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George Botchett

 
 
 

Obituary

Family members of George Botchett, like so many of his friends, colleagues, and neighbours at Victoria Plaza, feel a deep and profound sadness at his passing, just two days after celebrating his 77th birthday at the U of A Hospital.

George possessed an unique ability to connect with people throughout his college years, his career as an educator and in retirement as he shared with others his passion for theatre, opera, the visual arts, fine food, and good Scotch!

A much-loved son, brother, husband and uncle, he was born in Pointe du Bois, Manitoba to Muriel and Jack Botchett and was proud to attend schools in the north end of the city, so rich with various cultural influences. Summer jobs on the CN Railway and a three-year teaching stint in Kelwood broadened his horizons and matured his sense of artistic purpose.

Success as a high school drama teacher led to several scholarships at the Banff School of Fine Arts. He married Enid Giesbrecht—his leading lady--on August 17, 1968, and both of them began long careers with Edmonton Public Schools. A DND opportunity from 1973-76 provided them with a wide canvas for travel throughout Europe, Scandinavia, and Russia and during which they made life-long friendships.

George’s considerable culinary talents were widely known and he played a significant role contributing to the “Taste of the Arts” fundraising cookbook. His work with the PSAA “Bids for Kids” and Jubilee Opera Guild auctions included organizing large groups of sous chefs and costumed servers at memorable dinners with Elizabethan, Medieval, and Dickensian themes.

Retirement provided George with time to pursue his talents with drawing, painting, sculpting, and mask-making amongst the artistic community and where he maintained a studio at Harcourt House. His volunteer work was acknowledged in 2010 with an award from the North Branch of the Alberta Society of Artists.

George’s sisters, Beryl and Merlene, with their husbands, Paul Magel and Ron Staatz, will forever hold their older brother dear to their hearts. Nieces and nephews and their partners, Kathy and Dale Whitaker, Leah Magel and David Staatz, Paul and Nancy Magel and Gilda and Shawn Frizzell will cherish him always. Grand nieces and nephews, Keaton, Adam, Matthew, Rosalee, and Ryan, will miss the genuine interest he had in every aspect of their lives. Remembering with joy and thanksgiving how much richness he brought to the Giesbrecht family are his wife Enid, mother-in-law Mildred, Gregory and Juanita and their children Chris, Sean and his wife, Jenn.

A great number of friends, too numerous to mention individually, will each find a way to keep in their hearts and memories the special moments they shared with George!

Memorial services are planned for the fall in Edmonton with details to be announced at a later date. Burial will be alongside his Mother, Father and Aunt Mary Cameron at St. John’s Cathedral in Winnipeg.

In lieu of flowers, please consider contributing to the Glenrose Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation, in honour of a place in which George resided for a time this winter and where, on the ground floor, there is a statue for which he modeled. The address is 10230 – 111 Avenue, Edmonton, AB, T5G 0B7.

In Loving Memory of
George Botchett
 
 
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