It is with great sadness that we announce the recent passing of our mother Eileen Maureen Pressler (nee~Fedorchuk) in Bastion Place on the 4th day of August 2011 after a short but courageous battle with cancer.
Born in Hyas Saskatchewan April 10th, 1942 to recent immigrants, Matthew and Jennie Fedorchuk. Eileen, youngest of seven siblings, predeceased by her brother Frank, sisters Olga and Ann and most recently Lawrence (Connie). Having lost Dad (Claus Jurgen Pressler) five years ago, Mom is survived by her sons Colin and Chris Pressler, her sister Hope (Ed), brother Peter (Lynn) and her loving nieces and nephews, Sandy (Andy), Dianne (Johnny), Ken, and Janet (Larry), and brother-in-law Charlie (Gia) Pressler.
Mom was the first of her family to be born in Canada to a proud Ukrainian family of farmers who escaped Stalin’s oppressive and murderous regime arriving in Canada in 1939, settling in Saskatchewan to rebuild their lives in a new country and not speaking a word of English. Mom was raised on the prairies, small school house and most of the era’s usual simplicities. Being the youngest of her family with most of her siblings much older than her, she grew up with her nieces and nephews as cousins.
A bright and ambitious woman, mom left home at 17 to escape the limited future farm life had to offer her and moved to the “big” city of Regina then later on to Vancouver where she met her co-worker & future husband in recently graduated pharmacist Claus Pressler. Married by 1966, both of them worked hard towards their goal of owning their own pharmacy and after settling in Smithers, they had their first son, Colin Mark, followed by Christian Nicholas 2 years later. By this time they were now living in Fraser Lake where they owned and operated their own pharmacy under the Western Drug Mart banner. Due to a slower economy and recent mine closure, they took a gamble in another move to their present location of Salmon Arm. They purchased the landmark Bedford’s Pharmacy which became Western Drug Mart until Dad joined a group of ambitious owner-operators who formed the present Pharmasave franchise group of stores in 1980-1. With their success and the appreciated loyalty of the pharmacy’s clientele, mother opened her own business venture, the “Card and Gift Gallery”, which she ran until eventually selling in 1989. During the early 80’s mom was instrumental in getting a community satellite channel off the ground and was involved in many charitable services. She even ran for Salmon Arm’s council on the issue of clean water for the community. Following that she ventured into and tried her hand at various Internet network marketing businesses after which Mom joined Dad in retirement, which unfortunately, was cut short by his premature death in 2006.
Following a severe bout of pneumonia in December last year, Mom was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. After several consultations she bravely decided to try alternative medicine rather than go the conventional chemotherapy route which guaranteed nothing but further sickness. She dedicated herself to enjoying what time she had left by renovating her dream home with the goal of selling it then moving into a seniors’ care facility where she could continue healing her cancer through non-radiation avenues. Unfortunately she succumbed before she could realize her final dream.
The Pressler family would like to thank Dr. Dirk Breugum who spent many hours visiting her while under palliative care both in the hospital then at Bastion Place. Also the numerous nurses and care/aid-workers at both Shuswap General Hospital ER and palliative care at Bastion Place for their kindness in making mom’s final days as comfortable as possible.
Both our parents were genuine supporters of the Salmon Arm Summer Stomp over the past 20 years and due to it’s cancellation this year Mom decided to contribute a donation to our town’s local Hospice Society for their good works and kindly requests that in lieu of flowers that her family and friends please make a donation to your/our local Hospice Society. Fortunately Mom had loving family helping her through her ordeal whereas many people die alone without the help of the Hospice Society.
Mom request that there be no funeral service, only a simple cremation.
Funeral arrangements were in the care of Bowers Funeral Home and Crematorium, Salmon Arm, BC
Online condolences can be sent through Eileen’s obituary at www.bowersfuneralservice.com.