GOEBEL, Clara Jean Esther
December 9, 1914 - August 11, 2013
Jean, as she preferred to be called, was a multidimensional person. She was a wife, mother, athlete, pioneer, artist and so much more. Jean had a zest for life. She was born in North Edmonton, and graduated from Edmonton's Alberta College. After graduation, it was impossible to get a job without experience. Jean worked for free to get that experience, and with that experience became one of the first Alberta government IBM computer programmers. Her accomplishments in this area and others enabled her to help finance the university educations of her twin sister, Ruth (deceased), and her elder sister Elizabeth (deceased). Jean's work did not prevent her from enjoying her many athletic endeavors. In the 1930s she was an avid bobsledder, and was still cross-country skiing in her early 80's. In addition, Jean was a member of the first organized synchronized swimming team in Calgary, as well as a lifeguard and swim instructor at the Family YMCA. Dancing of all kinds was a passion for Jean whether it was old time dancing with the Calgary Gliders, or Square dancing at the 1988 Calgary Olympic Games Opening Ceremonies. Travelling was another passion. Jean and her husband Arie (who predeceased her in 2005), travelled the world, from the wilds of Africa to Australia and New Zealand as well as just about everywhere in between. Jean and Arie belonged to the Alberta/Saskatchewan Airstream unit, and took their beloved trailer through most of North America. If Jean was not travelling, she was in her garden or kitchen. She loved nothing better than her homegrown flowers, vegetables and berries. During the summer, meals always included something fresh from the garden - beans, peas, beets or a salad with her special homemade dressing. As soon as fall was imminent, out came the canning equipment and pickled beets, canned vegetables and mouth-watering jams, jellies and preserves were prepared. Jean's rhubarb and raisin marmalade was especially prized by those fortunate enough to have a taste or even a bottle of it. Jean did not think of herself as an artist, but anyone who saw her quilts or ceramics could argue with that. Jean was a life member of the Northern Alberta Pioneer & Descendants Association. Jean will be sorely missed by her family, sons; Howard (Judith), James (Deborah), daughter; Jeannie (Wayne) Jeffrey, grandchildren; Rik, Lisa, Scott and Neil and 9 great-grandchildren. In addition many old and new friends will mark her passing. A special thank you from the family, to Susan Bristow who went above and beyond for Jean in the past few years. If there is one phrase that could sum up the way Jean approached life it was "JOIE DE VIVRE". No memorial service will be held. An interment will be held at the Evergreen Memorial Gardens in Edmonton, Alberta in accordance with Jean's wishes. Expressions of sympathy may be forwarded to the family via the website www.fostersgardenchapel.ca. FOSTER'S GARDEN CHAPEL FUNERAL HOME AND CREMATORIUM Telephone: 403-297-0888. Honoured Provider of Dignity Memorial.
Published in The Calgary Herald on Aug. 14, 2013