Vivian Merice Nelson was born on March 13, 1923 to Peter and Annie [Sjoquist] Gabrielson at Spy Hill, Saskatchewan. She was baptized in the Norwegian Lutheran Church. She and her only sibling Lillian Evangeline were home schooled in their early years and later attended the Bavelaw School, walking three and a half miles to get there. They both took their grades 9 and 10 by correspondence. They lived on a farm and enjoyed all their animals and helping their parents with the farm work. Times were hard in the thirties but they enjoyed school and the country dances as their dad played the fiddle at the dances. They enjoyed wild berry picking with friends and relatives.
Vivian married Bernard Nelson of Grandview, Manitoba on November 2, 1951 and joined the Grandview United Church at that time. They had four children: Vernon, Brian, Herbert and Barbara. She enjoyed their farm life, with animals always being a huge part of it, be it the horned hereford cattle, the milk cows, chickens, ducks, dogs and cats. Even up till she became ill, her beloved cat Blackie kept her company in her home and gave her a reason to get out of bed each day. Vivian enjoyed getting her children to school, country music, dancing, bowling, crocheting, sewing and picture taking. With all four children involved in 4H programs, life was busy back then. Sundays after church always meant summer family picnics at Baldy Mountain or the Roadside Park with the Greer, Neil and Kangas families. Vivian always grew a big garden and kept busy preserving fruit, pickles, jams, relish and Jellies. She passed this trait and many others on to her daughter Barb. Vivian was a member of the Grandview United Church Choir from 1983 to 2010. She was a proud, loyal member of the Duck Mountain Womens Institute for 55 years. She was on the Manor Board for 30 years. She was a regular exhibitor at the local fairs for many years, taking her prize winning baking, flowers, houseplants and crafts.
Family was always very important to her. She attended many Sjoquist family reunions and kept in touch regularly with her many cousins. In 1999, she went on her very first airplane ride with her daughter Barb, sister Lillian Greer and great niece Blair Hamilton all the way to Norway and Sweden. They travelled to the farm in Sweden where their father was born, where their grandfather had built all the buildings on the farm, which were still standing and in excellent condition. They met up with many relatives throughout Sweden and Norway and drove past the area of Sweden where her husband’s family lived before they immigrated to Canada. It really was a trip of a lifetime for all of us. Vivian and Bernard lived on the farm in the Duck Mountain district close to the Meharry Elevator until October 1984, when their son Vern and his wife Arlene took over the home farm. Vivian and Bernard moved into their new home at 122 Swain Street in Grandview, and she kept busy there with her garden, yardwork, preserves and fruit trees.
Bernard passed away on June 3, 1997. Vivian was able to remain in her house until Thanksgiving of 2021 with the help of her sons Brian and Herb, who moved back to Grandview to work. Sadly, Vivian became very ill at Thanksgiving and was hospitalized. She was no longer able to live at home and spent the last two months of her life at the Grandview Personal Care Home, where she passed away on December 27, 2021 at the age of 98 years, 9 months. Vivian was predeceased by her husband Bernard, her parents, sister Lillian (James) Greer, in laws Anne (Holger) Ericson, Nels Nelson, many aunts, uncles and cousins and of course many of her friends. She leaves to mourne her sons, Vern (Arlene), Brian, and Herb, daughter Barb (Darcy) Kozack of Rossburn; Grandson Aaron and Great grandson Parker; nieces Patti Banks, Debra (Ron) Hamilton, Janet (Dwaine) Balak and Bernice (Brian) Lehky; her precious cat Blackie and her fur grandbabies Rosie and Buddy. Funeral Services for Vivian Nelson were held on January 4, 2022 from the Grandview United Church with Reverend Karen Kuzek officiating. Pallbearers were Rod Clark, Dennis Korzeniowski, Jim Donald, Kent Topham, Aaron Nelson and Dean Morran. Interment was at the Grandview Memorial Gardens. If friends so desire, donations may be made in Vivian’s memory to the Grandview and district Community Foundation. Nairn Chyz – Wolkowski Funeral Service Ltd. of Roblin, Manitoba in care of arrangements.
The family of Vivian Nelson would like to thank Dereck and Robyn for their compassionate and professional help with Mom’s funeral arrangements. To Reverend Karen Kuzek for going to visit with Mom, and for doing such a beautiful service for Mom. The United Church played a very huge role in Mom’s life, and it was only fitting to say farewell to Mom from her Church. She would have been pleased with the service. Thanks to all the people who sent messages of condolences, food, gifts, flowers, cards and hugs, both virtual and in person, it was so greatly appreciated. Thanks to the pallbearers for carrying Mom to her final resting place beside Dad. Thanks to all the people that have helped Mom in the last few years in any way. There really are angels among us. A life well lived, rest in peace Mom.
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