We celebrate the life of a very special lady, Emma Kryger. Grandma Emma would tell you that she wasn’t special, but she was. Emma loved her family dearly and that love was reciprocated. She was extremely generous and put everyone else’s needs before her own.
Emma Kryger was born August 4, 1927 in Sojkowek, Poland to Michael and Paulina Beier. Emma immigrated to Canada along with her mom and dad at the age of 18 months. Emma often told her family about that voyage and how she was told that she threw her toy doll into the ocean.
According to Emma, the following years were difficult times for the family. They worked hard to survive the harsh environment in their new country, never wasting, always finding a use for everything, and always making do with what little they had.
Emma often shared how the family was uprooted many times before settling on a farm northwest of Wapella. Being the oldest of nine girls Emma became the chief farm hand, whether she wanted to or not. Emma was a big help to her father and through all the hard work learned about farming and work ethic. Emma developed a love for the farm and the prairie lifestyle and this shaped her path for the remainder of her life.
Shortly after the war, Emma met a handsome young German man named Louis Kryger. He had recently emigrated from Poland. They dated for about six months and married on October 24th, 1948.
Emma and Louis began their life together. They lived at Welwyn for a short time and then bought the family farm south of Wapella where she lived until her last day. Emma and Louis had eight beautiful children, three boys and five girls. Emma loved her children and did the best she could to raise them with what she had. In addition to raising the children, farm life was demanding. Emma spent many hours milking and feeding cows, seeding, harvesting, and fencing, just to name a few. Emma had a very large garden, which led to lots of weeding and canning. Over the years she sold chickens, eggs, cream and strawberries.
Emma loved both art and nature. She loved the birds, the animals and the beauty of the natural environment. Emma consistently fed the hummingbirds, enjoying their beauty at the many feeders at her windows each season. She dabbled in painting and sketching and spent countless hours in her flower beds and vegetable garden. She even had her own famous variety of tomatoes, referred to as “Emma’s tomatoes.” The original seeds came from BC. For over sixty years she harvested the seeds and planted that same variety. She was pleased when others were interested in using these seeds and passed these seeds on to family and friends to keep that tradition going.
Sewing clothes for the family was a way of saving money, but it quickly turned into a hobby for Emma. She initially made her own patterns, and over the years she sewed many items of clothing, including wedding dresses and bridesmaid dresses. Emma helped sew quilts with the church and still did mending for her son and grandchildren.
Emma loved to socialize. Any event was an opportunity to wear her best attire and jewelry. She attended many dances around the area, went to town for coffee, whether it was to the Happy Go Lucky club or the café, and attended services at the Lutheran Church on Sundays. While visiting on these outings Emma had lots of opinions and was always willing to share them. She loved family gatherings, especially when the whole family was together. Her children and grandchildren were eager to hear stories about her early years and the hardships in Saskatchewan. You could also be assured when an important family event happened, Grandma Emma’s chocolate cake was going to be there.
Emma’s heart was filled with love for her family, her children, her grandchildren, her great grandchildren, her sisters and their families. No sacrifice was too large for any of them.
Emma was predeceased by her parents Michael and Paulina Beier, husband Louis, an infant son Baby Kryger, a son Louis Kryger, brother-in-laws Robert Steinke, Eric Hauser, Victor Leir, Ewald Hauser, Julius Steinke, Ralph Lutz, and Waldemar Beier.
Emma leaves to mourn, her loving children Emma (Keith) Montgomery, Irene (Greg) Dwernychuk, Lily (Paul) McDaniel, Karl (Susan) Kryger, Hilda (Dennis) Brule, and Linda (Loren) Pranke.
Her grandchildren which include: Emma and Keith’s children Chris (Doug) Hewett, Tyson, Kent, Lance and Warren; Irene and Greg’s children John (Eri) Dwernychuk, Kath-leen, and Andrea; Lily and Paul’s daughter Bailey; Karl and Susan’s children Briana, Travis (Shayna), Brett and Kevin; Hilda and Dennis’ children Dion (Deanna Mercer), Braden (Courtney Adams), and Gabrielle; Linda and Loren’s children Stephanie (Yin Chan) and Daniel (Christine Antonini); Her Great Grandchildren Addison Mont-gomery and Kruz Kryger; Her sisters Lola Steinke, Olga Hauser, Elsie Leir (Don Wild), Mary Hauser, Edna Lutz, Ellen Beier, Lillian (Barry) Koch, and Violet (Ron) Montgomery; as well as countless nieces and nephews.
Emma will be greatly missed by her family and friends.
Rest in peace Grandma, we will meet again.