Shirley Haskins

Obituary of Shirley Elieta Haskins

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Shirley Haskins

1929 - 2024

Mom was born at St. Paul’s Hospital August 9, 1929 and she passed away at St. Paul’s Hospital March 13, 2024.

Her parents, Laureen and Carl Koester were poor and sometimes the family did not have much. Mom remembers having lard and brown sugar sandwiches in her lunch. Her Mom had to take in laundry and do housework to keep the family afloat as jobs were scarce in the 1930’s. Life improved for them when Laureen took a job as a housekeeper for a bachelor farmer and they at least had food to eat and a roof over their heads. Mom went to Saskatoon Technical Collegiate and after high school she went to work for an architect. She remembers running off and collating thousands of pages of specifications by hand.

Literally picking her up off the ice, Dad met Mom at a skating rink in 1948. They were married in 1949 and went to Moose Jaw for their wedding night where they stayed at the Grant Hall Hotel for $6.50 per night. From there they drove on to Boston, Massachusetts and later to Ontario to meet Dad’s parents. Last year Mom and Susan made a trip to Moose Jaw and stayed at the Grant Hall, possibly in the exact same room but not for $6.50!

Mom was a stay-at-home Mom. She cooked and cleaned as most moms do but I think she liked the socializing with the neighbourhood ladies the best. Very special to her was the Monday
afternoon Bridge Club which ran for 40 years with basically the same members. She loved to sew and actually worked for a time at the Stretch Sewing Centre. She spent most of her wages on more fabric, patterns and notions. Mom spent many winters curling but her real love was golf. She had an amazing group of friends she played with at Moon Lake 3 or 4 times per week. She often played with her sister Carol and brother-in-law Jim. Mom and Carol were very close sisters and friends and after Dad and Jim passed away, Carol came to live with Mom until she also passed away. Mom was devastated at the loss of her sister and best friend.

Mom and Dad did a fair bit of traveling - the UK, Germany, Switzerland, Australia, the South Pacific. After Dad passed, we went to the UK and Holland on a fact-finding mission. Then Mom and Susan had a few opportunities to travel to Australia, Italy, the Caribbean, Mexico and to the west coast. After she was unable to travel, Mom really enjoyed following everyone’s trips by pictures and stories posted on Facebook.

Always making friends easily, Mom would always be the first one to take a pie or other baked goods or a casserole to someone who was sick or grieving the loss of a loved one. She had the same compassionate heart when baking gave way to sending flowers for the same reasons. She donated to a lot of different charities but her favourites were those that helped children or folks in the Saskatoon area. One of Mom’s favourite pastimes was knitting. When younger, she knit beautiful sweaters. When following the pattern became more difficult, she knit mittens, hundreds of mittens, most of which went to inner city schools, Hands on Ministries, The Bridge and
family members. Heather remembers giving each student in her classroom a pair of mittens as a gift. One Mom told her that her son was so thrilled with his, that he wore them all day at home.

Mom entered the hospital February 17 when she found herself struggling to breathe. She was there for 3.5 weeks and we, as her children were given just a bit more time to come to terms with her passing. She didn’t want to be there and didn’t understand why she just couldn’t go but it was not her time. She died in her sleep just as she always wanted. The staff at St. Paul’s were wonderful – so caring and we commend them – its not an easy task. Susan finds herself wanting to call and talk to her to tell her that we miss her and that we are heartbroken. We are so fortunate to know someone who made saying goodbye so hard.

Shirley leaves to mourn her children: Jim (Nancy), Susan (Walter), Sarah (Laura), grandchildren: Karen, Dennis, Heather, Vicky, Bruce, Reg, Pam, Ellie, Sam, her great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren. Thank you to all her precious friends who enriched her life by your love and friendship.

A Celebration of Life will take place on March 21, 2024 at 1:30pm, West Portal Church at 3134 33rd St W in Saskatoon. 


Some remembrances (not to be included with eulogy but after with tributes):

Vicky remembers Sunday night suppers and the “No drinking until after 5” clock on the basement wall.

Bruce has something to share.

Karen remembers going for Denver sandwiches at th King George Hotel and to musicals and ballets with Grandma. She also remembers the homemade mittens.



Heather remembers spending the weekend at Grandma’s and deciding all she wanted to play was Rummy. For her own sanity, Grandma made a deal with her that for every so many games of Rummy, they would play a game of Scrabble.

Pam cherishes all the time she and Grandma got to spend together over the last few years


Celebration of Life

1:30 pm
Thursday, March 21, 2024
West Portal Mennonite Church
3134 33rd St W
Saskatoon , Saskatchewan, Canada
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