Nancy Hanna was born to Frank and Elizabeth Yeast on October 17, 1915 on the family ranch east of Fox Valley, Saskatchewan. She was the middle child, with an older brother Frank and a younger brother Perry. She spent her early years on the ranch where she developed a love of the country.
Nancy’s education began with home schooling on the ranch and later primary grades in Abbey. She attended Regina College and graduated in 1933. Nancy stayed on at Regina College and began her career as a secretary.
Nancy met Flight Officer Almond Vandre, an American pilot flying in the Royal Canadian Air Force. They married June 27, 1942. They were stationed at Vulcan, Alberta, a base in the Commonwealth Air Training Plan, where flight instructors were trained. Nancy’s husband was tragically killed while on a training flight only a few months later on September 21, 1942.
Nancy, undaunted, moved to Montreal and worked for Canadian Industries Limited CIL. This company at the time employed 33,000 people and was producing munitions for the Canadian war effort.
While in Montreal she met Mitch Hanna, a police officer in the Royal Canadian Mounties. In those years young Mounties were not allowed to date for some time after training. Covert dating occurred. They married in 1946.
Mitch’s career took them all over Canada with postings in both the east and west. In the early ’60s, Mitch retired early from the RCMP and began another career with External Affairs Canada. He was in charge of security for all the Canadian embassies and consulates in the African continent. Nancy and Mitch lived in London, England for three years and later were posted to Cairo, Egypt for another three years.
In 1977, Mitch retired and they moved to Medicine Hat. In retirement they enjoyed life. They played bridge, golfed and made the occasional trip to Calgary to attend the symphony. Nancy and Mitch travelled frequently to visit old friends in Ottawa and Montreal.
Nancy chose to live out her final years in her own home. She received kind loving care from her loyal caregivers Jackie and Jean Turaray.
Nancy was predeceased by her husband Mitch July 14, 2001. She was also predeceased by her parents and her two brothers Perry and Frank and sister-in-law Hazel.
She is survived by her sister-in-law Estella Yeast as well as by many nieces and nephews.
Nancy passed away peacefully on November 5, 2013 in Medicine Hat with family at her side.
The graveside funeral service was held in the Maple Creek Cemetery in Maple Creek, on Saturday, November 9, 2013 at 2 p.m. with Rev. Peter Boote officiating. Interment took place at the Maple Creek Cemetery. Pallbearers were the family. Honorary pallbearers were all those who shared in Nancy’s life.
Friends who wish to may remember Nancy with a gift to the Southwest Healthcare Trust c/o Cypress Credit Union.
To email an expression of sympathy you may visit http://www.gonebutnotforgotten.ca.
Binkley’s Funeral Service, Maple Creek and Leader, in charge of arrangements. 306-662-2292.