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Born: Oct 25, 1932

Date of Passing: Jan 07, 2023

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October 25, 1932 – January 7, 2023

Her body was tired…it served her well…strong and healthy for 90 years.
We were lucky to be part of her earthy journey…but now is the time to be strong…
for she continues onto the start side without us.
We should not worry though…she will never be too far…
for we will carry precious memories of her forever in our hearts.
It would be selfish of us to wish her back…instead we take comforting
knowing she is reuniting with her love…for he patiently waited 29 years.
She lived a spirited life…many travels and adventure…many family members and good friends.
But her body grew tired…so we let her go…
and she left us with not a single "I love you" left unsaid.

Written by granddaughter, Ashley Kirkness

It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing our beloved mother, granny, great-granny, great-great-granny, sister, aunt, and friend Kitty Mina Kirkness on January 7, 2023, with her family by her side at Thompson General Hospital at the age of 90 years.
Mina was born in Split Lake on October 25, 1932, to Sophie and Edwin Spence. In 1951 she married Gilbert Kirkness from there they lived along the railway line to raise their family and permanently settled in the Fox Lake area in the 1960's.
Her beautiful life will forever be cherished in the lives of her children: Greta, Clara, Lloyd (Charlotte), Doreen, Barb (Sam), Norman, David, Shirley (David), Howard (Cindy), Lorraine (Ron), Susan (Raymond - Stick), Leonard, Jocelyn (Morris). Her 36 grandchildren, 59 great-grandchildren and four great-great-grandchildren. Sister: Nora-Jean Wavey. Numerous nieces and nephews. Special Friends: Lorna Spence, Rebecca Beardy, Eileen Lavallee, Lillian Spence, Margaret Finucane, Emmeline Spence, Kerri-Mae Murray, Linda Spence, Delanie Allan, Sarah Martin, Galena Massan, Maria Mayham, Jessie Ouskan and Nora Wavey.
Mina was predeceased by her loving husband, Gilbert. Parents: Edwin and Sophie Spence. Sister: Maryanne. Brothers: David and Thomas Spence. Nephews: Thomas Kirkness, JP and Thomas Jr. Granddaughter Joanne. Son-in-law Jim.
Mina was a Residential School survivor who attended Elkhorn and Prince Albert. She was a Matriarch of 112 family members.
She loved the company of all her grandchildren, watching the little ones play with her little trinkets at her house. Sharing stories with tons of laughter with banter and especially going for car rides with the older ones. She enjoyed attending community functions such as Chase the Ace, Legion meat draws, garage sales, penny sales, slotting at the Gaming Centre, Bingo and other events that the community held. She loved doing her daily beadwork and looked forward to attending beading group twice a week with her great-grand-daughter, Jade. She also had the travel bug itch, her last trip was from the Bayline all the way to New York City her dream trip, this past October. Other travels include Vancouver, Prince George, Hawaii, Nashville, Graceland, Las Vegas, Grand Canyon, Edmonton, Calgary, Banff, Lake Louise, Jasper, Toronto, Niagara Falls, Tyndengia, Mystic Lake, Ottawa, Fargo, Mount Rushmore, and as far to Mexico to attend her granddaughter, Erin's wedding.
Service was held at the Gillam Recreation Centre on Saturday, January 14, 2023. Pallbearers: Michael Kirkness, Jason Neepin, Richard Wavey, Dale Kirkness, Danny Lavallee, Logan Anderson, Layne Anderson, Ian Beardy, Scott Tye, Raymond Anderson, Roger Mayham, Tom Nepitabo (Godson), Morris Beardy.
Honorary Pallbearers: Lloyd, Norman, David, Howard and Leonard Kirkness, David Lavallee, Sam Wavey, Derek Kirkness, Matthew Lavallee, Sheldon Greene, Jason Binkley, Stephen Kirkness, Adam Neepin, Keith Neepin, Deyon Oliver, Axel Champagne, Blake Shingoose, Marvin Peters, Felix Spence (Chipewyan) John Flett, Larry Flett, Adam Flett, Gordon Spence, Roddy Spence. All grandchildren and extended family.
On behalf of the family, we would like to thank the Fox Lake Caring Committee, Chief Morris Beardy, Split Lake Gospel singers, Rita West, Jessie Lavallee, Val Massan, Mary Nepitabo, Dr. Tassi and nurse Leanne Regehr from the Thompson General Hospital. Gillam Hospital for all the compassionate care she received throughout the years, especially to Dr. Ben and nurse, Mandy Hedman, Manitoba Hydro, Town of Gillam, Sodexo, Boardman Funeral. Nieces: Betsy, Helen, Gladys, Hilda, and Peggy Mayham and Darlene Bittern. And to all who travelled miles to come say farewell and see you later to Mom, Roderick and Family, Wilfred, Louie, Elaine Mayham, Rita Spence, Tyrone Keeper, cousins from TCN Mina Osborne, Leon and Veronica Kirkness, Stanley Boy, Josephine, Virginia, Ken, Wayne, the Flett's and Mom's dear Friend Mary Dick's two daughters who came in their Mom's place Fanny and Maria. On her travels she never forgot to purchase T-shirts for Audrey's little girls Camielle, Callie and Cassidy who were also very special to her. So many to mention but we were so touched and honoured to all who showed up for Mom. And lastly special mention to her three children: Josh, Susan and Norman who have been taking care of her daily needs for the past several years. Sorry if anyone was missed.

"In tears we saw you sinking, we watched you day by day, our hearts were broken,

you fought so hard to stay; But when we saw you sleeping so peaceful, free from pain,
we could not wish you to come back to suffer that again."

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Jan 28, 2023

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