Winnifred Elsie Gravelle

Winnifred Elsie Gravelle

Winnifred Gravelle passed away at the Durand Manor in Golden B.C. on September 30, 2014 at the age of 92 years.

She was born in to Hilda and Harry Cutler in Empress Alberta on January 17, 1922, grew up on a farm at Innisfail during the Great Depression and qualified to be a teacher during the war in 1942.

Later, while teaching in Lumby, B.C., she met the love of her life, Yves (John) Gravelle and they were married in 1955. They lived in several communities around British Columbia but finally settled on Golden in 1965 and stayed for the rest of their lives.

Winnifred taught at Alexander Park Elementary School for 20 years and at one point seemed to know almost all of the kids in town. She often had students pedal their bicycle over to the house on a summer day for extra reading practice.

After retiring, Winnifred put in many volunteer hours at the United Church bargain basement and travelled the world with John. One of her most memorable experiences was riding on the back of a camel in Australia.

She was thrilled with the addition of each grandchild and even drove with John to the coast through a terrible snow storm to meet the first one.

John passed away in 2009 and she was grateful to spend her last years in good company at Abbeyfield House.

Winnifred was predeceased by her sister Betty and her brother Charlie. She is survived by her three daughters: Sharon Gravelle (Dave Thacker) of Calgary, Lorraine (Len) Pepper of Cranbrook and Marilyn Gravelle (André St-Denis) of Sudbury, Ontario and six grandchildren: Graeme Pepper, Allison Pepper, Michelle St-Denis, Stéphanie St-Denis, Emily Thacker and Allan Thacker.

A Funeral Service will be held at St. Andrew’s United Church on Thursday October 9 at 1:00 pm, with the Reverend Judith Hardcastle officiating. Interment will follow at Mountain View (Legion) Cemetery, Golden and there will be a reception at Abbeyfield House. Arrangements are in the care of Hindman Bowers Funeral Home, Golden.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to one of Winnifred’s favourite charities, the Golden Food Bank.

The family would like to thank the staff and Board of Directors at Abbeyfield House, especially Shirley Fudge, Stephanie Sollows and Lori Donaldson who made Winnifred feel so welcome there. Heartfelt thanks also to all the staff at Interior Health Home & Community Care, Golden & District Hospital and Durand Manor for the kind care they gave her in later years.

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