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Jane Schafer Jane Schafer

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Jane Barbara Schafer

July 3, 1938 - February 28, 2021

Tribute

Jane Barbara Schafer

 

Friends are like flowers, beautiful flowers

Friends are like flowers in the garden of life. 

(Hi God 2, Song)

Our dear wife, Mom, Grandma and GG, Jane sang and lived her entire life by the words of this song.  To Mom, life was a garden she tended with gentle touch of her hands.  “Bloom where you’re planted” she would say and always “spread seeds of kindness” where ever you go!  “Be a good listener and your strong spirituality will guide you to do or say the right thing.”

Jane was born July 3, 1938 in Humboldt, SK to Maxmillian & Susana Mueller.  She was eighth in a family of 10 siblings and their large German family called Marysburg, SK home. Jane proudly described herself as a ‘farmers daughter’. She was her Daddy’s shadow and loved hauling grain to the elevator as she would be treated to a bag of rubber necks (today we call ju jubes).

“Where there is music there’s happiness.” (Jane)

Sundays were a day of rest on the farm, highlighted with family sing songs around the old player piano on which Jane learned to “tickle the ivories.”  Her passion for music and her talent to play the piano remained strong.  Jane enjoyed showing off “her magic piano” that plays old music rolls by itself when you pedal.  The piano remains a cherished family treasure!

In the Mueller family, Mom was the cookie and cake baker, honing and teaching her skills for a lifetime of family favorites such as Meat Buns, Rickety Uncle, and her famous Quickie fudge.

As a child, Mom was destined to teach, setting up imaginary classrooms of students, ringing the bell, writing on the blackboard, reading stories, and singing songs such as Teddy Bears Picnic & Little Daisy.   In 1957, Jane was the youngest first year teacher in the Humboldt School District assigned to a one room school with grades 1 to 5 in Dixon, SK.  She went on to East Prospect school where she taught seven children in seven grades.  Her teaching career spanned over 36 years from 1957-1993.   After teaching at 4 schools in the Saskatoon Catholic School Board, Jane retired in 1993.

“A willingness to share, smile and listen

makes my journey of life most exciting each day.” (Jane)

 

Jane married Leo Berscheid on July 15, 1959.  He was the tall, handsome, youngest child of the Nick Berscheid family from Lake Lenore, SK.  Jane and Leo lived in Wilkie SK, moving to Saskatoon where they raised their 4 children,  Kathy (Yeager), Max, Jody,  Meegan (Dagenais).  All of us were taught to “stand on your own two feet and be a leader but listen well”.  Birthdays, Christmas’ and family gatherings were cherished and celebrated with great joy and festivity.  Although we were raised to be “totally independent and always do our best, family was forever”. 

 

“The family that prays together, stays together.” (Jane)

The following were some of Jane’s favorite life lessons taught to her children, quoted in her words:

 

“You can do this, it’s up to you!” (Jane)

 

Kathy (Ward Yeager) –  “Relish your time out, quiet space to do my hobbies, read, bake or                                                 whatever.  Just a time to re-energize”  “always keep a secret stash”

 

Max Berscheid (Deb) –   “work makes life sweet”  “be generous with time”   “be a ready and                                                          willing hand”  “be a community minded citizen”

 

Jody  Berscheid  (Tracy)  – “always save up for a rainy day-you never know how long it could rain”

                                                  “It is more satisfying to be the server than to be served”

 

Meegan (David Dagenais) – “cherish kind, honest friendly folks who are willing to share”

                                                 “love music and dance”  “be a peace maker and friend to all”                                                     “expression and joy of writing”

 

As her family grew, Grandchildren blossomed in Jane’s garden!  They were her pink roses, sweet and fragrant with energy and new life.  Jennifer (Giocoli), Brandy (Yeager), Dustin (Yeager), Mercedes (Yeager),  Austin (Berscheid), Dallas (Cantera), Casandra (Dagenais), Breanne (Dagenais),

Danny (Galenzoski),  Brittany (Galenzoski)

 

Life’s gifts are many but few can compare,

to the love and warm feelings that families share. (Jane)

 

In 2017, Jane to her delight became a GG!  Antonio Rocco Giocoli, her first Great Grandchild shared her love of singing and reading!!  Antonio would take GG on joyous journeys each day with his videos and Facetime.  A frequent Westjet flyer from Saskatoon, Antonio learned how to crawl at GG’s.  Antonio’s voice singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star was Mom’s all time favorite song in her final days.

 

In 2019, precious Willow Elizabeth Galenzoski arrived.  Although they never met in person, Willow became a great student and a quick learner.  A mighty little branch, Mom smiled at Willows videos and watched with quiet understanding.

 

‘Being a consistent role model, each and every day in a busy happy classroom, gradually all my tasks are sequenced and fall into timeframes so naturally and comfortably.(Jane)

 

In Saskatoon, Jane became fondly known as “Mrs. B” as Berscheid was a big mouthful for her little Grade One students!

 

With her family grown up and extra time available, Jane had a strong desire to fulfill another life dream.  She would combine her deep love of music and strong spirituality to form and lead a children’s choir at St. Anne’s School.  It grew so popular with the students, it expanded into a large musical Christmas pageant at St. Anne’s Church.  It was the unconditional love she felt for all her students that compelled Mrs. B to write original productions, late into the night. She longed to ensure every child would sparkle and shine in a special role.

