Posted: July 10th, 2018


ELSIE OPAL McGRATH, of Lethbridge, AB, beloved wife of the late William J. McGrath, passed away peacefully at the Chinook Regional Hospital on Sunday, July 8, 2018 at the age of 83 years.

Elsie will be lovingly remembered by her daughter Andrea Knibbs of Lethbridge, AB, son Sean (Luisa) McGrath of Mississauga, ON and granddaughter Angie Knibbs of Calgary, AB. She will also be dearly missed and lovingly remembered by her niece Marilyn Anderson (Bill Elliott), grand-niece Dawn (Bob) Campbell, and their sons Riley, Wyatt, and Duncan. Elsie also leaves to mourn her beloved nieces and nephews in Manitoba – Essie, Sam (Robin), Scott (Violet), Janette, Noreen (Rick), Patty, Jocie, and Clayton (Bonny) and grandnephews Gordon of Lethbridge, and James of St. Albert. She was predeceased by her parents John Cummings and Elsie Falconer, sisters Irene Viznaugh and Marie Thomas, her brother Frank Anderson, brothers-in-law Billy Viznaugh and Ian Thomas, niece Kathy Anderson-Broderson (Brent) and nephews Len Anderson and Miles Thomas.

Elsie was born in Warren’s Landing, MB, and grew up near the shores of Lake Winnipeg. As a young adult she moved to Saskatoon and began her career as a health care aide. While working in the Saskatoon Sanitorium, she met her husband Bill, an immigrant from Ireland with a penchant for writing. He wooed her with his love letters and they married in 1959, settling in southern Saskatchewan. In 1966 they moved to Lethbridge, and Elsie began working at the Lethbridge Auxiliary Hospital, where she forged lifelong bonds of friendship with her coworkers.

Elsie had a great passion for golf. She and Bill joined the Henderson Lake Golf Club in 1967, and she received her 50 year membership award last July. She loved the game and excelled at it, winning numerous tournaments over the years, including club and city championships. More than trophies however, she valued her deep and lasting friendships with her golfing buddies. She was very much a fixture at Henderson, until these last two years when her health declined.

Each winter while Elsie waited for the course to open, she kept herself busy. She volunteered for Meals on Wheels and The Lethbridge Food Bank, and loved to help yearly with Operation Red Nose. She enjoyed her days at both the Lethbridge Senior Citizens Organization and Nord-bridge Seniors Centre, visiting and working on her puzzles. In later years she especially loved to spend time with her ‘grandboys’ Riley, Wyatt, and Duncan.

Elsie dealt gracefully and positively with her health concerns over the years. She may have walked with a limp and a cane, but she did it while humming and whistling a tune. In celebration of Elsie’s life, a Memorial Service will be held at CORNERSTONE FUNERAL HOME, 2800 Mayor Magrath Drive South, Lethbridge, AB, on Friday, July 13, 2018 at 1:00 P.M. with Reverend Glenda Wert officiating. A Reception will follow at the HENDERSON LAKE GOLF CLUB, 2727 South Parkside Drive, Lethbridge, AB, from 2:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M.

The family would like to especially thank the staff of 4C and 5B at Chinook Regional Hospital, and Drs. Leam, Brewer and MacIntyre for their kindness and care these last months.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Elsie’s name can be made to The Lethbridge Food Bank, 1016 2nd Ave S, Lethbridge, AB, T1J 0C9, or to the Patricia Beach Community Club, P.O. Box 48, Beaconia, MB, R0E 0B0.

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