Evelyn Rheaume

Obituary of Evelyn Alexina Rheaume

November 21, 1937 – Roblin, Manitoba

March 20, 2024 – Calgary, Alberta


Evelyn Rheaume (nee Beattie), previously of Portage la Prairie, MB, and beloved wife of the late Charles “Bud” Rheaume, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, March 20, 2024, at the age of 86 years in Calgary, AB.


Evelyn was born in Roblin, MB, on November 21, 1937, and raised on a farm near Makaroff, MB. She recounted many fond memories of growing up with her family and often reflected on those days and how happy she was.


Mom obtained her Teaching Certificate at what was then called “Normal School” in Winnipeg and began her career, teaching in various small towns in one-room schoolhouses. She continued on to Calgary, Flin Flon, and then Minnedosa, where she met Bud, whom she eventually married, and together, they moved to Portage in 1964.


She taught at Portage Collegiate Institute for two years, then stayed home to raise her family, returning later to substitute teach for several years in elementary and junior high school. When the opportunity to teach Conversational French was introduced, mom applied to be the French teacher at Crescentview School.


She threw all her creativity into making the classroom a fun learning environment. She spent a summer in Trois Riviere, QC, by boarding with a French-speaking family to accelerate her fluency, all while attending classes. At CVS, she often welcomed French Moniterisse students into her home who came to assist in her French classes and in return, improve their English. Madame Rheaume was very passionate about making education a fun and creative adventure for all her students!


Mom loved to be involved in the community and did so in many ways. She was the face of the Terry Fox Run for twenty years and volunteered for numerous charities, such as Meals on Wheels, Grandmother’s Giving, and MCC, to name a few.


As an active member of several sports clubs, she often served on their Executive, from Secretary to President. Most notably with Portage Curling Club, golf, and tennis clubs respectively. Another area of community involvement was The Lioness Club and Unit “C” at Trinity United Church.


Mom’s accomplishments were many but scoring an 8-Ender in curling with Dad was unique and special to her. Their plaques were humbly displayed in the basement next to their other trophies.


Her home passions were music (whether listening to it or playing the piano and guitar), gardening, flower arranging, decorating for any occasion, and shopping for deals (clothing sales being her specialty). She crocheted, knitted blankets, and sewed numerous outfits for all kinds of occasions.


Her curiosity to keep learning sent her on travel adventures. From Japan and Thailand to Russia, Hawaii, and the Bahamas, she tried to see as much as possible with the friends who invited her along. A special trip was when she was able to return with her family to Britain, Scotland, France, and Switzerland to revisit some of the special places she had gone with Dad on their honeymoon.


Evie had an incredible kindness, generosity, sense of humour, and mostly a love for the simple pleasures in life. Her happy outlook and ability to laugh at herself are some of the endearing qualities we hope she’ll be remembered for. Her motto was “Do unto others as they would do to you”. She faithfully believed in those words and lived her life by them.


There were many highlights in her life, but mom was particularly proud of her ability to help others in their time of need. She tirelessly cared for her extended family through sudden loss, to longstanding health issues, supporting them in any way she could. New refugees were welcomed, homes set up and provided with her support as they adapted to life in Canada. She never turned down a request for help in the community. From fundraising to baking or planting community gardens, she loved to be involved in the betterment of a cause.


She thrived on a full social life, which included hosting family/company or anyone who just wanted to pop in and say hello. Many visitors came and signed the Guest Book over the years.


Evelyn was predeceased by her loving husband Bud, and beloved sisters Wilma Cowling, Roberta Kasprick, and Jean Beattie. She is survived by her daughters Rita Gaye of Calgary and Louise Rheaume (Nathan Epp) of Airdrie.


Evelyn also leaves behind her brother Douglas Beattie of Roblin, MB, special niece Diane (Brian) Tkachuk of Calgary, special nephew Gilbert (Marlene) Robinson of Fannystelle, MB, and many cherished family members from Cowlings, Kaspricks, to Premachuk and Rheaume clans. She had a special love for the children of her nieces and nephews, who brought her so much joy.


Finally, an honourable mention to long-time friends who provided endless love and support to Evie and her daughters as time went by; Wilma (Bill) Shirriff, Grace and Errol Fitzell, Sheila and Hank Ridendeau, Gwen Henwood, Diane and Barry Sadler, Marlene Beattie, and Randy Owens.


If friends so desire, memorial tributes may be made directly to the Terry Fox Foundation, 16A, 6120 – 2nd Street S.E., Calgary, AB T2H 2L8 Telephone: (403) 212-1336, www.terryfox.org/donate or to the Dementia Society of Canada.


A Celebration of Evelyn’s Life will be announced later this year in Portage La Prairie, MB. We hope you will join us to share stories and photos of mom through the years.


Condolences, memories, and photos may be shared and viewed with Evelyn’s family here.


In living memory of Evelyn Rheaume, a tree will be planted in the Ann & Sandy Cross Conservation Area by McInnis & Holloway Funeral Homes, Fish Creek, 14441 Bannister Road SE, Calgary, Ab t2x 3j3, Telephone: 403-256-9575.

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