Mary Ann Pfeffer

Funeral Service

11:00 am
Friday, March 15, 2024
Our Lady of the Prairies Catholic Church
5202 59 Street
Daysland, Alberta, Canada
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Obituary of Mary Ann Pfeffer

In Memory of Mary Ann Pfeffer (April 21, 1935 - Mar 8, 2024)


       Mother, Grandmother, Great Grandmother, and all around Great human being.  Mary Ann was predeceased by her loving husband, Donnie (died - Feb. 18, 2021), her parents (Anthony and Frances Gau) and Nancy Jacknisky. She is survived by her 7 children, Audrey Anderson, Dennis (Mary) Pfeffer, Carol (Jim) Wojciechowski, Adele Pfeffer (Kevin), Joan Stone, Gloria (Eric) Klein, and Violet (Ken) LaFantaisie.  She also has been blessed with 15 grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren.  In addition she has had 4 special individuals in her life, Bob and Debra Scheelar and Val Tucker and Chester Jacknisky and their families.

         Mary Ann was born on April 21, and often reminded friends that it was on the same day as Queen Elizabeth II, who she loved very much.  Mary Ann was a remarkable, hard working woman.  Together, she and Dad did an amazing job at raising 7 children on the farm south of Strome, Alberta.  Once settled into their new home on the farm in the early 1960s, Donnie and Mary Ann, in 1966, hired a young man, Bob Scheelar, who quickly became an integral part of the family and has remained in their lives as a dear friend to this day.  Mary Ann started out as a city girl, until she married a farmer and became very involved in all aspects of farm life including milking cows, raising pigs, chickens and turkeys while keeping the home running smoothly. We recall the days termed 'chicken day'; when the chickens met their untimely end and Mom was very busy throughout the entire process from butchering to canning.  Mom worked tirelessly throughout the year as she lovingly preserved food for processing and then shared it with her family and every one who sat at her table.  When it came to preparing the beef and pork the processing was extensive (we recall the blood sausage production). This too, was later shared with us as adult children who were then raising our own families.   She drove the one-ton truck and hauled the grain at harvest time;  at the same time preparing meals for the harvest crew.   Mary Ann loved all the farm animals and all the creatures that would visit the yard or were raised by Dennis when he found them.  Well maybe not all of them.

        She spent many hours in her huge garden while keeping an eye on the kids at chore time.  This involved pulling the weeds, picking and shelling buckets of peas, and sometimes eating them behind her back.  As a result she harvested a multitude of vegetables that were to be stored in the cold cellar over the winter months.   All of the hrd work meant the cold room was always filled with canned veggies, fruit, and meat.

       Mary Ann believed in the concept of being green before anyone else knew what that meant, always recycling whatever could be reused for some different purpose and composting in the garden whatever could not be eaten. Our cousin, Delette, from Oregon recalled the time mom backed the car out of the garage one evening because of an approaching rain storm.  In the morning she just returned the car to the garage, all clean.

       She was always sewing, crocheting or knitting something to give as a gift or wear to an event.  In her belongings, a large Rubbermaid container full of dollies was recently discovered. Then there is the trunk containing quilts and blankets made from spare parts of old clothing she had kept over the years. The kids remember, and may still have, some of the cloths that Mom made for them for school, 1st Communion dresses, and Halloween costumes. These were often given away as Christmas gifts, birthdays or even  wedding presents. The Pfeffer kids recall the joy of getting off the bus after school; coming into the house to the smell of either freshly baked bread or donuts or those delicious cream puffs.  There was alway so much available for special occasions, which Mother always made a point of bringing everyone together for, even after the children had gone to start their own families.

     Mary Ann was a member of the local CWL for more than 65 years and was very involved in parish service work, preparing and serving meals for neighbours' funerals, weddings and church fundraisers.  She faithfully took her turn at cleaning the Strome Catholic church,  she led by example, making sure that we always attended the Sunday masses and feast day church services.  Her strong faith in God and the Blessed Virgin Mary kept her going, especially during the difficult times.  At those times, too, she would gather the family together to recite the Rosary.

