Ellen Lilyan (Lily) Johannson
Life and Work
Lily Johannson enjoyed flowers. Perhaps it was appropriate that her last earthly moments were spent in her garden, admiring the brilliant red and yellow gladiolas in the warmth of an August sun. Granddaughter Suzi Dye recalls, "My fondest childhood memories are of times I spent with my grandma. She was my best friend. She was wonderful! I remember pansies - you picked them carefully with the longest stems you could get, and then put them in the pansy bowl, one by one. I remember flowers of every kind in the garden and big bouquets of cut flowers in the house. Grandma loved flowers."
A lifetime resident of the Markerville area, Lily was a loving farmwife, mother and grandmother. She was a good friend to her neighbours who remember her as being an excellent hostess - a person who accepted everyone without criticism-a person who relished a good game of cards and delighted in "dressing-up" at Halloween.
Being of Icelandic descent, Lily was bilingual, and knowledgeable about the culture and geography of Iceland. She travelled to Iceland as well as to various States. Yet, first and foremost she was a Canadian, expressing her patriotism by voting in each election and faithfully supporting community functions. Concerned with young people, she was a dedicated 4-H leader and parent who drove carloads of teenagers to a multitude of events.
An excellent seamstress, Lily made her own wedding gown. Later, she was to sew and knit for her whole family and give homemade pajamas, sweaters, mittens and baking to needy neighbours and organizations. Three regular beneficiaries were the Bethany Home for Boys, the Camrose Orphanage and Vonin.