It is with great sadness that we announce the sudden loss of our beloved father, husband, grandfather, great grandfather, and friend. Dad passed away peacefully at the age of 87 in the Royal Alexandra Hospital on March 22, 2011. His memory will be cherished by his loving wife of nearly 66 years, Wally (nee Kulak); two sons, Terry (Sharon), Gordon (Wendy), and two daughters, Kathy Springer (Rocky), Karen Menzies (Carey). He will be much missed by his grandchildren, Alicia (nee Wendel) Hofmann (Terry), Todd Wendel, Breanne Wendel, Tegan (nee Wendel) Colban (Kyle), Samantha Menzies, Matthew Menzies, Abby Menzies, Katryna Springer, Kyle Springer, and great grandchild Madeline Hofmann. He was predeceased by his father Joseph and mother Margaret (nee Ulmer); his brothers George and Arthur; his sisters Mary Fuhr, Lydia Wendel, and Emma Dombrosky, and his grandson, Shane Wendel.
Albert grew up in the Blueberry area, just north of Beach Corner, where he worked on the farm with his father and brothers. He took one year from his schooling to attend German School, as it was known, to receive Catechism training prior to confirmation at St. John’s Lutheran Church on old Highway 16. He left school at the end of grade 9 with honors in all subjects and worked on the farm, an occupation he maintained until he sold his Shorthorns and Herefords eight years ago.
He voluntarily enlisted in the Canadian Army on his 21st birthday and wore his Volunteer Medal on his Sunday suit throughout his life. After completing basic training, he volunteered for the First Canadian Parachute Battalion and was accepted. Candidates were selected not only for physical condition but also for intelligence for the members of the First Can Para were Canada’s elite soldiers known not only for their physical prowess and toughness but also for their ability to think on the ground and to make decisions in combat. His “wings” remain proudly on display; while many wanted in, fewer than 2% qualified.
His passion for life was always farming although he was a self-taught carpenter, mechanic, butcher, neighborhood livestock “veterinarian,” and later a closet welder. He and mom lived on the same farm site for 64 years and were active members of St. Matthew Lutheran Church.
A Visitation is scheduled for Sunday, March 27, from 7:00 until 9:00 pm at Connelly-McKinley Funeral Home, 10011-114 Street, Edmonton.
Funeral services will be held at St. Matthew Evangelical Lutheran Church, 5021-52 Avenue, Stony Plain, on Monday, March 28, 2011 at 2:00 pm with the Reverend Rod Buck officiating. Interment to follow at St. Matthew Lutheran Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the St. Matthew Lutheran Church Building Fund.
A heartfelt thank you to the Parkland Ambulance Authority and the nurses and doctors of the Stony Plain and Royal Alexandra Hospitals.