KOOP, Abraham Albert
August 3, 1923 – December 5, 2016
Abe was born on August 3, 1923 in Odessa, Russia. His parents were Mennonites who were living in Russia. His ancestors had moved from Germany through Poland and settled in southern Russia where the land was good for farming. He was born during the Revolution in Russia.
One of the first stories that we heard about Abe was when they came across to settle in Canada. Along the way, he broke his leg and had to stay in England with his grandpa until his leg healed. The rest of the family traveled to Canada. He was only three at the time and the year was 1926. Another story from his brother tells how in Jake’s cradle they hid some money that they brought over. We are so very thankful that our grandparents took the risk of leaving Russia to settle where we have so much freedom.
The family settled in a community called Blumenort, Saskatchewan, just south of Swift Current. I believe they obtained some land and his parents began a homestead. Dad took his education during this time in a small country school. He received a Grade 10 education and later took a year at Herbert Bible School which he enjoyed very much. He also spent one summer working on a farm near Pincher Creek, Alberta. There were some difficult years in Blumenort because of the bad droughts in the 1930’s. Dad talked a lot about how dry and windy it was. In 1945, Grandpa Koop (Abe’s father) took his family and moved to B.C. where they bought a farm near Chilliwack. This is where Abe met his future wife Siena Funk. They attended the same church and one time Dad phoned the Funk’s and asked to pick up Siena and Cornie for youth group. Mom had never talked to Dad but heard that one of the Koop boys had called. When the car arrived, Uncle John jumped out to let Siena and her brother in. There were four young men in the car, and Mom had no idea who was interested in her. She soon found out as Dad dated her and they were married on Dad’s birthday, August 3, 1947. Mom said she admired Dad’s keen interest in spiritual things. When they were first married they lived on a farm in Greendale where Dad was a hired hand and then moved to the farm on Bell Road which Grandpa Koop owned. In the year 1948, some of you might remember the flood. Mom was scared that they could be stranded there on the island. Esther was born while Mom and Dad lived on Bell Road. Then Mom and Dad moved to the little house on Brinks Road and the rest of the children were born during this time; (Shirley 1952, Victor 1954 and Gloria 1961). It was a small house and later Grandpa moved another little house in and attached it to the house. Later on Dad tried farming one more time – to the farm on Bell Road, but he could not get the down payment. We then moved to a house in town on Princess Ave. They moved a few more times, and finally when Dad retired, he bought a mobile home in the Selemas Trailer Park on Vedder Road, where he and Mom lived until her death. Dad worked at Fraser Vale for a total of 32 years and retired in 1988. He had shift work for most of those years, which was not easy for Dad, but he persevered in his job providing for the needs of the family. All of his children had the opportunity to work at Fraser Vale and get some work experience. It was a good training ground for the most part for us kids. Dad enjoyed reading and learning from books and from TV. He also enjoyed taking walks and keeping himself fit. Mom passed away on January 11, 1994 and Dad continued to live by himself for the next 15 years which is a real tribute to him. He moved in with Ken and Gloria in 2009 and then moved to Waverly in 2012. Lastly, he moved to the Bradley Center in September of 2014. He suffered a stroke on November 23, 2016 and passed away and entered into the presence of His Saviour Jesus on December 5, 2016. His daughter Shirley passed away August, 2012. He is survived by his daughter Esther (Syd) Young of Penticton, BC, his son Victor (Gail) Koop of Kamloops, BC, and his daughter Gloria (Ken) Mante of Sardis BC. He is also survived by 11 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. The Memorial Service will be held on January 7, 2017 at 11:00am at the Sardis Fellowship Baptist Church, 45187 Wells Road, Chilliwack, BC.