Ludwig “Louie” Stubenvoll
August 5, 1933 – January 20, 2014
It’s a long way from Sopron Hungary to Ponoka, Alberta. That journey started when, in 1933, Karl and Katrina named the 7th of their 8 children “Ludwig” – known to us as Louie, and now the last of his generation. He survived the war as a child, and after his father’s death, accompanied his family in deportation to Malchenburg, Germany. There he began to work with wood, apprenticing as a cabinet maker. But Louie heard the call to a better life, and chose Canada over Australia. In 1951 the ship “Fair Sea” brought him to Quebec City. He tried out the life of a farm hand in Ontario, but shortly made his way west.
In 1952 Louie discovered Ponoka. For 5 years he held a variety of jobs here: on Herman Kneller’s farm, building sidewalks with Rossanders & Sorenson, building the drive-in theatre with Art Trelevson, and was later with Gordon Dichau. In ’57-’58 he went to Fort Smith constructing a school and hostel. But something drew him back to Ponoka, then working for Norm Berg building homes for families in Ponoka.
In 1960 Louie started his own family when he married Elaine Gee. In due course, that family grew: Daniel, born in 1963, Rita in ‘64, Deanna in ‘65, Allan in ’67, and Raymond in ’69 – Ray actually being born in Kelowna because Louie and family had moved to Winfield in 1967. However, Ponoka pulled him back again. In 1972 Louie built his family a house on an acreage south of town, and together they made it a home. For a time he continued some off-farm jobs, like the gas plant, before farming full time.
As a man who travelled far to get here, Louie continued to love travel. He enjoyed touring Europe by bus. In retirement, he had time to cruise: Alaska, and some southern, warmer destinations. His last cruise was from Australia through the islands of the South Pacific. He also found great pleasure in visiting his daughter Deanna and her husband Julius in Tracy California.
Retirement meant not only the excitement of international travel, but, and maybe even more important to Louie, his time over coffee with friends at the Crossroads or Tim Horton’s. Time to share about folks, and, of course, to discuss farming. These times with his friends were a source of tremendous enjoyment.
Maybe less known about him was how much he appreciated walking around on his farm. Either alone or with someone to chat about the weather with, these times nourished Louie’s heart.
As important to him as all that, I know that what he valued the most was his family. I hear that he could be excitable, but that was just a reflection of how much he cared. He was very proud of all his children, and seemed to thrive when they were all together with their friendly banter. Louie took great interest in how his two grandsons Tyler and Reid, were doing, and always brightened up when his granddaughter Jessica came by for a visit. And at the centre of all this family was his life partner, whom he deeply loved, Elaine.
Louie is survived by his wife Elaine; son Dan (Shauna) and granddaughter Jessica; daughter Rita (Pat) McNulty and grandsons Tyler and Reid Schafer; daughter Deanna (Julius) Frank; son Allan; sister-in-law Violet Stubenvoll; as well as many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his son Ray and all of his siblings.
A Funeral Service was held at the Ponoka Funeral Home at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, January 25, 2014. Memorial donations are gratefully accepted to the Alberta Heart and Stroke Foundation. To express condolences to Louie’s family, please visit www.womboldfuneralhomes.com.
Arrangements Entrusted To Ponoka Funeral Home
~ A Wombold Family Funeral Home ~