August 25, 2022
Sonia Marjorie Lehrle (Duck) passed away one day shy of her 92nd birthday on August 25, 2022. Mom grew up on a cattle ranch purchased by her grandparents in 1901. During The Depression, early ranch life meant sharing a home with cousins, it was not unusual to have 18 people at the table for meals.
There were so many children that a teacher was added to the household, saving a long trek to the schoolhouse. Sonia learned the art of sewing from an Aunt, taught to drive at 9 years old and shared a bed with her sister Shirley, and, to her passing, was careful not to roll over and disturb her. Early June 1945, Sonia’s father, having been away for 6 years, returned home from war. Mom recalled how her family set out at 4 a.m., walking about a mile to the railroad station where they waited to see him step down from the train. It was an unbelievable moment for a 12, 15, and 17 year old. They went to a hotel where the adults had a drink, and then took a taxi home. It was Sonia’s first time in a taxi! The ranch, no longer owned by family, is located in Holmwood between Monte Lake and Barnhartvale (Kamloops).
In 1953, Mom married my Dad, Bill Lehrle, had two children: Garth and Vashti. In 1975, the loss of Garth, a Bush Pilot in Prince Rupert, took a toll on Mom and their marriage. Thankfully her creative talents, sewing, knitting, embroidery, and painting, brought her peace. In our Tsawwassen home, with a hammer in hand, Mom displayed her ingenuity, determination, and independence by building a large bar in the family room. I am sure this is where I learned to swear.
Mom enjoyed long walks, coffee at Donna’s Rocky Mountain Café followed by games of Bridge. Oh my gosh! She loved Bridge. She also loved her son-in-law Terry Lawrence for his big Sunday night dinners making sure she had her favourites.
Sonia was “Abba” to her Grandchildren, Devon and Britt Lawrence (Joel Formosa). Her last week, Mom captured their imagination with all her stories. Luckily enough, she attained the status of Great Grandma to Austin Dawson Lawrence and little Brady Formosa.
A warm family atmosphere was created at The Views in Comox, Mom’s home for 3 years. Our thanks to all who cared for and respected her. You all made it enjoyable to visit.
Mom was a true British Columbian, but the Kamloops ranch was her heart. She will join the family at Holmwood Cemetery. Predeceased by son Garth, parents Arthur and Martha Duck, and siblings Shirley Jaron and Ian Duck.
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