With great sadness, we announce the passing of Annette Hamelin on Saturday, January 9th, 2021 at the age of 89 years. Annette passed peacefully at the Portage la Prairie District Hospital after a brief hospitalization, with the love of her devoted husband Ulysse at her side.
In addition to her husband of 51 years, left to cherish Annette’s memory are her sister Doris Blair of Winnipeg; brother-in-law Ron and sister-in-law Stella Hamelin of Stettler AB; sisters-in-law Doris Colvin of Thunder Bay ON, and Lorette Hamelin of Winnipeg; special nephews and nieces Blake and Diane Kendall, and Jeff and Linda Blair of Winnipeg; numerous nieces and nephews throughout Canada and the United States; and life-long friends from the community.
Annette was predeceased by her beloved parents Gladys and Wilfred Desjardins; sister Ella and brother-in-law Adolf “Doc” Kendall; brothers Albert “Pit” and Norman Desjardins; brothers and sisters in-law George Blair, Tony and Blanche Hamelin, Florence and Allan Bray, Claire and Dick Blight, Joe Hamelin and Charles Colvin.
Annette grew up on a family farm in the Baie-Saint-Paul District of the RM of St Francois Xavier, and was educated primarily in the one room schoolhouse of Baie-Saint-Paul East. Given the times, Annette learned the value of hard work at a young age, something which endured throughout her life. As a young adult she worked for many years at the Eaton’s Mail Order (which also included some modelling), never missing a day despite the lengthy daily commute into the city and regardless of the weather. In later years she was employed at the Canada Revenue Taxation Centre in Transcona, another lengthy daily commute. Retirement years were spent working alongside Ulysse maintaining her flowers and their picturesque acreage. Mowing acres of grass on her riding lawnmower was a particular activity which gave Annette a true sense of accomplishment and which she continued until to her recent illness. A ‘night hawk’, late evening coffee runs to Tim’s and suburban tours with Ulysse was a nightly routine she insisted on until short weeks ago.
Over the years, Annette practiced her Roman Catholic faith throughout her daily life and through attending regular Sunday morning or Saturday evening mass as a congregator at churches in St Francois, St James-Assiniboia and Charleswood.
Above all, Annette was a dedicated wife, homemaker, and a fabulous cook. Her traditional French Canadian tourtiere was a specialty she proudly and generously shared. Having grown up in a family home where friends and neighbours routinely gathered, all were warmly welcomed to Annette’s home for coffee, a meal, or simply to visit. Quiet and genuinely kind, she loved her family and was staunchly loyal to each of them. Annette had a big heart, always putting others before self. Her years of devotion to her in-laws Corona and Alex Hamelin though their elderly years was particularly evident in this regard.
As a family we thank the devoted staff of the Portage Hospital for their support, commitment and kindness to Annette during her brief stay. Particular thanks to Dr. Aquin, nurse Tiffany, and healthcare providers Breanna and Randy.
Cremation has taken place, and due to COVID restrictions, there will be no funeral at this time. Interment and a Celebration of life will be planned at a future date when circumstances permit. To leave a message of condolence for the family, please visit Annette’s obituary page at www.mckenziesportagefuneralchapel.com.
As expressions of sympathy, if friends so wish, donations may be made in Annette’s memory to the St. François Xavier Roman Catholic Parish (Cemetery Fund), 1053 Hwy 26, St. François Xavier, Manitoba R4L 1A5.
A tree will be planted in memory and cared for by McKenzies Portage Funeral Chapel. www.mckenziesportagefuneralchapel.com
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Annette Louise (Desjardins) Hamelin, please visit our floral store.
St. François Xavier Roman Catholic Parish (Cemetery Fund)
1053 Hwy 26, St. François Xavier MB R4L 1A5