October 31, 1918 - April 28, 2021
It is with deep sadness that the family of Bessie Pawliuk announces her passing on April 28, 2021, at the incredible age of 102 years. Bessie was born during the Spanish Flu Pandemic of 1918, but it was a stroke in February 2021, that felled her mighty spirit. She is survived by her daughter Louise (Ron) Esch, sons Cameron (Sharon) Gee, and Dr. Joseph (Vaunie) Gee. Her daughter Cheryl predeceased her. Each of her grandchildren had a special place in her heart, and when the great grandchildren started arriving her heart overflowed. She delighted in spending time with them, remembered their birthdays, and Christmas meant cards being organized and her bingo and casino winnings being shared!
She was married to the late Alec Pawliuk and is also survived by his children, Peggy Allen, Don Pawliuk, Ken Pawliuk and Gayla Robert and their children.
Bessie lived independently at Heritage Heights for the past four years and had a strong and loving relationship with many friends who supported her to the end. She spent many hours at her beloved Legion, served for many years on the executive of the Ladies Auxiliary of the Royal Canadian Legion, and became a legend while volunteering at the many catering events well into her 90s.
The family wishes to thank so many people that made their mother’s life so meaningful and comfortable during her last days. Judy Orchison was absolutely indefatigable with her time and caring. Once visitors were allowed Lewis, Arlene, Norman and Terri went above and beyond. A huge thank-you goes to Dr. Frank and the nursing staff of St. Joseph’s Hospital, she received excellent care and was kept comfortable.
Bessie had a remarkable life and she leaves memories for us all to cherish and remember her by. Bessie loved a party and the family plan on having a celebration of her life once travel and gatherings are allowed. Cremation has taken place with the Autumn Rose Funeral Home in Vegreville handling all arrangements. If friends wish to make a donation in her name, please consider Covenant Foundation c/o St. Joseph's General Hospital - Palliative Care Unit in Vegreville.
“You can shed tears because they are gone, or you can smile because they lived.You can close your eyes and pray that they will come back, or you can open your eyes and see all that they left for you. Your heart can be empty because you can’t see them, or you can be full of the love you shared. You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday, or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday, You can remember only that they are gone, or you can cherish their memory and let it live on. You can cry and close your mind and feel empty, or you can do what they would want. Smile, Open your heart, Love…and go on.”
By Elizabeth Ammons