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Maria Jannette "Rita" Vandenbogerd
May 6, 1930 ~ December 9, 2023 (age 93) 93 Years Old
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On December 9th, 2023, Marie (Rita) Vandenbogerd of Swan River MB formerly from The Pas passed away at the age of 93.
She is survived by 4 of the 6 children Namely Nick Vandenbogerd of Fernie BC; Pete Vandenbogerd of Birch River MB; Paul Vandenbogerd of Prince Albert SK; Faith Rosborough ON. The youngest David passed in 2000 and the oldest Jenny Doerksen passed 5 years ago. She remained with 11 grandchildren and 32 great grandchildren.
'Rita' was one of 8 children born and raised in Zoetemeer Holland. after completing 8th grade, she worked domestically. At times she was in poor health but outlived all of her siblings.
She always was a social butterfly and loved swimming and skating. She married a few weeks before emigrating with her husband Arie later known as Harry to Manitoba.
A new language and limited income were a challenge, but she persevered, and it was a 'toss-up' playing Scrabble with her till her final year.
She became best friends with her oldest sister Nel Vandenbogerd (two brothers married two sisters) who had previously emigrated to Winnipeg.
She became a Christian 5 years after coming to Canada and remained faithful to the Lord Jesus in the good and bad times.
She made a home for her family in Dauphin, Winnipeg, twice in The Pas, Three Hills AB, and Peace River AB area (where she was a dorm mother), Mafeking and then finally as a divorced single in Swan River for 35 years. She sewed (taught by our aunt Ko on our dad's side) had a 'green thumb' which was put to good use in the greenhouse business in The Pas, she preserved vegetables and meat, drove later in life, she knitted for her grandchildren and the needy via Siloam Mission in Winnipeg. She visited family across the provinces and participated in all activities such as baking, nature hikes, berry picking and attending weddings.
Her best consolation when her son David drowned was 'Earth has no sorrow that heaven cannot heal'.
She loved singing from the time she sang the Psalms in the Dutch church, then the fervour of the evangelical hymns and chourses; also, a phase of 'scripture in song' and finally singing all these songs from memory in her old age.
She will be remembered for feeling the slightest cold draft in the house or car and her myriad ointments and medication which sustained her body till the end when a longstanding aneurysm began to leak. She died in peace with God and man and as 'smart as a whip'. She enjoyed friends and family visits till on the last day at Swan Valley Lodge where she resided for the final two weeks.