"There is practically no activity that cannot be enhanced or replaced by knitting."
Stephanie Pearl McPhee
Alma loved to knit, and knit, and knit! Maybe it was a pair of socks, a hat, mittens or even clothes for a doll. If you could knit it, Alma had at least tried to once. Knitting was a pastime that she thoroughly enjoyed and was really good at. She could never possibly use everything she made so she was always giving away her creations to friends and family. These acts of love will keep Alma's memory alive for years to come.
Alma Annie was born in Elmwood, Ontario to parents Jacob and Emma (Weppler) Pfeffer on April 25, 1930. She joined older siblings Esther (1919), Gladys (1920), Edna (1921), Edgar (1923), Viola (1924), Dorothy (1926), Gordon (1927) and welcomed younger brother Aaron in 1934. The Pfeffer family resided in Bentinck Township where they mixed farmed (sheep and cattle).
Alma attended Howie School (S.S. #7) in Bentinck. Upon completion of school she returned home to help on the farm. Being the second youngest of nine meant that many of Alma's siblings had moved out of the house and there was much to help her parents with. The Pfeffer family attended St. John's Lutheran Church in Elmwood where Alma was confirmed on March 25, 1945.
Alma's brother, Edgar, worked off the farm alongside a man by the name of Hilton Charles Lang. In time, Alma was introduced to Hilt and their relationship soon blossomed. The young couple soon began to date and were married by Rev. Gruhn at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Elmwood on June 9, 1951.
The newlyweds made brief stops in Kitchener and Durham, before purchasing the Lang homestead from Hilt's parents. They soon welcomed sons, Steven in 1952, Michael in 1958 and David in 1961. Living and making a livelihood on the farm was not easy in those days. In addition to raising her young family, Alma would often be out helping Hilt whenever she could. They had a large apple orchard, so countless hours were spent out collecting McIntoshs. Fresh apples in the house meant lots of fresh baking with Apple Pie being one of Alma's specialties.
Alma loved her boys dearly, however, she also ran a tight ship. Boys will be boys, and there were more than a couple of occasions where they would test their mother :). A few stories were told of times whereby Mom sent one (or more) of the boys to bed without dinner. The intention of this act was not to be mean, but instead teach her young sons a lesson and instill values. Another one to mention is when Alma was caught by her nephew mixing powered milk and real milk together, she knew the boys would never drink the milk this way if they knew. So for the past fifty years it’s been their little secret, never told until now. All the boys fondly remember Alma's baking, particularly her butter tarts, pistachio squares and apple pie, however, no birthday was ever complete without a birthday cake prepared by Mom with love.
On Thanksgiving Day in 1967, tragedy struck and the Lang's lost their barn to a fire. The community gathered around them, hosting a barn dance to support their rebuild. This act of love remained with Alma for the remainder of her life as she would do anything to give back to her local community. Maybe she donated one of her knitted creations or supplied a function with some of her famous scalloped potatoes, no matter what the request, she was always willing to step up and help where she could.
Alma's faith was also very important to her. She, Hilt and the boys were regulars at Faith Lutheran Church in Desboro over the years and she was actively involved with the ladies auxiliary and seniors group, as treasurer, to name a few. Alma was also a long-time member of the Chatsworth Legion. One also can't forget to mention the Desboro Fair. This one weekend of the year was also near and dear to Alma. She always had a variety of entries and loved visiting with friends and family. When one fair ended, the next day she began preparing for next years fair. The yearly family reunion was a special event for mom. She started calling us six months in advance to make sure we were all attending, already having what she was bringing planned.
In her spare time Alma enjoyed watching a few particularly favourite TV shows over the years. If it was a Soap it had to be The Edge of Night or The Young & the Restless, and Sunday evenings were devoted to Heartland! Alma also spent countless hours reading her Bible, playing euchre and cribbage.
Alma and Hilt sold the farm to Michael in the late 80’s and they moved into Desboro with Steve. Here they enjoyed themselves as life slowed down and they were able to spend more time with their children and grandchildren. Knitting, quilting, cooking and baking were other tasks that filled her days. She remained active within the community and always helped out when there was a need. Alma was a true pillar of the Desboro community and was always willing to help with a smile on her face.
Life forever changed for Alma on May 20, 2018 when she suffered a severe Stroke. She was left paralyzed on the right side and unable to return home. In time, she became a resident of Lee Manor in Owen Sound were friends and family visited and cared for her needs, as she had done for them in the past. Sadly, she passed away on Wednesday, January 2, 2019 at the age of 88.
Loving mother of Steven, Michael (Maureen), all of Desboro and David (Francine) of Cambridge. Cherished grandmother of Chanene, Sonia, Judiane (Tim), Mitchel (Katie), Matthew (Stephanie), Jacinda and great-grandmother of Jack, Skylar, Shamar, Elijah, Easton and Zaydie. Alma will be missed by her brother Aaron (Marg) Pfeffer of St. Catharines and sister-in-law Shirley Lang of Desboro. She was predeceased by her husband Hilton (2009), sisters Esther Ruthven, Gladys Haskett, Edna Russwurm, Viola Chalmers, Dorothy Klager, brothers Edgar, Gordon and her parents Jacob and Emma Pfeffer.
Visitation will be held at Rhody Family Funeral Home, Chesley on Tuesday from 2 - 4 and 7 - 9 p.m. A funeral service will be held at Faith Lutheran Church, Desboro on Wednesday, January 9, 2019 at 1 p.m. with visiting one hour prior to the service. Interment in Faith Lutheran Cemetery, Desboro.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations to Faith Lutheran Church or Lutheran Hour would be appreciated as expressions of sympathy.Send to friend