Myrtle May Pengelly

Myrtle May Pengelly

Myrtle May (Moon, Adamson) Pengelly

August 25, 1914 – March 20, 2011

Myrtle was the second oldest in a family of eight, born at Rabbit Hill, Alberta to Ed and Rose Moon. Her father had obtained work as a cattle buyer at Rabbit Hill (near Edmonton) enroute from Orillia, Ontario to homestead in the Peace River country. Eventually the homestead and the family home was established two miles east of the village of Grimshaw and Myrtle attended school in the “Byng” district, finishing at grade eight. Although she loved school and very much wanted to continue, it was expected of the older children in a family to help financially and so she left school to do housecleaning and babysitting for neighbourhood families. Times were difficult. Myrtle married Robert Adamson on a very cold day (-40 F), January 17th, 1934 and they farmed four miles west of Peace River town, on the west side of what is now “Manzer” road, like everyone else at that time without modern conveniences. There were several miscarriages and stillborns before their daughter Thelma arrived in 1939. In 1952 the marriage ended in divorce and Myrtle and her daughter moved into town. It was difficult for a single parent with little education and limited opportunities; however she worked as a waitress, grocery store clerk and as a billing clerk in a food wholesale. Being of a kind and gentle nature, she looked out for an elderly lady who was in poor health and who lived next door alone. After a year or so the old lady passed away and Myrtle inherited her small but cozy four room house. What a windfall! No more rent! When Thelma was finished with school, Myrtle went cooking in the oil patch and Thelma and a girlfriend rented the house. Myrtle continued cooking in the oil patch for about ten years. In 1960, Thelma married and in the years of 1961 and 1964 Myrtle became a very proud and loving grandmother of Myrna Rae and Owen. Since her house was rented out, whenever she was not working, she made her home with “the kids”. Of course she was always happy to see the grandchildren and she showered them with gifts every time she visited. She was especially proud to give them each their first bicycles, as they were something neither she or her daughter had ever owned. To mention just a couple of highlights in Myrtle’s life would be: a trip with her mother back to Orillia, Ontario in the 1960’s, and a six month trip literally around the world in 1965 to countries such as France, Germany, Holland, Australia, New Zealand, and many more. She was also very happy to attend Expo in Vancouver in 1986. During 1969, Myrtle was off work for health reasons and she decided to visit her sister at Pincher Creek , Alberta. She liked it there and eventually she took a job at a local restaurant. She sold her house in Peace River and bought one in Pincer Creek. She also cooked at the Prince of Wales Hotel in Waterton and at the Westcastle Ski Lodge before becoming manager of the cafeteria at the Co-Op. This was to be her last employment as she met and married Frank Pengelly, an army veteran, on October 6th, 1973. The house in Pincher Creek was sold and they lived in Frank’s house at Cowley. Now both of these people were on their own for 20 years or more, so marriage was an adjustment but they got along just fine and were very involved with the Legion and the Oddfellows/Rebekas. They loved camping and fishing, playing cards and playing darts, bowling and taking part in the seniors drop-in events. Myrtle won many trophies for playing cribbage and for playing darts. She also belonged to the Pincher Creek Hospital Auxiliary and received several plaques in recognition for the many slippers she knitted and donated to the hospital. She was also a great bridge player, as well as whist, both challenging card games. About 1980 they sold their house in Cowley and moved into Pincher Creek. After 11 years together, Frank passed away losing a difficult battle with cancer. Myrtle was devastated! Keeping the house and yard became very hard and in 1989 Myrtle moved into a senior apartment, where she remained until 1992 when she moved to Ponoka to be with her family. Her eyesight began to fail quite drastically at this time but she tried hard to make the best of things. She again lived in a senior apartment and joined the senior’s drop-in and a bowling league, a church group, the Legion Auxiliary and was an original member of the White Caners. It did not take her long to meet people and make some good friends in Ponoka. It was about this time that she was diagnosed with Macular Retina Degeneration of her eyes and gradually was forced to drop all of her favorite activities. She also could no longer read, knit play cards or watch TV. In 1994 she moved into Rimoka Senior Lodge. Throughout her life she suffered through many difficult illnesses and surgeries but she found blindness very, very hard to deal with and to accept. In April 2009, Myrtle had a fall that required hospitalization and she was then transferred to long-term-care at the Ponoka Hospital where she remained until her passing. Over her lifetime, Myrtle made many treasured friends but sadly many of them have passed away along with many family members. The remaining family and friends who took the time to write or phone always brightened her day and she was always very grateful that they took the time out of their busy schedules to say “hi” to her. She especially loved to hear from everyone at Christmas time; that was her favorite time of year. In earlier years she was well known for her decorating ability. She was a very social person and she loved to dance, loved movies or to just sit and visit with someone. She was a great seamstress and was always dressed in the latest fashions and was glad she could wear most colors. She sewed a lot of mother/daughter outfits in earlier years. If there was a scrap of material left over, then Thelma’s dollys also got a new outfit. Myrtle was predeceased by her parents Rose and Ed Moon; her brothers Sidney, Orton, Herb and Roy; her sister Pearl Drolet; her nephews Orval, Bruce and Dennis Drolet and Darcy Myers; and all her in-laws. She is survived by her daughter and son-in-law Thelma and Norman Klevyer of Ponoka; her granddaughter Myrna McLeod; her partner Duwain Kirsh of Fort MacLeod; her grandson Owen Klevyer and his wife Andrea of Edmonton; great-grandchildren Amanda and Colten McLeod and Brent , Morgan and Reagan Klevyer. She is also survived by her sisters Olive Doell of Victoria and Irene Myers of Lethbridge; as well as many nieces and nephews. Myrtle Pengelly passed away March 20, 2011 in Ponoka, Alberta. There will be no Funeral Services or Memorial at her request. Cremation has taken place. If so desired, donations may be made to the Canadian National Institute for the Blind – Research, #4, 5015-48th Street, Red Deer, AB, T4N 1S9. She lived by the golden rule; she was much loved, and will be missed but never forgotten. To express condolences to Myrtle’s family, please visit

Arrangements Entrusted To Ponoka Funeral Home

~ A Wombold Family Funeral Home ~

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