Mavis Irene Stegen passed away peacefully at The Good Samaritan Society in Medicine Hat on Wednesday January 30, 2019, at the age of 88 years. Mavis leaves to cherish her memory, her loving husband, Ben and her two children, Carol (Dale) and Grant (Leanne). She was so very proud of her grandchildren: Jenna (Rory), Tiffany, Todd, Carly, Kayla, Janelle and her two great-grandsons, Ben and Luke. Mavis is also survived by her brother, Hugh Giffard and her niece, Marjorie (Gerald) Kornelson. Mavis was predeceased by her parents, Rosalind and Alan Giffard, three brothers-in-law, Harry Stegen, Leonard Stegen, Norman Stegen, sister-in-law, Alice Stegen and a very special niece, Marilyn Ross.
Mavis was born January 21, 1931 in England and survived WWII during her childhood years. She took her Initial Teacher Training (ITT) and after teaching several years in England, decided it was time to embark on an exciting adventure, travelling and teaching around the world. She came to Canada in 1958, and was given a teaching assignment in Jenner, AB where she met the love of her life, Ben. They were married the following year in England and returned first to Iddesleigh, AB, then later to the ranch east of Jenner to make their home and raise their two children, Carol and Grant.
Over the years, Mavis taught at Jenner, Patricia, Ralston, Buffalo and the Jenner Colony. She was very involved in the Rainy Hills Lutheran Church, Toastmasters in Brooks, and was the I & J Gas Coop Manager for many years. Mavis loved being part of the LAMP ministry that flew into remote communities in the north to teach Vacation Bible School. She happily put on many miles driving her children to 4-H, piano lessons, rodeo and hockey.
Mavis visited England many times over the years and especially loved to spend time in the Lake District where she could be found doing 10-15 km hikes, even at the remarkable age of 80. She also hiked in Northern Ontario and in Austria with a like-minded group of ladies who called themselves the “Tough Old Birds”.
After Mavis and Ben retired to Medicine Hat in 1995, she continued to stay busy and was involved in the Unity Lutheran Church and the Alberta Synod. She was also a steady volunteer at the Medicine Hat SPCA where she could be found walking dogs and organizing Bingos, as well as being on the Board of Directors. After her sudden stroke in 2012, Mavis’ busy lifestyle changed, but she continued to enjoy time with her family, and loved her visits from her little grand dog, Myah.
Mavis had a smile that would light up a room and was always happy to contribute her time and unique organizational skills to any person or group that needed her.
A Celebration of Mavis’ life will be held at Cook Southland Funeral Chapel, 901-13 Street S.W., Medicine Hat, on Tuesday, February 5, 2019, at 1:00 p.m. with Diaconal Minister Lila de Waal officiating. Memorial donations in Mavis’ name may be made to the SPCA, 55 Southwest Dr. SW, Medicine Hat AB, T1A 8E8; Rainy Hills Lutheran Church, Box 216, Jenner, AB T0J 1W0; or The Good Samaritan Society, 550 Spruce Way SE, Medicine Hat, AB T1B 4P1.
Dear Ben, Carol, Grant & families,
My condolences on the loss of your dear wife, mom, and grandmother. I fondly remember Mavis as being one of the strictest and important teachers I ever had at Jenner School. Her belief in her students and ability to push us to excel was just one of her outstanding traits. Her commitment to community was also a characteristic many in the region relied upon and appreciated. May your memories of her special being bring you comfort. Kind regards, Lawrence and family
Our sincerest condolences to the whole family. We didn’t know Mavis but do know Carol. Seeing what we see in Carol, Mavis would have had to have been a kind, caring and compassionate lady. Blessings and prayers to you.
From Ben J Mandel & family.
Dear Ben & family.
Our condolences on the loss of your dear wife, mom, and Grandmother.We fondly remember Mavis as one of our best neighbours. I personally remember moving into the Jenner area in 1980, Ben & Mavis were very helpful, always had a friendly smile & ready to talk to you. My children remember Mavis as being strict, fair and very interesting teacher. May God bless her, and may she rest in Peace.
To Ben and family: Our sincere condolences on the passing of Mavis. May fond memories of a special wife, Mom, Grandma & Gt. Grandma bring you comfort. She was a fun lady... & full of zest for life! She will definitely be hiking the Hills of Heaven!
Dear Jenna, Rory, and family:
Loving thoughts and sincere sympathy are with you, your Mom, and siblings, and your Grandfather.
She had to be a beautiful lady to have had such adventures. She lived a full life and raised a wonderful family. My prayers are with all of you.
I have a testimony that in some future time you will see and literally hug your beloved Grandma once again.
Love and hugs: Grandma Zobell
In my early years as an instructor at Medicine Hat College I had the privilege of having Mavis in one of my classes. She was a vibrant person whom I never forgot even though our paths did not meet again. Her life was well lived and she was truly a role model for us all.
Dear Carol, Dale and family
I wish I had known your mother, Carol, but from the description of her life, I feel I have seen her best qualities in you. You come by Gas Co-op management very honestly! I know her spirit will carry on in you, your children and your precious grandkids. I'll be thinking of you and your mother Tuesday afternoon as her life is celebrated in the Hat. My heartfelt condolences on your loss.
Dear Ben, Carol, Grant and Families,
Deepest sympathy to all your family. May your memories and all that you shared with Mavis, your wife, mother and grandmother bring you peace in this time of sadness. We have many fond memories of the years Mavis taught us school in Jenner and she was always a kind and helpful neighbor. Rest in peace Mavis.
Sincere condolences to you Ben, and to Carol, Grant, & their families. Mavis was always an active community member & always willingly gave her time & talent to help others.
May God & your precious heart held memories give you comfort & peace as life moves on. She will be missed by all whose lives she touched.
Blessings & Prayers from Annie Musgrove & all Musgrove/Compton & Yokoyama families.
My sympathy to Ben, Carol, Grant and all their family. Mavis was a leader and example to all as she lived her life well and brought joy to all who knew her!
Sincere Condolences to the Stegen Family. Ted often spoke of Mavis teaching in Jenner. Mavis, Rest In Peace.
Dear Ben, Carol, Grant and families
Our thought and prayers are with you and your family. May you cherish all the memories of your wife, mother grandmother, great-grandmother and friend and keep them in your heart forever. Rest in Peace Mavis
Daryl & Donna Halter and family
Ben, Carol Grant and family
It is with great sadness to hear about Mavis’s passing. Mavis was on the Board of the SPCA for many years and no task was ever turned away. She and Ben also volunteered often..picking up garage sale items, shovelling snow in the shelter parking lot and the list goes on and on. Wonderful supporters!
Mavis loved animals, especially dogs. You often found her at the shelter walking our homeless dogs...and giving them her special treats. Such dedication!
I was fortunate to get to know Mavis during her time at the Good Samaritans Seniors Home in Medicine Hat, AB a few years before her passing. I volunteer doing Pet Therapy/Visiting there with my little Pomeranian Heidi. Mavis' face just brighten up when we came to visit. She was a true animal lover. She loved having Heidi sit on her lap or lay beside her in bed. A few times we took Heidi on a walk which Mavis really enjoyed from her wheelchair. We were very sad to hear of Mavis passing especially so because we didn't find out until after the funeral. I would have really liked to have come and shown my respect for her. I truly miss Mavis and our visits.