Olive Louise Fabris (nee Dumore)
Passed on October 30, 2021
January 24th 1931 – October 30th 2021 Our family sadly announces the passing of Louise Fabris, on Saturday, October 30th, 2021 at 90 years of age. A life well lived by a gentle soul, who blessed our lives every day and in every way she found possible.
Louise is lovingly remembered by her daughters Donna and Gayle and grandchildren Randy, Matthew and Gary. She also leaves behind great-grandchildren Darian, Brendon, Caitlyn, Alyssa and Joey and her sister Doris. She was preceded in death by her husband Peter in 2018, her daughter Marilyn in 1999, parents Anne and Scott, siblings Victor, Roy, Kay and Jean.
Louise was born on January 24th, 1931 on a farm in Foam Lake, Saskatchewan. Her parents had a tough time making a go of life during the drought and depression years. With hope of better opportunities, they moved to Winnipeg in the mid 30’s and soon after, settled on an acreage in Teulon, MB, as part of a government relief program for struggling families. After five years, her father unable to start making payment, relocated the family to another homestead in Gunton, MB.
They were poor and times were tough but Louise always said she would never trade her childhood for any other. She often reminisced about where all the wild berries grew and how blue the sky was then. She recalled how her mother gardened, canned and preserved every fruit and vegetable, tirelessly cooked and cleaned, milked the cows and fed the chickens and hand sewed and knit all their clothing. They made the best of what they had.
It was during these formative years when blossomed Louise’s love of all the wonders of nature, a lifelong passion for recipe books, baking and cooking, gardening, reading, music and a special affection for all God’s creatures.
Determined to complete her education, at age 14, Louise boarded with a family in Winnipeg. She graduated from Kelvin High School in 1949. During the summers, she cleaned cabins at Lake Brereton MB. With the money she earned there and the bit she earned babysitting, she returned home as she could, with those few dollars in hand, to help her family.
Following high school, Louise secured employment with Great West Life. A year later, in 1950, her interest in teaching led her to attend a teacher’s short course at Normal School and on to accepting a position in a one room school house in Broad Valley, MB.
During the summer, before relocating to Broad Valley, Louise returned home to Gunton to spend time with family. There was a need for coal oil. No one wanted to walk to town to gather the oil. She volunteered. During her journey, with the coal oil can swinging in hand, a handsome young man named Peter, stopped in his red truck and asked her where she was going and if she needed a ride. She accepted and during the course of conversation, he offered to drive her to Broad Valley later that summer. They would continue to correspond and so was the beginning of a long, long life together.
Impressed by her capabilities, the school superintendent encouraged Louise to sign on for a second year. She would have liked to take the necessary courses to continue teaching, but it would have meant borrowing money to pay for that and of that, she was not so sure and decided against. After one year of teaching, she commenced employment in Winnipeg with the Income Tax Dept. in 1951.
In June of 1952, Louise and Peter were married, made their home and raised their family in Winnipeg. They went on to share 65 years of life together. They gave us a home filled with love and provided us with all the opportunities to pursue our goals and interests. Amidst the many good times, they gracefully weathered life’s storms, the most heartbreaking, the passing of their dear daughter Marilyn. Together, through all the joys and sorrows of life, they taught us gratitude and acceptance.
Marriage was cause for Louise to leave her job with the Income Tax Dept, since married women were not permitted to work for the government in those days. She found employment as a secretary in a law firm. Soon after, Louise and Peter’s first daughter, Marilyn, arrived in 1953. Balancing motherhood and full time employment was often challenging, however, in order to help make ends meet, Louise would continue to work in law offices, collection agencies and as an operator at the St. Boniface Hospital over the next many years. By the early sixties, the arrival of daughters Donna and Gayle completed the family.
In 1970, Louise secured employment as Administrative Secretary to the Dean in the former Faculty of Administrative Studies, University of Manitoba. Over the next twenty plus years, travelling to and fro by bus every day, she worked hard at serving and meeting the demands of her job. She thoroughly enjoyed this work and often spoke about her experiences there and of all of the wonderful colleagues and students she was fortunate to work with and meet. She was fully retired in 1993.
Although she worked full time for many years, Louise’s greatest passion in life was her family. She always had time for us. She was there for us through the good and not so good. She gave us all her love and taught us valuable life lessons. She was a gentle soul with the sweetest temperament. There was not anything that she would not do for us. She truly was the most beautiful mother anyone could hope for and we are blessed and grateful to call her our own and be left with many wonderful memories.
Two of Louise’s favourite things to do were cooking and gardening. She excelled at both. She made the best Saskatoon pies and our favourite raspberry jam filled oatmeal cookies. Inspired by her Ukrainian heritage, she gave us the most delicious cabbage rolls and borscht. She enjoyed browsing her massive cook book library, trying new recipes and delighting us with everything she made. In the garden, she was in her glory. Digging, planting, watering, weeding, nurturing and harvesting. Her soul inspired amongst the flowers and vegetables, buzzing bees, singing birds, gentle breezes, warm sunshine and clouds flying by. She spoke of these joys often. A country girl at heart, living in the moments of nature’s beauty and all its offerings.
Louise believed in helping anyone she could. She derived great joy in doing so and more often than not, she did without herself so others could have. She said we are on earth for a short time, so be kind to others, do your best every day and be grateful for all you have.
With her delightful sense of humor, beautiful smile and optimistic outlook on life, she turned gray days to sunshine.
Life is full of mountains and valleys, Louise often said and reminded us not to worry about the valleys, assuring us as written in one of her favorite poems, that God’s in his heaven and all’s right with the world. Everything has a way of working itself out she said. We share the poem, Pippa’s Song, by Robert Browning:
The year’s at the spring, And day’s at the morn; Morning’s at seven; The hill-side’s dew-pearl’d; The lark’s on the wing; The snail’s on the thorn; God’s in his heaven, All’s right with the world!
In accordance with Louise’s wishes, cremation has taken place. A church service and internment is planned for early summer 2022 at the Victoria Church and Cemetery, Balmoral, MB. An announcement will be made closer to the chosen time and date.
Louise held a special affection for animals, especially those in need and throughout life, she and Peter adopted many a furry friend and generously contributed to various animal shelters and organizations. The family would be honored by any donations made in Louise’s memory to an animal rescue shelter of choice.
There are not enough words to express just how deeply our dear mother will be missed. We take comfort in knowing she is at peace and has gone home to dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
Rest peacefully Mom. God bless you and be with you until we meet again. Your loving daughters, Donna and Gayle.
Louise was a pleasant, kind and gentle woman. I worked with her in the Faculty of Management through the 1980s. The Faculty was going through major changes at that time and it was a stressful job, but Louise was quite capable. What a wonderful obituary her daughters wrote! She will be missed.
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