Blanche McKay was born April 12, 1933 in Red Willow, Alberta, the third of five daughters of Russell and Pearl Haner. Growing up with her sisters on the farm she learned her work ethic at an early age, whether helping her dad with farm chores, her mom with house and garden duties or working for the neighbours.
In 1950 she married the love of her life Jerry McKay and they were blessed with six children: Keith, Betty, Martha, Russell, Murray and Edward. From 1950 until 1973 Blanche’s life was filled with her role of loving wife and mother.
In 1973 she started a new venture when she and Jerry purchased the convenience store, Rosedale Grocery. For the next twelve years the store was their life. For several years Blanche looked forward to travelling to surrounding communities when Jerry played for dances. She never tired of listening to the music.
Beginning in 1975 she assumed what might have been her favorite role…Grandma. Over the years as the grand kids arrived she embroidered each of them a baby quilt followed by another one as they moved to a “big kid bed.” She also kept busy with knitting afghans for everyone and kept the whole family supplied with knitted dishcloths. Visits from her fourteen grandchildren and more recently her seventeen great-grandchildren were always a highlight of her day.
After Jerry passed away in September of 1993, Blanche remained active dedicating many hours volunteering at the hospital helping others and brightening their days. She moved to Paragon Place Lodge in 2007 and remained there until her passing. She made many good friends in the lodge and enjoyed many hours visiting, working on the puzzles and listening to the musical entertainment.
Blanche is survived by her loving family: daughter-in-law Dawn McKay; Betty (Bob) Schreiber, Martha (Jack) Rairdan, Russell (Marlene) McKay, Murray (Donna) McKay and Edward (Maureen) McKay: grandchildren Ryan (Grace) McKay and their children Nolan and Morgan, Cristin (Kyle) Marr and their son Kellan; Carly Schreiber (Christopher McMechan) and their children Aven and Wren, Raelynn Schreiber (Greg Betts) and their children Brynlee and Emylia, Terri Rairdan (Roy Duncan) and their son Logan, Toni Squires and her children Jesse and Jackson, Traci (Kevin) Smith and their children Jordan, Reese and Brooklynn, Corey (Liesa) McKay and their children Abigail and Eloise, Blaine McKay, Scott (Justine) McKay and their children Austin and Alexa, Brett McKay, Kurt McKay, Myles McKay, Connor McKay, sisters Elpha (Ron) Senft, Maxine Hansel and Annice Erichson; nieces, nephews, numerous other family and a host of friends.
Predeceased by husband Jerry, parents Pearl and Russell, son Keith McKay, sister Mildred McMillan and brothers-in-law Joe Hansel and Ray Erichson.
Private graveside service was held at Gadsby Omega Cemetery, on June 1, 2018; pallbearers were her beloved McKay grandsons Ryan, Corey, Blaine, Scott, Brett, Kurt, Myles, Connor; and family gathered together for a time of fellowship and remembering of Blanche at a family home. Memorial donations may be made to Alberta Heart and Stroke.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.stettlrfuneralhome.com. Stettler Funeral Home & Crematorium entrusted with the care and funeral arrangements 403-742-3422.
Stettler Funeral Home & Crematorium