June 8, 1931 - June 2, 2018
In the early morning hours and with great sadness, Lore, beloved wife of Cornelius, mother and grandmother passed away after a long exemplary struggle with illness and gradual decline. She ultimately succumbed to the effects of two consecutive strokes.
Surrounded by family and loved ones, and in the caring hands of the staff at the Concordia Hospital, Lore left us while in their palliative care. She gave us one final example of the grip life had on her, and would not give up quickly. She did not suffer, but shone more and more as her last day approached.
She died beautiful.
Lore is survived by her husband Cornelius and her three children Hans, Eric (Eileen) their two boys and Lore’s grandchildren Elias and Marcus, and Karl (Mary).
Lore is also survived by Sisters Edith (Richard), Erika (Eugene), Brother Alfred (Donna), stepbrother Heinz, and stepsister Viktoria. Mourning her loss are numerous nieces and nephews who loved her as well.
It was Lore’s wish that no funeral service be held. In lieu of flowers the family request you hug a loved one.
A casual come and go gathering for family and friends will take place in the coming weeks.
Memories, Stories and Condolences
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Beloved Lore's story is an extensive one. Filled with all the elements required of an arc, that if one were to chronicle it from beginning to end and in the right hands, it would become a novel difficult to put down. These days of course, it would subsequently be adapted as a screenplay and picked up by Netflix to become an Original in their 'Popular' category.
A story that begins peacefully, as many do, in a small village, 1931. (Halbstadt, Ukraine, the second child and one of three daughters born to Hans and Erna Loepp). Those of you familiar with this part of the world, during this era of the 20th century, understand that the peacefulness would not last. But prior to the turmoil that would come, Lore did account many stories of her childhood growing up, that explained a lot as to why she was who she was. The foundation set, by the influence of her parents, to work hard, to not waste, and to appreciate everything that was received during increasingly meagre times. Many of her accounts also included moments of playfulness, mischief and trying to prove to her father that she was as strong as any boy.
As we go along in this time line, the political forces at play set Mom's family to go on the run and into hiding, fleeing from village to village from Halbstadt to the Caucasus region. Hardships encountered along the way introduced Lore to her first brush with her own demise by nearly succumbing to malaria. Overcoming this, what then comes soon after, is her first traumatic life changing experience. She witnesses the forceful removal of her father, at the hands of others, at the age of eleven. He was never to be seen or heard from again, leaving Lore, her mother and two sisters to fend for themselves.
Now, remember the idea of a novel alluded to earlier? It would be at this point the author would further present Lore's story in greater detail. He or she would fill in events of the subsequent and early teen years during a paradoxical calm that occurred while living in the presence of an occupying army still in control. This, as we know wasn't to last. As the war wore on and the control of the Germans waned, the women realized that if they were to remain, the consequences would likely be more dire than choosing to join alongside the retreating army as refugees. Close calls, courage and sacrifice, separations, hardships and astounding human kindness, would find her and her family brought to Germany. It is now the tail end of the war and she is fourteen.
From Germany in 1948, the girls along with their Mother board a ship bound to South America. They find themselves, along with many others of similar background, off to the country of Paraguay. The government there offers a jungle known as the Chaco to break and homestead. This, with many others, they do.
It is here that Lore meets and marries Heinz Leonhardt, they have one son, Hans. Through her own choosing this union does not last and Lore finds herself a single mother. Alone, and with a son nearly four years of age, she decides to leave Paraguay and head back to Germany. With the help of kind individuals she starts a new phase of life. She finds employment as part of the cafeteria staff at Hamburg's Hauptbahnhof. These were good but challenging times for her, all the while raising her son.
In the interim, Lore's younger sister Erika continues her own journey and emigrates from Paraguay to Canada, landing in Winnipeg. Older sister Edith remains in Paraguay to raise a family of her own. Erika encourages Lore to join her and in 1960, along with Hans, she does. Their mother (Erna), remarried to Hermann Schirmacher with their son Alfred, follow several years later.
Not long after in 1963 Lore meets Cornelius at the monkey cages in the zoo. They marry the following year in February and have two sons, Eric in 1966 and Karl in 1968. In Winnipeg, Lore finds her final home. Here she finds a place to finally anchor and establish herself as a wife, mother and ultimately grandmother.
Lore left a legacy of her life behind that could be described similarly as to steel. Tempered by hammer blows and hardened by fire she was made stronger than many. Her love was fierce and unbreakable. If you had her love, you knew it. You will be missed by so many.
We love you and always will.
In memory of Lore, below is her favourite passage:
The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord