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MARTHA ENNS  Obituary pic


Born: Aug 24, 1930

Date of Passing: May 18, 2015

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MARTHA ENNS Martha Enns died unexpectedly on May 18, 2015 at the age of 84 years. She was predeceased by her brothers, John and Rudy Friesen. She will be deeply missed by her husband John, sister Irmgard, children Martin (Ingrid), Charlotte (Greg), Erich (Joanie), and Anne-Marie (Henry), as well as her 11 grandchildren, six great-grandchildren, and many other family members and friends. Martha Enns (nee Friesen) was born in Winnipeg on August 24, 1930, the youngest of four children born to Jacob and Maria Friesen. Although Martha's early days on Redwood Avenue held many fond memories for her, it was a challenging time for her father who was often under - or unemployed due to the Depression and not having English as his first language. For this reason in early 1939, the Friesen family decided to take their chances by moving to the booming economy offered by Germany. The family's fortunes changed for the positive almost immediately. For a few months, they were content and convinced that they had made the right decision. The war broke out in September 1939 and life changed for the Friesen family. Martha's childhood was not an easy one in Germany. Young children were moved away from bombing areas, so she was frequently separated from her parents and siblings. She recalled being herded into bomb shelters and spending many anxious days and nights there. At the end of the war, Martha, Irmgard and her mother were shipped to a refugee camp in Denmark. After a number of years in Denmark and northern Germany, the family managed to immigrate back to Canada in 1950. In Canada, Martha upgraded her education to become a Registered Nurse. She was employed at the former Winnipeg General Hospital. She counted some of those classmates as close friends for her entire life. Her nursing career also began her dedication to helping and serving others. In the mid 1950s, she met her future husband John and it became a lifelong union of 58 years. They were married in 1957 by Aelt. Enns in First Mennonite Church. In the following year, the first of her four children was born. Martin was followed by Charlotte, Erich, and Anne-Marie. Martha gave up her nursing career and became a full-time stay at home mother. Martha was extremely devoted to her growing family. She was a generous and kind mother, mother-in-law, Oma and "Oma Oma". Over the years, Martha enjoyed many experiences, including the acquisition of their treasured cottage at Whiteshell Lake and trips abroad to Europe and the USA. Martha was very supportive of John's many projects, such as the Winnipeg Mennonite Theatre and Prairie Performances. In particular, her competence in both English and German always ensured impressive communications in both languages. Martha was always a gracious host, whether you were dropping by for a cup of coffee or invited for one of her delicious dinners. Gradually, as her children married and left the home, Martha's activities turned to volunteering, with the Westgate Thrift Store, First Mennonite Church, and Bethania Personal Care Home. In later years, she was a tireless volunteer for the German singing group at Bethania, which she led until her passing. Martha, despite her small form, was strong in mind and spirit, and she showed her steadfast faith through her actions and kindness to others. In 2014, John and Martha sold their house and moved into Concordia Village, where Martha's generous spirit was enjoyed by those residents as well. After a recent difficult trip to Germany, she appeared rather frail but perfectly lucid, so it remains a complete mystery to the family why she ventured into the cold, rainy morning of May 17 where she eventually collapsed under a fir tree at Bolton Park. The entire Enns family has been shocked by this totally unexpected and sudden death. The family would like to thank the Winnipeg Police Service for their immediate response and efforts to find Martha when she was missing. Funeral service will be held on Saturday, May 23 at 11:00 a.m. at First Mennonite Church, 922 Notre Dame Avenue. If people wish to honour Martha's memory donations can be made to Bethania Mennonite Personal Care Home, 1045 Concordia Ave., Winnipeg, MB R2K 3S7. Friends Funeral Service, 204-339-5555

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on May 21, 2015

Condolences & Memories (21 entries)

  • Our deepest sympathy at the loss of your dear wife and mother. Martha, John and family were next door neighbors of ours some 51 years ago. Our children played together and Martha and I developed a wonderful friendship during that time. They moved to Wolseley and we moved to Sandee Bay as our families grew, and time passed on. We still cherish the memories of that very special period of our lives. Martha will forever be missed. Sincerely, Beverley and Robert Goodwin, Vancouver, B.C. - Posted by: Beverley goodwin (Next door neighbour) on: Jun 02, 2015

  • If Art is what man wants to be instead of what he is, then Martha, as one of the Enns Clan, ennobled the human condition. - Posted by: Jack Thiessen (friend since 1961) on: May 31, 2015

  • Our heartfelt condolences to John, Anne-Marie and Henry and the entire Enns family. May the Lord comfort you. - Posted by: Karl & Caroline Brandt (church members) on: May 26, 2015

  • Our sympathies and hearts go out to John, and the entire Enns family. We always appreciated the kind, sweet, caring person that Martha was. Her warm smile and caring words will be treasured, never forgotten. - Posted by: Maria and Ernie Fink (Former neighbours) on: May 25, 2015