     As active members of the Stromę Curling club for many years, she and Dad (Donnie) would curl and attended many bonspiels in different locations in the area. This is likely what held her interest in curling, she spent many hour in the past few years watching the games on TV from the comfort of her chair in her home at Providence.  Getting upset if the remote wasn't working and she could not find the Bonspiel time on TV. She was, fervently, watching the Montana’s Brier at the hospital during her last hours on earth.

        Mary Ann loved music and married a musician.  It was a fun time in the Pfeffer garage when the band would get together for practice.  Mary Ann would arrange the grain filled sacks for seating and making a space for dancing. She often accompanied Dad when his band would be playing somewhere out of townShe and Donnie enjoyed, very much, being able to shuffle the dance floor at numerous weddings and anniversary celebrations. Mom always liked it when she could dress up in her finest clothes. It was a nice change from the attire she wore when doing the chores on the farm. Once she retired and moved into Providence Place she was often seen in very nice attire.

      Mom liked to play bingo every week in the seniors centres and in the latter years in the cafeteria at Providence Place.  She took her turn at calling out the numbers and playing her cards at the same time.  She also enjoyed partaking in other activities provided by Providence over the years.

      Mary Ann and Donnie loved to travel all over Canada and the US. There were annual family trips to the mountains, BC, or various visits to relatives in Wisconsin and Minnesota.  Over the years mom and dad upgraded their 5th wheels to serve them on their extended stays at the Park Place trailer park in Apache Junction near Mesa, Arizona to spend time with the rest of the Alberta snowbirds.   Mom would assist Donnie in carrying his music equipment to other trailer parks around Phoenix.  There was the morning gig, the afternoon gig and the evening jam session throughout the weeks they were thereAudrey was very impressed when she would  spend holidays with them.  She and Mom would dance to the music while watching Donnie on stage.  Over the years they developed lifelong friendships with many of the park residents.  In the past twenty years they made several trips to BC to visit daughter Audrey who moved to Kelowna and surrogate son, Bob Scheelar, who, as an RCMP Officer, lived in various cities in BC.

      Mary Ann was raised as an only child by loving parents.   She always new that she was adopted, but considered herself blessed when in 2014, she discovered that her birth mother and two siblings were alive and, after connecting with her,  welcomed her and her family into their lives and began building relations with them.  She was able to spend time with her birth mother (Nancy Jacknisky) and half sister (Val Tucker - BC) and brother (Chester Jacknisky, Quebec). 

      It goes without saying that mom will be greatly missed.  She was often heard to say she wanted to “Just Keep the Peace”.  Well, now she can watch over us all and maintain the peace from a much better vantage point.

Thank you, Mom.  We love you, Mom.


Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday, March 15th at 11:00 a.m. at the Our Lady of the Prairies Roman Catholic Church in Daysland. Memorial donations are gratefully accepted to the Daysland Hospital Foundation, Canadian Cancer Society, or Alberta Heart and Stroke Fund.


Mom, Our light, Our Guide

Our mother our love our inspiration.

You made us whole, so much admiration.


You picked us up when we fell down.

You put a smile on our faces to take away the frown.


You were always patient and strong.

When teaching us right from wrong.


On your journey you traveled so many miles.

Enlightening so many lives with your beautiful smiles.


No words can describe the mark you leave on our hearts.

Your love always healed our broken parts.


Our guardian angel to watch over us all.

We'll hear your whispers to remind us to always stand tall.


We now have two stars shining so bright.

In our darkest times you are our guiding light.


When we feel lost you will brighten the way.

Knowing our worries will all fade away.


Your two Moms' have called you they opened the door.

So spread your wings you three will soar.


You are going home to be with your true love.

Watching over your children from above.


You were there for all of our first breaths, we were all here for your last.

Rest in Peace our sweet mother your time here has passed.




By Joan 

March 8, 2024

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