And as her life song lyrics read,

 

Are you a daisy, are you a rose, are you a dandelion,

you can be what you are, I’ll be what I am,

we can be friends in the Garden of Life.

On Sunday June 26, 1988 life took a sudden turn with the passing of her husband, Leo from a heart attack.  ‘Remember God is my guide, so fear nothing’ Jane took refuge in her spirituality.

The following year, church friends introduced Jane to a bachelor Murray Schafer who was living in Regina.  Mom, always private, announced to the family she was attending weekly Sunday mass in Regina!  One weekend, Jane asked Kathy & Ward if she could bring “a friend” to dance at the Manhatten Ballroom.  Murray was introduced.  He was loved but overwhelmed by Jane’s 4 grown children, spouses and 4 Grandchildren.   Murray’s first family Easter basket contained a plush rabbit with chocolate raisins sewn to the bunnies butt.  As he gently lifted out the rabbit, the long string of raisins dangled.  Welcome to our family, dear Murray!!!  He was so gracious and red faced!!

Jane married Murray Schafer on July 14, 1990.  Mom describes their relationship as an “Endless honeymoon, peaceful, gentle and caring.  Genuine friendships do make a marvelous marriage.  Loving and giving make life worth living, especially with a gentle, kind, caring gentleman as Murray”. Their marriage was an “onward journey hand in hand, heart to heart with Murray”.   It was her beautiful smile, delicious baking and spotless home that smitten him!

Flowers need sunshine, flowers need rain,

flowers need loving care,

helping each other in sunshine or rain

we will be friends in the Garden of life.

 

Murray and Jane retired to a “charming peaceful and magical town”, Chemainus BC.  They started a new life where golfing, gardening, traveling and endless community volunteering filled their sunshine days!! Their 30 years were ‘rich and fulfilling socially and spiritually’ as Jane wore many hats particularly at the Chemainus Senior Centre; Kitchen & Esthetics Director, Monday Bingo organizer, 3 sold out Prairie Reunion Dinner Shows and Clog/Line dancing performances.  Jane & Murray loved to square dance at Ladysmith Diamond Squares and Cowichan Cloverleafs Clubs.  Ladysmith Probus Club presentations and activities were of great interest to Jane.  Murray and Jane were donors and season ticket holders of Chemainus Festival Theatre.  The Chemainus Thrift Store and Chemainus Legion were other organizations Jane & Murray were very passionate about.

 

In 2012, Jane and Murray felt privileged & honored to receive Volunteer Couple of the Year Golden Brush Award presented by Chemainus Chamber of Commerce.  Retirement was full as Jane’s garden of beautiful friends grew into acres!

“Love is the thread that binds us together!”

“Busy hands make light work” was a repeated adage by Mom!  Always leading through example, Mom’s hobby of hand stitching original greeting cards with metallic thread was her “spiritual recess” .  Over the years, Jane always took a Moment to respond to every letter or card from former students, family and friends.  No small gesture from others went unrecognized!  Mom touched many hearts and many hearts reciprocated!   Oh Mom, you have saved every card, note and picture of your life journey.  And we Thank You for all these seeds of remembrance!

However, in 1986, 1996, 2006 and 2012 Jane endured 4 cancer surgeries.  A rare sarcoma cancer kept returning in different right leg muscles.  Although successful, each surgery reduced her precious mobility.  Determined to always walk and dance, too proud to use a cane or walker, Mom greeted each day with her beautiful smile and gratitude in her heart for life.  Although residual pain became excruciating, she soldiered on without complaint!  In her words, “during our cancer battles, we laugh a lot and find it to be our BEST marital medicine!”

Mom, our wise teacher, left us these powerful words to ponder:

Resolve to be tender with the young,

compassionate with the aged,

sympathetic and tolerant with the weak and wrong.

Sometime in life you will have been ALL of these! (Jane)

 

Early Sunday Feb. 28th, God called Jane home to a higher teaching position. Mom fought to live long enough to spend private time with each of her children.  These moments, her last gift during her final week in palliative care, she continued teaching us with her eyebrows, pointer finger and hand holding.  We sang, laughed and cried with Mom as we reminisced about her precious 82 years.  And when she was ready on Sunday morning, a day of rest and family time, she began yet another new “spiritual journey”!

Our Prairie Rose has returned home.

Mountains of hugs and kisses, til we meet again…..

Auf Wiedersehen!

 

In lieu of flowers, please continue Jane’s legacy of reading and music for children

and buy a child a book.

 

Or donations can be made to:

 

Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools Foundation.  420 22nd St E, Saskatoon, SK  S7K 1X3  (306) 659-7003   www.foundation.gscs.ca

 

Chemainus Healthcare Foundation.  Box 462, Chemainus, BC  V0R 1K0

(250) 715-8175  www.chemainushealthcarefoundation.ca

 

 

 

 

Condolences

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From: H.W. Wallace Cremation & Burial Centre

H.W. Wallace Cremation & Burial Centre staff send our condolences to family and friends.

From: Carol-ann Rolls

Murray and family – may your many memories and cherished times together bring you comfort now and in the future. My sincere condolences.

Service Schedule

Private service arrangements have been made.

Memorial Gifts

Greater Saskatoon Catholic Schools Foundation.  420 22nd St E, Saskatoon, SK  S7K 1X3  (306) 659-7003   www.foundation.gscs.ca

 

Chemainus Healthcare Foundation.  Box 462, Chemainus, BC  V0R 1K0

(250) 715-8175  www.chemainushealthcarefoundation.ca

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