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Germaine Maloney

 
 
 

Obituary

Germaine Irene Maloney passed away June 2, 2017, in the Good Samaritan Southgate Centre at the age of 97 years.

She was predeceased in 2002 by her husband of 63 years, Michael William Maloney, and is survived by sons, Ron (Berna), and Michael (Tracy); daughters, Janet (Ken) Richard, and Linda Onofrychuk; as well as numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great- great-grandchildren.

Gerrie, as she was known throughout her life, was born in Princeville, Quebec, in 1920, the daughter of Joseph and Amanda Durand. The family moved to the Edmonton area when she was only 3 or 4 years old. She experienced the hardships of the Great Depression as a teenager and witnessed the global conflagration of the Second World War as a newlywed.

Gerrie was old school when it came to family values and hard work. She grew up on a small family dairy farm on the outskirts of Edmonton, one of six children living in an unheated, three-room shack without electricity or water, who discovered life was tough early. When she wasn’t milking cows with her sisters or attending to the chickens on the family’s rented acreage, she attended Sacred Heart School- walking to classes in ill-fitting boots handed down by her brothers.

She was pulled out of school in the Seventh Grade by a traditional French Canadian father who believed that book learning was lost on girls who were better off at home honing the skills they would need to raise a family.

Despite being insecure at her lack of education, Gerrie blossomed into a dark-haired beauty who caught Mike’s eye at age 19. She moved from the family home into her marital home, never having experienced life on her own. She buried her sorrow at the death of her firstborn son hours after his birth, comforted by the rock solid Catholic faith that sustained her throughout her long life.

Her early training served her well for life as a homemaker on a tight budget. Gerrie stretched family finances by sewing clothes, making sheets and pillow cases out of old flower sacks and washing stacks of cloth diapers by hand, squeezing moisture from family laundry by hand with a wringer before hanging everything outside.

She canned vegetables from a backyard garden to cut food costs and shopped at thrift stores for the clothes she didn’t make. When the kids got older she went to work for several years in the basement of the General Hospital sewing sheets for minimum wage so the family could buy a car. Family finances improved and life wasn’t all hardship and work for Gerrie. She had a lively sense of humour and enjoyed playing cards, bowling, square dancing and socializing with family and close friends. But what she truly loved was fishing, whether sitting in a small boat waiting for a tug on the rod or staring into clear water through a hole in the ice watching for a jackfish or perch to take the bait.

With the kids grown up, she found time to do more needle and petit point and without formal training took up art, creating a visual family legacy with pastel landscapes and renderings of family homes and pets, accurate to the finest detail.

She had a sharp tongue when angry and a warm heart, which she wore unabashedly on her sleeve. She would not have felt disrespected at being depicted later in life as a “tough old bird.” Gerrie was among the last of a generation who didn’t expect anything more from life than what they put in and the world is a poorer place for its passing.

A special thanks to the staff of the Good Samaritan Southgate Centre for the kind and thoughtful care they provided to Gerrie in the difficult final months of her life.

In Loving Memory of
Germaine Maloney
(Maiden: Durand)
 
 
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 Print Funeral Details
Funeral Service:
Funeral Mass
Monday, June 12, 2017
2:00 PM
St. Albert Catholic Church
7 St. Vital Avenue
St. Albert, AB
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