Gerhard (George) Wilfred REIMER

March 26, 1914 – May 27, 2011

George was born on March 26, 1914, the seventh child of Abram J. and Maria (Froese) Reimer in the Mennonite village of Wiesenfeld which was founded in 1880 by his great-grandfather Jacob D. Reimer in what is now the Ukraine. George’s forebears willed him a rich spiritual, intellectual and material history.

The mayhem of the 1917 Russian Revolution engulfed idyllic Wiesenfeld only three years after George’s birth. In 1919, at age 5, George witnessed the murder by terrorists of his grandfather Froese and Uncle Franz. Everyone fled Wiesenfeld. The A. J. ­Reimer family sojourned in the village of Gnadenfeld in the Molotschna, where they survived the Great Famine. In 1924 the family emigrated to Canada – by train across Europe to Latvia. At Riga they embarked for England. From there they sailed across the Atlantic to Quebec City, then by train to Saskatchewan. Southeast of Humboldt they joined six other families in homesteading some rocky Saskatchewan fields during the Great Depression.

George’s schooling ended after six years. Hard physical work dominated his life. George began a relationship with the Savior in his teens, was baptized and remained a devout and faithful follower of Jesus throughout his long life. He modeled and lived his faith more than he spoke of it.

George began courting Anne in Saskatchewan. After both families moved to BC the two lovers were married in the Greendale MB Church on July 31, 1938. They celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary in the same church in July 2008. George and Anne lived and raised their children Reg, Jerry, and Joan in Greendale. They were active members of Greendale MB Church from 1943 to 2005 when they moved to Menno Terrace in Abbotsford.

George Reimer was an exemplary husband, father, grandfather, uncle, and in-law, as well as a fine craftsman and farmer and a huge contributor to church and community. Honesty, generosity and faithfulness characterized George. He blessed us by staying with us a long time. In his waning days on earth he often asked his children “What is there for me to do?” His Lord will have a much better answer than we could muster!

On May 16 George suffered an incident in Menno Pavilion which led to pneumonia. He was admitted to the Abbotsford hospital where, after 10 difficult days, he died peacefully on May 27.

George was predeceased by his wife Anne on December 30, 2008. He is survived by three children. Reg (LaDonna). Jerry (Annelisa), and Joan (Clarence) Neufeld, five grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren and two step great-grandchildren.

A Memorial Service will be held on Thursday, June 2, 2011 at 11:00 am from Greendale Mennonite Church, 6550 ­Sumas Prairie Rd., Chilliwack.

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