With broken hearts we must announce the passing of our mother, grandmother, wife, sister, aunt, and friend, Gail Kartanson (Southern). As a family we are blessed to be left with no regrets, nothing left was unsaid, and nothing left undone. Not a “we should have”, “could have”, “or if only”, just simply put, we would have wanted more time with her.
Gail was born and raised in Minnedosa, moving only once to Winnipeg to spread her independent wings with her close friends. It was not long after she made the trek back home, and married her life partner of 51 years, Vern Kartanson , and shared three beautiful children.
Gail's full time job was raising her children and helping her husband tend to all the duties that farm life brought. It was not uncommon to see her tossing hay bales, driving farm implements during seeding and harvest times, and working with the cattle. If she wasn't outside she was cooking wholesome meals for the working men and making sure everyone was fed and watered, always brewing a pot of coffee for anyone that stopped by. Her green thumb was also another passion, her flower beds and gardens were immaculate and she took great pride in the beauty of her flowers and the hardy vegetables she grew always making sure their winters were stalked with canned items in the basement for the coldest of months. She was a woman that never stopped.
After her children left home she picked up a part time job at the Post Office where she had the opportunity to reconnect with many locals, which she loved. Once she retired from the post office, she kept busy helping with Legion suppers, assisting others with Christmas hampers, and hosting many school reunions for her old school classmates.
The one thing that gave her such pride was when she joined the Waves of Hope Dragonboat Team for breast cancer survivors. She travelled as far as Sarasota, Florida in 2014 to compete in a festival. She cherished that group and was saddened when she was unable to paddle anymore but she kept up with their doings and races and always cheered them on from the sidelines. Another group she cherished dearly was “her coffee friends” who met daily to chat about life's events and to lend support if needed. Towards the end, that was one of her favorite things to do because the coffee girls weren't just friends but had become her family.
Gail, to say the least, was a warrior, overcoming obstacle after obstacle but always came out with a smile, offering a kind gesture to anyone that needed it. She was liked by all and loved by so many.
Left to mourn her death is her husband, Vern Kartanson, their 3 children, David Bruce (Joan), Jeffery Scott, and Nancy Joy, 3 amazing grandchildren that she loved dearly, Sarah Marie (Chris), Tyra Justine (Noah), and Owen Matthew. She will also be greatly missed by her east coast family, which includes her sister and brother in law Janet & Ken Adams and all the nieces and nephews.
She has now reconnected with her mother, Margaret Southern, and father Edward Southern, and her brother Frank Southern. Most of us know that the reunion with one of her dearest friends, Carolyn Graham, will be so precious, the wine will be aflowth.
Gail will be and was always our family's matriarch.
Her family has requested anyone wanting to make a donation on Gail's behalf to do so through the,
Waves of Hope of Brandon.
Brandon, MB R7B 3W8
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Gail Kartanson, please visit our floral store.
Waves of Hope
Box 21054, Brandon MB R7B 3W8