  • Sending deepest sympathy to John and all the family at Martha's passing. I remember and am so grateful for her dedication to the German singing at Bethania. My mother, Tina Enns, was one of those who benefited from Martha's efforts, for singing was one of the last skills to leave my Mom, and it brought her joy. I also remember Martha's unfailing kindness to me, (as the pesky little sister of her friend Kay Baderl). She will be greatly missed. Sadly, Hanni Epp (St. Cloud, MN) - Posted by: Hanni Epp (Friend) on: May 23, 2015

  • We very much enjoyed meeting you and Martha many years ago and deeply regret your loss. John, may God comfort you and your family in your bereavement. - Posted by: tom and nydia peterson (friends) on: May 23, 2015

  • Our condolences to John and his family on Martha's passing. I have many fond memories of Martha and seeing her at Bethania Home while volunteering. She was a very kind and sincere person. My heartfelt sympathy, Helen Voss and Family - Posted by: Helen Voss and family (Friend) on: May 23, 2015

  • My deepest sympathies to you and your family John. My thoughts and prayers are with you. - Posted by: Bev Hodgson (Ymca) on: May 23, 2015

  • Our deepest sympathies to the Enns family. Martha and John were our wonderful neighbours for 18 years. Martha was a marvellous and kind lady. Martha will be in our thoughts and prayers. - Posted by: Greg Flom (Neighbour) on: May 22, 2015

  • My condolences on the death of a gentle lady. We did not meet often, but when we did Martha (and John as well) showed special concern for Dolores my wife, due to her journey with Parkinson's Disease. - Posted by: Bill Block (Casual friends, also through fellow church member, daughter Charlotte.) on: May 22, 2015

  • The only comfort I can think of is that Martha is home in heaven where I will see her again. - Posted by: Traute Klein (Friend) on: May 22, 2015

  • Martin and Ingrid, Passing our sincere condolences and prayers to you and your families at this most difficult time. May God's grace comfort you in your grief. - Posted by: Karl Loewen ( Pearland TX ) (Westgate Alumni) on: May 22, 2015

  • Our deepest sympathies, John and family. This is a sad and tragic shock. Martha was a lovely and gracious lady, and she will be missed by the large community she was part of. May God's constant presence comfort you. - Posted by: Henriette and Rudy Schellenberg (Friends) on: May 22, 2015

  • Our deepest sympathies to the Enns family. We have been saddened to hear of Martha's passing and have fond memories of a kind, friendly and gentle soul who always had time for people, young and old. I recall her keen interest in the students at Westgate and her encouragement of all our musical endeavours. Our Aunt lived down the street from the Enns family and Martha often looked in on her. On one occasion when our Aunt was ill she came and spent the night with her, always a faithful caregiver. Truly a gracious neighbour and church friend. In your sadness may you find comfort in the wonderful stories you will hear of a great woman. May you sense deeply God's nearness as you celebrate her life on Saturday and as you grieve. - Posted by: Ingrid Loepp Thiessen and Anita Loepp (Fellow Westgate student and formerly from First Mennonite. ) on: May 21, 2015

  • I am so sorry to hear of Martha's sudden passing. Martha will be joining Peter (Dad), 1993 Nettie (Mum) and Marcia (Sister) whom we have lost just recently. John and family please take care, knowing Martha is in a wonderful place. Marlene, Chris, and Peter - Posted by: Marlene Hendriks-Albrecht (Cousin) on: May 21, 2015

  • Our families have been friends for years. We have enjoyed Martha's and John's friendship throughout the years. My heart goes out to your family on your loss. I have let distant family know of your loss also. When I was younger Martha always reminded me of Grace Kelly. She was a lady that never will be forgotten. - Posted by: Wendy Sutherland Kowal (Family friends) on: May 21, 2015

  • Charlotte, I wanted to say my condolence to you and your family loss of your mother/grandmother. its hard to lose a love ones. Tara - Posted by: Tara Caithness (former student of Charlotte at deaf school) on: May 21, 2015

  • Our deepest condolences and prayers to John and his family. - Posted by: Heather & Guenter Schaub (Part of the "early morning buddies" with John at the YMCA YWCA ) on: May 21, 2015

  • Feeling your sorrow at this difficult time. One of my memories of your Mom was her giving me in detail a chicken recipe that Paul had enjoyed, and of course the wonderful afternoon we spent at your cottage, your parents always could put anyone at ease, and your Mom was so easy to visit with. So sad for your loss. - Posted by: Christine Peters, Paul, Dexter, Hedi, Melodi, and Kristi (Sister in Law) on: May 21, 2015

  • My condolences on Martha's passing. I always appreciated her kind personality, and will never forget the role the she played as my wife in the Winnipeg Mennonite Theatre's play Die Brandstifter. - Posted by: Fred Jansen, Steinbach (Friend) on: May 21, 2015

  • Our condolences on Martha's passing. We will always appreciate her warm kind visits (with John) to my father when he was in the hospital and at Bethania. We've enjoyed Martha's friendship and visits over the years from their home on Wolsley Ave to the cabin at Big Whiteshell. If memory serves me Martha was my first sunday school teacher. We will miss you, rest in peace! - Posted by: Harry Toews Jr, Margerate Toews, Janelle & Lauren (Friends) on: May 21, 2015

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