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Mary Best

Image by Nick Andréka



November 27, 1927 – February 21, 2024

Mary was born at home near Tway, Sk to Fred and Katherine Stelmaschuk. Mary married Marshall Macklem in 1949. Tragically, Marshall died of cancer in 1954. Mary married Jack Best in 1957, who passed in 1991.

Mary excelled in school and made it her goal in life to work hard and help others.

She spent most of her life as a homemaker and volunteered for many organizations. Red Cross, the Cancer Society, and the Christmas Cheer Board. She also donated blood her rare blood type as often as she could.

Mary was predeceased by her parents and her three siblings; Bill, Evelyn and Anne, both her husbands, her daughter-in law, Gerry (Bill) Goodine, son-in-law Bill Kniskern, and her beloved grandson, Morgan Gilchrist.

Mary is survived by her sister, Olga Waldick, her son, Alan Macklem (Arlene), daughter Arlene (Alan), granddaughters, Sandi Jones, Sharene Gilchrist (Collin), Miranda Johnson and step-granchildren Michelle, Jocelyn and Christine and their children and grandchildren.

She made a home for 65 years on Imperial Ave where she enjoyed sewing, Ukrainian embroidery, baking, gardening, 5 pin bowling, and collecting tea cups, silverware, and spoons.

Her favourite times were playing with her grandchildren and great grandchildren, going out to a restaurant, visiting the English Garden at the Assiniboine Park, and the Zoo.

Mary did all her own yard work including mowing the lawn, shovelling snow and even taking the axe to some stubborn bits of ice until she was ninety.

Mary was known for her caring nature, wonderful smile, and her sense of style.

Many thanks from our family to the caring staff at Tuxedo Extendicare.

Donations can be made in Mary’s name to the Alzheimer Society, Cancer Care, or Canadian Blood Services.

Memorial Service at Caboto Centre 1055 Wilkes Ave. March 27th at 1pm. Light lunch served.

Mary’s family kindly requests that all of her friends and relatives take a few minutes to honour her memory by sharing photos, memories, and stories, using the comment section on this page.


Cremation & Life Celebrations

530 St. Mary Avenue - Winnipeg

204-421-5501 -

Memories, Stories and Condolences


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Dave and Mary Hlady

May 9, 2024 at 9:27 PM

Our deepest condolences to Alen . Arlene and the rest of the family. Auntie Mary was the sweetest lady I ever knew. Many a time she would come and pick me up at the air base while traveling back to Thunder Bay from Vernon. We would go for lunch or a walk around the Forks or just go back to her house and visit Jack. She even took me to see Baba just before she passed. I will always remember that. She was a one  of a kind special lady with a smile that you could never forget. She holds a special place in my heart and I will never forget her. Once again deepest condolences to the family.

Cousin Dar

May 9, 2024 at 9:26 PM

Words cannot describe how sad it is to hear of the passing of my favourite aunt !  We always looked so farewards to going to Winnipeg as a child to see Mary and jack ,Bill,Helen,Alga and Walt and all the siblings. And of course Baba. Mary always took us under her wing and brought us shopping and our favourite place the Assiniboine zoo . She always gave the best advice on driving cars not to go too fast and always keep your hands at 10 & 3 . I was only 10-12 at that time lol she always was thinking of others. She was a prime example of taking loving care of our baba and uncle Jack in their last years . Many discussions on taking care of my mom , her sister Evelyn ,and doing my best to be good for her and my dad . You are one fabulous example of a kink, caring lady Auntie Mary and I always think of you often . To Alan , Arlene and families my thoughts are with you ! ❤️

Sheila Baker (NL/NS)

May 9, 2024 at 8:00 PM

My time with Mary was extremely brief but boy oh boy was it ever sweet!  Her beautiful smile, openness, passion and compassion quickly had me admire and respect this talented and strong willed lady.  If there is such a thing as a kindness gene, Mary passed it on to Arlene and Alan.  It was a personal loss that took me to Winnipeg and into the life of a welcoming Arlene and her family.  My time there was short but my life felt much more enriched and my heart felt that I now had a larger family, beautiful friends and wonderful memories instead of sadness. Mary insisted I choose a keepsake ornament from her collections; I choose one called "Thinking of you."  I will always think of her and smile.  Alan, Arlene and family my heart is with you!

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