember:
- To care for those less fortunate & not to judge why or how people's circumstances are as they are.
- Share what we have.
- Never let the sun go down on an argument.
- Take time for the sick & elderly.
- Tell your family you love them.
- Always thank God every day for His faithfulness to us in good times & in bad.
Grief reminds us that death is not a “good-bye”,
but the longest and hardest “see you later”
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