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Anne Parham (nee Kohut), age 104, passed away on October 21, 2023, in the Souris Personal Care Home, from complications arising from a fall. Anne was born in 1919 on the family farm in Rosa, Manitoba, the fourth child of six and the only daughter born to Ukrainian immigrants Samuel and Tatiana Kohut.
In 1929, the family resettled to a farm south of Souris. Ukrainian was Anne’s first language, but she quickly learned English attending Souris School and later, Lily School south of the home farm. Anne thrived at school, but despite the pleas of her older brothers, her father said she would quit after grade eight and help on the farm.
Life on the farm wasn’t easy. Chores started before dawn and seemed endless – preparing meals, tending to the animals, keeping house. Anne later left the farm for work in town, eventually landing at the CPR where her job was to call the train crews with their dispatch orders. This is where she met railroader Ken Parham, whom she married in April of 1947 on the home farm. After briefly living in Winnipeg, Anne and Ken returned to Souris in 1949, moving home to 59 Pine Ave. where Anne continued to live until entering the Souris Personal Care Home in 2021.
In 1955, son Brian arrived, followed by daughters Barb in 1957, Cathy in 1959, and finally Patti in 1966. The years that followed were filled with countless happy family memories watching her children grow and thrive, attending every game, lesson, play or concert, and celebrating every milestone. The house was filled with the aroma of wonderful food - Sunday roasts with apple pie, bread and cinnamon buns, mac and cheese, soup simmering on the stove. Visitors were always warmly welcomed and amply fed. Anne was a constant guiding presence who instilled her children with a strong sense of family values and responsibility to others, and was proud of their enduring, strong relationships.
Anne was an avid gardener, her huge vegetable patch producing enough to fill the pantry many times over. She enjoyed bingo and going for coffee with friends and spent countless hours crocheting treasured keepsakes. Anne was the last remaining charter member (1959) of the Souris Legion Ladies Auxiliary.
As time progressed, grandchildren and great-grandchildren arrived, and the song remained the same. The cookie tin and candy drawer were always well-stocked, and foul balls hopefully retrieved from the garden before she would see them. Anne and Ken would happily babysit, do the paper route, or cheer from the sidelines.
Though Anne’s mobility declined in later years, her sharp mind, quick wit, and cheeky humour never left her. She amazed us with her memories and had us in stitches with her one-liners. She would never say no to going for a drive or stopping for ice cream. Visits from her six great-grandchildren brought her a special joy in her final years.
Anne was warm, generous, and possessed with a remarkable strength of character. She will be dearly missed by those who knew her.
Anne was predeceased by her husband Ken in 1999, son-in-law Napoleon, nephews Ron and Glen, and nieces Sylvia and Tracy. The last of her generation of Kohuts, she was also predeceased by brothers John, Bill, Mike, Harry, Tony and their wives.
Anne is survived by son Brian (Charlotte), granddaughter Lisa (Jeremy), great-grandsons Warrick and Wyatt, grandson Kevin (Brittany), great-granddaughters Ella, Sophie, Blakely, and Ryleigh, daughter Barb, grandsons Christopher, Blair (Reanne) and Shawn (Blaze), daughter Cathy (Greg), grandchildren Nathan and Nicole, daughter (and in Anne’s final years, caregiver) Patti, and sister-in-law Beth, along with numerous friends and members of her extended family.
The family extends its heartfelt thanks to the wonderful staff at Souris PCH for their care of Anne in her final years.
A funeral celebrating Anne’s life was held on October 27, 2023, followed by interment at Souris-Glenwood Cemetery. Those who wish may donate in Anne’s name to the Souris-Glenwood Foundation.
As published in Brandon Sun on Nov 18, 2023, Nov 18, 2023
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