With grieving but loving hearts, the family of Nellie Trottier announces her passing on Saturday, April 28, 2018 at Didsbury Hospital. .
Born on October 8, 1926 in Foremost, Alberta, Petronella (Nellie) Marie was the fifth of Agnes and Peter Degenstein’s eleven children. Both her parents were born in the German colonies near Odessa, Russia and immigrated to Canada in 1902. Growing up in dryland southern Alberta during the Dirty Thirty/Depression years, Nellie’s family endured many hardships that instilled in them the qualities of independence, perseverance, resilience and gratitude. Nellie is survived by five siblings: Phyllis, Katherine, Odell, Florence and Mike.
At the age 16, Nellie moved to Carstairs to further her education while working and living with a former teacher, Edna Edmondson. Nellie helped with the housework and cared for the children in exchange for room and board and the chance to finish high school. In 1945 she married Emile William Trottier, youngest son of Marie and Charles Trottier who settled on a farm near Carstairs in 1905. Emile was an electrician by trade and the founder of Trottier Bros., a successful business that operated in Carstairs for nearly 40 years. He passed away in 1979.
Church and community activities were an integral part of Nellie’s life. She was President of the local Catholic Women’s League, a long-time member of the IODE, helped start Brownies and served as President of both Brownies and Girl Guides for many years. She was a long-time fundraiser for Carstairs Community Chest, a member of the Carstairs Library Board as well as the Carstairs Historical Society, Carstairs Recreation Board and also served as representative of the County of Mountain View Summer Games Legacy Committee.
From 1977 to 1989 she worked full-time for the Carstairs ECS as a teacher’s aide and in her spare time tutored many elementary students and babysat for friends and neighbours while always making time for the grandchildren who brought her immeasurable joy. In 1991 she started working part-time at the Carstairs Tourist Information Booth, a job she enjoyed so much she stayed for twenty-one years, retiring at the young age of 85.
Nellie was happiest when her home of 66 years was full of family and friends. She enjoyed time in her garden, bird watching, bridge, crosswords, reading and knitting while watching hockey or baseball games on TV. She was never too busy or too tired to play with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, to lend a hand to others or engage in a rousing discussion on politics.
Nellie leaves behind countless memories of love, laughter, compassion and strength for her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren who were her inspiration and her legacy. She was the proud and giving mother of eight children: David Wayne (deceased); Richard Wayne (Judy); Patricia Ann (Gwyn Morgan); Teresa Elaine (Mervin Anderson); Charles Douglas; Duane Stephen (Gwen); Kerry Francis (Donna); and Sharon Lynn. An amazing grandmother of eleven: Nicholas, Marc, Daniel, Jennifer, Erin, Jared, Cristin, Stephen Michael, Stephen Tyler, Alexander and Matthew and great-grandmother of thirteen: Connor, Hannah, Emmett, Breeana, Parker, Kingsten, Ayden, Chloe, Paisley, Hudson, Rune, Cale and Neva.
A celebration of Nellie’s life will be held at a future date. In lieu of flowers, donations in Nellie’s memory can be made to the Rosebud Health Foundation or Carstairs Public Library with great appreciation. Condolences and memories may be forwarded to Heartland Funeral Services Ltd. at www.heartlandfuneralservices.com. Cards of condolence may be mailed to Box 303, Carstairs, AB T0M 0N0. Heartland Funeral Services Ltd., Didsbury entrusted with arrangements. 403-335-4773