November 11, 1926 – February 20, 2015

It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of Thelma (Jo, or TJ to some of her closest friends and family). Devoted wife, beloved mother, grandmother and great- grandmother, Thelma passed away peacefully at the Canmore Hospital with her daughters by her side.

Thelma was born in Stettler, Alberta and grew up on her parents’ homestead near Rocky Mountain House where her deep love of nature and the outdoors began.

Thelma worked as an administrative assistant at B.A. Oil in Stettler until she met and married her devoted husband Don, and parenting became her full time job. Once her three girls were all in school, the Dobsons moved to Coronation where Don and Thelma owned and operated several successful businesses.

In 1989, the couple took a well-deserved break, retiring to Rochon Sands, where they enjoyed golfing, gardening, entertaining family and friends, and travelling from Australia to Central America to Alaska.

A testament to their commitment to family, in 2000, Thelma and Don moved to Cold Lake to help care for their daughter Carol, who passed away in 2004.

Thelma’s love of family was evident in the joy she found in hosting large family gatherings, cooking and baking endlessly for whoever was around. She was an accomplished writer, gardener, seamstress, and knitter, and she was always looking for a new project to start on.

Thelma will be remembered for her deep sense of social justice which she passed on to her children and grandchildren. Above all, she believed one person really can make a difference in the world, whether by picking up garbage in your own neighborhood, starting a grass roots movement to stop an urban forest from being leveled, or being a mentor for young people.

Work hard, get an education, take action, and always remain mindful of the needs of others . . . these are the values that guided her life.

Pre-deceased by her husband of 50 years, Don, and her precious daughter Carol (Brad) Boychuk, Thelma is survived by daughters Diane (Ben); Barb (Joe); grandchildren: Kevin, Keri (Tyler), Kristy (Matt), Kelly (Victoria), Bryan, Alex, Katie, Ivan, Leo and Alysse; and great-grandchildren: Liam, Avery and Evelyn.

A celebration of life will be held at Ralph Connor Memorial United Church in Canmore at 1:00 pm. on Friday, March 6, 2015.

In recognition of Thelma’s commitment to social justice, donations in her memory can be made to InterPares ( or the Ralph Connor United Church Benevolent Fund.

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(403) 678-4880

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