Cornelius UNRUH


Cornelius Unruh was born to Claude and Susan Toews Unruh on August 1, 1929 at home in the Swalwell, Alberta area. He came into this world prematurely weighing only 4 lbs. and his mother kept him warm in the warming closet of the wood cook stove. He passed away on August 13, 2015 in his room at Heritage House, Stettler, Alberta reaching the age of 86 years.

Cornelius grew up in the Linden, Alberta community but moved with his parents and siblings to the newly started congregation at Abbotsford, BC, in 1947 when he was 18 years old. He returned to Alberta moving to Stettler in 1984 at age 54 with his wife and two youngest sons.

Cornelius felt the call of God and gave his heart to the Lord when he was 14 years old and was baptized in the Church of God in Christ Mennonite at Linden, AB. He walked faithfully with the Lord until the end.

He married Anne Reimer daughter of Otto and Margaret Reimer who had also moved from Linden, AB to Abbotsford, BC, with her parents. They were married by Min. Frank Wiebe on Jan. 3, 1954 and shared 61 years of marriage with all its joys and sorrows.

On Feb. 15, 1962 he was ordained into the gospel ministry by Min. Clifford Mastre. Dad had a great love for the church and for his calling as a minister and served faithfully within his gifts. He did enjoy his own style of parables and used them in private life as well as in his sermons. He wanted all to be able to see the deep things of the scriptures. He had a compassionate heart for his fellow men and for the spreading of the gospel. In the latter capacity he and his wife spent two years in the Linwood, Ontario mission, three six month periods in the Russia mission and also in the Iceland tract work.

Dad’s faith was in the God of heaven and his greatest wish of all was that all his children and grandchildren make it into the glory land. Dad’s last illness was a 5 month ordeal with some difficult times. Numerous times during this period he expressed a deep longing to be released from this life and go to heaven.

Dad worked at various jobs in early life but eventually centered on carpentry for many years. Early in married life he also set up a laying hen farm. After relocating to Stettler he built a brand new homestead on a bare piece of ground. He loved his “plantation” as he fondly called it. Here he did a little farming and operated a woodworking cabinetry shop until retirement.

Dad was a man of grit and gamely tackled difficult tasks and saw them through. He didn’t use a master plan but believed that the plan will unfold as he went along. It was often amazing how this worked for him. While growing up he taught us that things have always worked out and so they will again.

Those left with precious memories are his wife Anne, and his children: Darlene and husband Darin Litwiller, Middleton, Michigan and their children Jessica, Melanie, Luke and Carol; Del, Stettler, AB; Barb and husband Stefan Simonovic, Coquitlam, BC and their children Tanja (Archie) and their children Ethan and Abigail, Kristina (Gianfranco) and their children Gianluca and Cristiano; Carol and husband Ed Klassen, Abbotsford, BC and their children Lance, Bentley and Travis; Ken and wife Raynelle, Edmonton, AB and their children Natasha and Chantel; Tim and wife Rita, Stettler, AB and their children Ashton, Eddason, Gavin and Gabriella; family friend Diana Shepherd who was like a daughter; one sister Anna, Enderby, BC, and two brothers Ivan (Betty), Mission, BC and Ben (Marianne), Scio, Oregon; and in-laws, Virginia (John) Giesbrecht; Glen (Frieda) Reimer; Dale (Rita) Reimer; Dorothy Reimer; Mabel Unruh; Marci (Jim) Wilson; Marlene (Bert) Wiebe; Eunice (Percy) Thiessen.

Preceding him in death were his parents, two infant siblings and three brothers; parents-in-law, three brothers-in-law and two sisters-in-law. Funeral Services were held Monday, August 17, at Church of God in Christ, Mennonite, Lakeview Congregation, Stettler, AB with interment in Fenn-Lakeview Cemetery. Condolences may be sent to the family at

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