Obituary of Erma Penner
Erma Penner (nee Friesen) was welcomed to her eternal home in heaven on Thursday,a December 17, 2020, at the age of 77. She was born in Greenland, MB, on July 1, 1943 to Klaas & Sarah Friesen. She married Leo Penner on September 14, 1963 and they were blessed with 55 years together before Leo’s death in March of 2019. Their example of love and faithfulness will forever be a blessing and inspiration for their children and grandchildren.
Erma will be dearly missed by her four children – Shirley & Danny Reimer of Blumenort, MB, Melanie Frayle of Blumenort, MB, Kenley & Carla Penner of St. Joseph, MI, and LaDawn & Mark Venema of Hudsonville, MI, as well as her 12 grandchildren – Steffan & Kathryn Reimer, Alain & Emily Reimer, Marlaena & Matthew Guenther, Cole & Arianne Reimer, Jesse & Dana Frayle, Katrina Reimer, Robyn & Travis Funk, Erin Penner, Alexander Penner, Ashley Penner, Jackson Venema and Jager Venema, and her 10 great-grandchildren – Elijah Reimer, Bethany Reimer, Gavin Reimer, Coralie Reimer, Micah Reimer, Jevon Reimer, Olivia Reimer, Lennon Frayle, Addisyn Reimer, and Seda Guenther. She will also be missed by her siblings – Evelyn & Cornie Penner, Dennis & Agatha Friesen, Alice & Gary Tallman, Anne Friesen, Elaine & Stephen Cullen, Phyllis Friesen, as well as Leo’s siblings. She was pre-deceased by her husband Leo, parents Klaas & Sarah Friesen, brother Rey Friesen, son-in-law Marc Taylor, granddaughter Natalia Frayle, and great grandson Andre Reimer.
Erma grew up on the family farm in Greenland. She completed grade 8 at Montezuma School before switching to correspondence classes for grade 9 so that she could help at home due to some health issues her mother was experiencing. She really enjoyed attending school and was sorry to have to quit; however, being the oldest child, her help was needed. After her marriage to Leo in 1963, the couple purchased a small homestead in the country near Blumenort, before settling back on the dairy farm that Leo grew up on in Blumenort. Later Erma and Leo moved off of the dairy farm and designed and built their next home in the middle of a grain field on the outskirts of town. Erma embraced her role as a farmer’s wife, whether it be driving the grain truck full of grain back to the farm, or packing up the children and bringing meals to the field for the family to enjoy together with Leo. Erma always had a large garden and enjoyed canning and freezing her produce. When her children were no longer living at home, her garden size did not decrease; instead, she would share the extra vegetables with others. Erma enjoyed having guests over to visit and welcomed them with a friendly smile. When it was more the norm for family or friends to just “pop in” for coffee on Sunday, she would always be prepared with an extra dessert that she had prepared just in case someone came over. Erma always kept a neat and orderly home, with taste for décor. She enjoyed decorating her home for the different seasons. She also loved incorporating antiques into her décor, including some special items from her home growing up.
Erma had a heart for those around her. Whether it was cooking at Eagle Lake Bible Camp for many summers, being an active part in her Ladies’ Sewing Circle group, helping with the transition of refugee families to the community, going on a Mexico housebuild trip with family, or volunteering at an orphanage in Haiti when her daughter LaDawn was living there, Erma loved to serve the Lord in many ways.
Erma and Leo loved to travel together. Having children that lived a distance from Blumenort, this allowed for many trips to visit their children. They also enjoyed multiple trips to both Hawaii and Mexico in the winter months. They took a number of trips together with siblings and friends to places like Banff and Duluth area.
Erma enjoyed reading, and spent many years volunteering in the church library. Her favorite books were Amish novels. She got the trip of a lifetime when she went to visit Amish country in Ohio, complete with purchasing a quilt made by some Amish sisters right out of their home, having a buggy ride, and eating supper with an Amish family in their home.
Erma loved and cherished her family. She loved attending both her children’s and grandchildren’s sporting events. In fact, one year she and Leo, together with one other couple from the community, received awards for being the most faithful grandparent spectators. When her parents were aging and not doing well health-wise, she diligently helped them. If she was not able to stop in to see them for a day or two, she would always call to check in on them. She was always very concerned about how her family was doing. If she knew one of her children or grandchildren were not feeling well, she would make sure to follow up on how the individual was doing. She spent hours and hours in prayer for her family. When her husband Leo was dying from cancer, she did not give up praying for a miracle for his healing. She would also stand in front of the shelves in her home that held each of her children’s family photos and individual photos of each grandchild, and she would pray for each family member individually.
The family wishes to thank Erma’s relatives and friends for the love and support they have shown her throughout her many challenging years with health issues. Although her family will miss her dearly, it is so reassuring to know that Erma is in heaven, reunited with her husband, Leo, whom she missed so much. She is also free from all pain, discomfort, and worries that plagued her these last number of years.
The livestreamed private family service will be held on Monday, December 28, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. at Birchwood Funeral Chapel, Steinbach, MB.
To join the family please visit the following link shortly before the time of the service. The link will remain on our website for 90 days following the service for further viewing opportunities. www.oneroomstreaming.com/view/authorise.php?k=160884219592045.
Nos plus sincères sympathies à la famille et aux amis de Erma
Penner 1943 2020..
Décès pour la Ville: Steinbach, Province: Manitoba