Joan Unterschultz

Joan Unterschultz

In Memory of

Joan Unterschultz

1939 – 2011

Joan Delores Unterschultz of Vavenby, BC, passed away on January 12, 2011 at Dr Helmcken Memorial Hospital, Clearwater, BC. She was 71 years of age. Left to mourn her passing are her husband of 53 years, Roy, and children Theresa, Dean and Wilna; grandchildren Meagan, Brandon, Grant and Alisha; great grandchildren Calleigh-Anna and Hannah; sister Kitty Anne and brother Tom, numerous nieces and nephews, as well as many treasured friends and neighbours, and all who knew her. Joan was predeceased by her mother and father Leao and Joyce Donnelly and by her brothers Stan and Ray.

On February 25th 1939, Joyce and Leao Donnelly welcomed daughter Joan Delores into the world. Joan’s arrival was then quickly followed by her three brothers Tom, Stan and Ray. All four children were born within 3 yrs and 10 months. They all lived together in Barrhead, Alberta.

In 1949, when Joan was 9 years old, Leao and Joyce made the decision to move the family to Crescent Spur, BC. They took the train from Alberta and when travelling through Clearwater decided to stop and visit Joyce’s father and stepmom. The family liked Clearwater so much that they never left. Leao always said, “If you drink water from the Clearwater River, you’ll always come back.”

When Joan was 14 she started to set out on her own. She moved to Kamloops and got her first job in a Chinese restaurant. In the fall, she returned back to Clearwater to attend school. Then the following year Joan, and her best friend Fern, went by train to Uranium City.

Joan met Roy Unterschultz when she was a young lady. They loved to dance and socialize at the Clearwater Hall weekly. He would pick her up in his 1955 Pontiac and they would arrive in style. One day, on the way to one of these dances, Roy handed her a ring, and that was that.

They married June 7, 1957 and were blessed with three children. Theresa, Dean and then Wilna. What a handful!! The mischief these three got into kept her very busy but she wouldn’t have traded a moment.

She loved to spend time with her grandchildren, nieces, nephews, great grand-children and great nieces and nephews. They learned many things from her and experienced thing s that they may never have. She took them on adventures, and taught them generosity and compassion. They all have many memories that they will treasure!

Besides the children she gave birth to, there are a lot of people in this community who called her mom. She was one of the most generous souls many people ever encountered. She would give you the shirt off her back. Her extensive garden wasn’t just for the use of her family. Many people benefitted from the fruits of her labour and many hours of her day were donated to people in need, the Hospital Auxiliary Thrift Shop and the Legion. But even though she would bend over backwards for you, she didn’t like to be fussed over.

She had a lot of personal interests. She spent many hours making scrapbooks of our family history. In fact, she made a family tree and history for each of her children and each of her nieces and nephews. She also loved making chocolates, organizing community events in Vavenby, collecting antiques and stamps and don’t forget making homemade wine. Who could forget the bottles under her bathroom sink! She was also well known for wearing her thongs all year round. Joan loved to travel. She loved to just jump in the car and go check things out or drive across the countryside! She was always game!

Joan spent over 35 years sorting Vavenby’s mail. You could always count on a cheerful face when you went to pick up a parcel. And if you had a baby in tow you also count on her weighing him or her for you on the postage scale. Every year she would post pictures of the new babies born in the community and she organized a draw for a coin set for one of them. She loved to give!

Joan was a person who made an impact. She will be remembered and will always be loved!

A Memorial Service for Joan Unterschultz was held on Friday, January 14, 2011 at the Clearwater Community Baptist Church, Clearwater, BC. A Graveside Service for Joan will be held in the springtime. Arrangements entrusted to North Thompson Funeral Services, Clearwater, BC, 250-674-3030. Condolences may be sent to the family via

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