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Mom slipped away quietly and peacefully with family by her side Sunday, October 27, 2019 after recently suffering a devastating stoke. Gerri is survived by her sons Robert (Diane) and Adam, and her sister Jean Bessant. Also surviving are grandchildren Jennifer (Darcy), Zachary (Kelsey), Nicolas, Robbie and Gordie, step grandchildren Rob and Kaitlyn Scott and great-grandchildren Kinley and Kade.
She was predeceased by her parents Bob & Mary Nicol, husband Gord and daughter in-law Susan.
Gerri was born in Winnipeg on November 22, 1935, second daughter to Mary and Robert Nicol. She had a very happy childhood along with her sister Jean. Her father doted on his little girls. Gerri attended Newton High school in Winnipeg where she graduated with honors. Gerri started work at Great West Life, met and married the love of her life Gordon Charles Pankhurst, who predeceased her in 2011 after 57 years together. They had two children Rob and Adam. They moved to Portage la Prairie in the early 1960's to be involved in the family business.
Gerri served on many community organizations including Catholic Women's League, City of Portage la Prairie Library Board and the Portage chapter of Rotary International (assisting Gord) Gerri joined Beta Sigma Phi, her sorority sisters deemed life time friendships.
Summers were spent at the family cottage at Delta Beach. Sunday picnics with Bagrie Family. Winter time was curling season, she loved bonspieling. Then there was the weekly bridge session with the girls that she truly enjoyed.
Gerri was fascinated by politics, local, provincial, federal and world, she was very knowledgeable, constantly keeping herself updated regarding such. She was a life-long Progressive Conservative party member, having served as President of the Portage la Prairie Constituency Association and pursued a nomination in that's constituency. She was appointed to a three person review board that was tasked with reviewing and changing the Manitoba Liquor Act and appointed as a director of the Manitoba Liquor Commission in 1978 and the Manitoba Liquor Law Review Board in 1980.
Gerri had had a strong will and beliefs and was never afraid of telling others where she stood on something!
Gerri was a very generous person, she loved helping and giving to other people and those in need, she was a very compassionate person that could not stand to see others struggle. Gerri loved her pets and animals in general.
Gerri's love for her family was unconditional which was put to the test on more than a few occasions, her love was unconditional. Gerri's motto to live by was "Family is Everything" and she exemplified that in every day of her life, every note, card or letter ended with "Family is Everything". She loved life and had a wonderful sense of humor and an infectious ability to make other's laugh. Her greatest joy was watching her grandchildren and great-grandchildren grow and took every opportunity to spend time with them.
Mom, you may be gone but you never will you be forgotten, you will be forever remembered and loved by your family. We will attempt to live by your motto "Family is Everything"
At Gerri's request there will not be a funeral service, cremation will take place in Portage la Prairie, her ashes will be mixed with Gord's to be spread at a future date.
In Gerri's memory donations can be made to the Heart & Stroke Foundation of Manitoba, 1379 Kenaston Boulevard Winnipeg, MB R3P 2T5 or the Salvation Army, 220 Duke Avenue, Portage la Prairie, MB R1N 0S6.
A tree will be planted in memory and cared for by McKenzies Portage Funeral Chapel. www.mckenziesportagefuneralchapel.com
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