Lydia Penner Giesbrecht was born January 29, 1931, the sixth in a family of twelve children. After being diagnosed with cancer at the end of April, she passed away Aug 10, 2020 at the age of 89.
Her memoirs reveal the love and respect she held for her parents and siblings. Joy was found in play with sisters and brothers and helping with day to day chores and responsibilities. As a young adult her livelihood consisted of housekeeping and child care for many people in Winnipeg, working on her sister Erna & Pete Loewen’s chicken farm, and working in a restaurant with her sisters. Mom accepted the Lord as her personal Savior on Oct 2, 1955 and greatly influenced many to follow her example.
In 1966 she chose to accept the marriage proposal of our widowed father and eagerly took on the care and nurturing of 4 children ranging from age 2 to 17. She honored Dad’s passions and complimented his reputation and goals in the community and in the church. She happily worshipped in the MacGregor EMC and served in her quiet way by having a heart of prayer and always being ready to provide and serve food above and beyond the needs of many.
Her love and dedication to our family deserves the highest praise and honour. She was always ready to listen and accept everyone... “Her children rise up and call her blessed.” (Proverbs 31:28a). Our mother was gifted as a warm, loving hostess, gracing her table with splendid food and desserts. Family visits and deepest conversations generally took place around her kitchen table. Mom’s participation during these times showed her keen interest and knowledge in a variety of topics - from family reminiscing, to current events, or offering wise council, plus many games of Scrabble. After all, we named her “Scrabble Queen”.
Mom loved anyone and everyone. If you came to her home she would feed you, whether you were hungry or not. She made you feel so special and so loved. She did not appreciate anyone speaking negatively of themselves and she made that known. She was a mentor, role model, and faith example like no other.
Her grandchildren and then her great-grandchildren were the gems of her life. She opened her heart to each one by listening, remembering details, fun with games, puzzles, and of course food!
Her sense of humour continued through till the end. At the hospital, when we cried with her, she said, “Don’t cry for me. Don’t cry for me, Argentina.” When speaking of end of life she raised both arms and said, “May the daybreak come soon.” Her wish was granted.
What a beautiful legacy she has left with all of us.
Mom was predeceased by her parents, Jacob and Sara Penner, her husband, George Giesbrecht (2016), siblings Erna Loewen, Jake Penner, Peter Penner, Nick Penner, Anne Dimitroff, Sara Dyck, Alice Johnston, and numerous in-laws.
Left to cherish her memory are: Sylvia & Robert Advent, son Eric; Sharon (Bill) Esau, and their family: Shannon Esau (Sadjad Hashmi): Amir, Adam, Sophia; Justin Esau; William Esau (Shala Brignall): Kylar, Asher; Matthew Esau (Jasmin Cartilage): Anthony. Harold (Mary Kehler) Giesbrecht children: Heather (Darryl) Enns: Mckenzie, Dylan, Quinlan, and Ryenne; Jaynee (Wes) Weiss: Ryder, Mack, Jones; Amanda (Jason) Plant: Cooper, Layla, Rowan, Jessa; Donavon (Ashley) Giesbrecht: Arlo, Noa, Emry; Earl (Mercy) Giesbrecht: Shantel, Kaden: Lydia; Lorissa: Novah. She is also survived by sisters Hilda (Ed) Burwood, Margie Penner, Elaine LaRoche, Lorraine (Ernie) Andres.
The family wishes to express sincere appreciation to Dr N Dow and the excellent medical staff at the Portage District General Hospital. Extended family and a multitude of friends have shown loving and prayerful support.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Lydia (Penner) Giesbrecht, please visit our floral store.
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