Bernhard (Ben W.) Penner

1932 – 2015

Ben Penner sqDad, Bernhard (Ben) W. Penner was born on July 3, 1932 to Peter and Agatha (Wiebe) Penner. The Penner family moved to the Thornhill District, West of Morden, from the Grimsby School District, South of Plum Coulee in 1938. He received his formal and informal education at the Mountain City School, southwest of Morden. He was baptized upon the confession of his faith in the Sommerfeld Mennonite Church on May 26, 1956 by Bishop John A. Friesen. Dad enjoyed his working career and he often told us stories of his experiences and the people he met.   He was employed with the pipeline in Alberta and Saskatchewan, farmers in Southwestern Manitoba, and the Research Station in Morden. He purchased his first quarter of land in 1959, continuing to farm and to work at the Research Station until 1963. On September 17, 1961, Dad married Tina Reimer of the Blumenfeld village. They settled on the farm known as the “Unrau Farm”, southwest of Morden. The farm continued to grow during lean and prosperous years.   What began as a farm milking two cows ended 30 years later with a dairy. Not only did the farm grow, as well the orchard in his garden. He enjoyed working with the fruits tree, grafting and pruning. Our parents retired to Winkler in the fall of 1995, Dad continued to help Bill on the farm until 2010. He also enjoyed his coffee time with family and friends and neighbors, meeting people, and enjoying a conversation with anyone.  He had the ability to converse with anyone and loved to share his stories and experiences. He was generous and very astute with numbers and figures.

Dad was relatively healthy and robust man, enjoying good health into his late seventies.   On February 13, 2015, Dad was admitted to Boundary Trails Health Center with pneumonia and related issues. He stay in the hospital and had many ups and down, at the end he seemed to be getting stronger. He had informed Mom he was going home for his birthday celebration. Mom had assured him as soon as he would be home they would enjoy his birthday, even if it was in December. Dad passed away Friday morning, June 26, 2015.  During his stay at Boundary Trails Health Centre, he appreciated the excellent care he received from the medical team.   He enjoyed and appreciated everyone that came to visit. 

He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Tena, daughter, Marge and her two children, Heather and Matthew; son, Peter and Edna and their two children, Chelsea and Derek; son, Bill and Val and their two children, Tiffany and Colton; daughter, Barb and Myron Derksen and their two children, Caleb and Hannah.   Dad is also survived by his sisters, Marge Unrau and Tina Hildebrand, and his brother Abe and Susie Penner.   He was predeceased by his parents, Peter R. and Agatha Penner and sisters, Mary, Helen, Susan and Ruth, his brothers David, George and John. Dad we knew you were tired, enjoy your birthday party in heaven.  We will miss your smile and bright blue eyes. 

Funeral service at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday June 30, 2015 at Winkler Mennonite Church with interment at Westridge Memorial Gardens. If friends so desire, donations may be made in Ben’s memory to Boundary Trails Health Centre Palliative Care Box 2000 Winkler, MB R6W 1H8. As a family, we would like to thank the medical team for the excellent care Dad received in the Medical and Rehab ward at Boundary Trails Health Center. Thank you for the visits Dad received at the hospital and the visits, calls, food and prayers we have received during this time of loss. We would like to thank the ministerial and Ladies Aid of the New Hope Mennonite Church for their visits and prayer support during this difficult time.

Wiebe Funeral Home, Winkler

In care of arrangements

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