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Duncan, Connie (nee Smith)

Posted on July 19, 2017 by Maple Creek

DUNCAN – Connie Duncan  (nee Smith) August 8, 1921 – June 21, 2017.
With deep sadness the family of  Connie announce her passing.  Connie is survived by her husband Herbert, of 73 years.
Connie was born on the ranch in the Cypress Hills southeast of Maple Creek.  She was the oldest of five children born to Charlie and Marjorie Smith.  The family had various teachers that boarded & taught them over the years.  For grade 12 Connie boarded in Maple Creek to finish her schooling.  She attended Normal School in Moose Jaw then taught for 2 years, one year at Webster and one in the Golden Prairie area.
While teaching she met Herb and later they were married on October 4th, 1943 in Medicine Hat.
After living in Piapot Herb and Connie moved to Maple Creek where they initially rented and then moved to their house at 207 Marsh St where they lived there for over 60 years.
Four children were born to the family.  It was a busy life for Connie and times were tough in those days for everyone.  When the men were working out on construction during the summer, Connie would go out and cook for them. Jobs were scarce but people did what they could and managed with what they had.
Connie started teaching English to new Chinese Canadians that came to Maple Creek, which was one of several ways Connie supported the community.
Connie was the first employee of the Maple Creek Credit Union in 1960.  She completed several courses at Western College to acquaint herself with all aspects of the Credit Union.  She proudly worked for the Credit Union for 25 years, ending her career as the office manager.  She made many wonderful and long-lasting friendships.  As well as being a working mother she was very active in community life.
Connie was a well-respected and a loved member of the United Church all her life.  She was affiliated with Eastern Star, Job’s Daughters, Camp Shagabec committee and the Chamber of Commerce.
Connie and Herb enjoyed belonging to a square dancing club and she also enjoyed and supported Herb’s activities with the Maple Creek Old Tyme Fiddlers, Shriners and Mason’s.
Connie and Herb enjoyed travelling with their motorhome. They travelled to Ontario & the Maritimes, had a trip to Florida, Hawaii and Bermuda.  One year Connie and her sisters, Milta, Bernice, and niece Debbie took the motorhome on a trip to the Maritimes to visit the Smith relatives. They had a great adventure on that trip & lots of laughs.  A lot of good times were also held at the cabin at the park
In 2006 Connie and Herb moved into the condo in the Creekside Estates.  That was their first new home.  Connie & Herb lived at the condo for 11 years.  It was Connie’s foresight to prepare themselves for their advancing years so they could retain their independence as long as possible. When Connie broke her hip a few years back, it was having an elevator and their upright tub that allowed her to remain at home for most of her recovery.
During her life Connie enjoyed reading, crossword puzzles, keeping a diary and making cookies. She was interested in the history and stories of the prairies and she specially loved the Cypress Hills.
The family is still wearing wool socks that Connie knit during her lifetime.  She made a sweater of choice and an afghan for every member of the family.  Her knitting was always sitting beside her rocking chair until arthritis set in during later years.  A memory of everyone was always looking so forward to her ice cream bucket full of gingersnaps when she would come to visit.
The family was enlarged over the years with the addition of 11 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren who all adored their Grandma and looked so forward to her hugs and gingersnap cookies.  She made them all feel special.
Connie was the heart, strength and quiet authority of our family.  When you had a major decision or needed approval you went to Mom.  She didn’t need to raise her voice to get your attention or show her disapproval.  If she gave you “the look” you KNEW.  You always wanted Mom’s approval and didn’t want to disappoint her.  She was not one to complain about her life or circumstances.
Connie was diagnosed with Alzheimers in 2014 and Herb was able to care for her and keep her home until just six weeks before Connie’s passing. The availability of Home Care in Maple Creek was also instrumental in keeping her home for a much longer period which was what both Herb & Connie had wanted.  Connie believed life was what you made it…..and she made it.
She wanted to be remembered as a good mother, and that is without doubt how we remember her.
Connie was predeceased by her parents, Charles and Marjorie Smith and sister Bernice Lambert.  She will be remembered with love by her siblings, Marion Brown, Milta Tribble and Arnold Smith.
Connie is survived by her husband Herb, her children, Larry (Jackie) Duncan, Derryl (Dolores) Duncan, Neil (Peggy) Duncan, Lynanne (Mark) Bourque, including 11 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.
Those who wish may remember Connie with a donation to the Alzheimer Society of Canada or to the Maple Creek United Church.
The family wishes to extend their deepest thanks for the many expressions of kindness.  The family also wish to extend a special thanks to the Home Care Staff, Long Term Care Prairie Meadow Staff and United Church Ladies and Choir.
Funeral arrangements entrusted to Binkley’s Funeral Service. Condolences may be offered to the family at http://www.binkleysfuneralservice.com

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