September 23, 1928 - January 1, 2021
Alexander Gottfried, also known as Alec, Dad, Grandpa Jean, Grandpa, Gramps, Pops, and Old Grandpa, was born September 23rd, 1928, on their family homestead. He was one of five children and the oldest son of Karl and Katherina Gottfried. Grandpa’s mom died when he was only five years old so he and his siblings had to grow up fast in order to help out their father on the farm. Grandpa started school not knowing a word of English as his parents only spoke German, he often told stories of how they had to travel to school by horse and buggy. Grandpa’s love for farming started at an early age and he was able to start his full time farming career after he finished his 8th grade of school. Fast forward a few years… Grandpa met the love of his life Jean Body at a dance in Luseland, when we asked Grandma if it was love at first sight she said “oh yes”. When they were first dating Grandpa would pick up Grandma in his black car with a homemade Hollywood tailpipe. Grandma said he would like to step on the gas and the muffler would get loud and vibrate. He must have impressed Grandma because they were married within the year. Together they started a beautiful life and had 3 children, Lorne, Glen, and Della. Their family has continued to grow and now consists of 7 grandchildren, and 7 great grandchildren with another one on the way this year. Grandpa was able to pass on his love of farming to both his sons and grandsons, he instilled the value of hard work, determination, diversity, optimism, and the ability to work well with others. As exemplified by the family operation he started that is still running today. Grandpa was able to help his Grandsons get started in many different agricultural avenues as they grew up including cows, pigs, chickens, turkeys, and potatoes to name a few. Grandpa always encouraged them to work hard, try new things, and not have all their eggs in one basket. Grandpa worked long hours but always said if you love what you're doing you never have to work a day in your life. He was a very hard working man but enjoyed taking Sundays off. Sundays were for a day of rest, a day to give thanks, to go to church, or spend a day with his family. Many Sundays were spent traveling as a family to Gravel Lake to enjoy some sand and sun. Grandma and Grandpa shared a love for gardening, he was always eager to have a proper shelter-belt around their farm yard, and was somewhat of an expert when it came to planting trees, pushing down trees in sloughs, and weed control. One of Grandpa’s favourite jobs on the farm was swathing, he was always eager to help but once he turned about 60 he decided he was no longer going to grease the machinery, he said, “I’ll sit in the tractor but someone else can grease.” Although Grandpa was 92 years old, he never stopped working around the farm, he was always willing to help out wherever, whenever. He often helped out in ways that sometimes got him into some trouble, for example, when he found tools or projects on the go around the shop he took the liberty to put these items away, most often before the project was done. Unfortunately Grandpa’s memory wasn’t always the best and he couldn’t quite remember where he put some of those items. Grandpa also took care of burning the garbage almost daily; however, that task got him into some trouble one day when he was burning a pile of junk by the corals. The wind happened to be a little stronger than Grandpa thought and that little fire turned into a pretty big fire, resulting in a bit of panic and the Luseland Fire Department being called. Grandpa said ‘we don’t have to tell Grandma about this one’. After that little mishap, the torch was kept in the shop fridge to ensure the whole farm didn’t go up in flames. One last memory that would make Grandpa laugh involved some grain samples. Grandpa, again, just trying to tidy up, took a variety of small grain samples that were being stored in one of the garages, combined them together into one big pail and dumped it all in the trough for the cows. He wasn’t very popular when all the samples needed to be recollected, but shortly after it was laughed about. The best part was that Grandpa enjoyed laughing at these mishaps as much as we did. Grandpa’s smile could light up a room and his personality matched that big, beautiful, smile. He could visit with anyone about anything, but his favourite topics were farming or his family. Grandpa was the biggest jokester around, often telling some rather inappropriate jokes, especially to the grandsons in the shop. As Grandpa got older his filter became almost nonexistent and the boys didn’t mind it one bit. He’d usually follow a dirty joke with “don’t tell Grandma that one”, with a perfect chuckle to follow. His laughter and smile was so contagious and is sure to be missed by everyone. Grandpa was also very community minded, he served as the Reeve of the RM of Progress, he sat on the school board, and was a contributing committee member for the conception and construction of both the Luseland Community Motel and The Luseland/Salvador Homecoming Hall. Grandpa was a very generous man, and was always willing to help someone in need. He was the type of guy who would give you the shirt off his back. Grandpa enjoyed singing and dancing, he and Grandma enjoyed going square dancing as often as they could and met many friends by doing so. They enjoyed many card games tournaments over the years with all sorts of family and friends; including, Tom, Raymond and Bernice, John and Joyce, Jack and Carol, Carol and Eugene, and Dale and Donna, to name a few. He was a quick learner and could play Kaiser with Kim and Fred like an old pro. Another game they thoroughly enjoyed with friends was scrabble. Their daughter Della has played a record breaking amount of times with them, and Auntie said Grandpa even won a few games when she was out for her most recent visit, which was the day before Grandpa died. It seemed Grandpa’s soul purpose in life was to make Grandma happy. He was also really good at being told what to do, and seemed to do just about anything he was asked if it would make Grandma happy. For example, when constructing the outdoor pond area, Grandpa hauled in a nice big rock that Grandma liked; however, after it was placed and the project was nearly complete, Grandma sat down in her chair and couldn’t quite see the rock like she had hoped, instead of the easy option to simply move Grandma’s chair, she requested him to move that big rock.. and without hesitation Grandpa moved that rock just where she wanted it. As the years went on and Grandpa got older he found himself being dragged along on all the Christmas shopping trips with Della and the granddaughters. This often involved a hotel stay in the city for the weekend, pedicures, movies (which he often slept through), and long shopping days. Shopping wasn’t one of Grandpa’s favourite activities but he would never complain, he was so patient, he’d always have a smile on his face, a few good jokes, and he’d end the day by taking us all out for supper! Grandpa was also very well traveled; he and Grandma enjoyed many vacations around the world including Carribean holidays, exploring The Netherlands, wintering in Hawaii, adventures Down Under, road tripping through Alaska, and sailing around the world - including a cruise across the Atlantic Ocean, just to name a few. The granddaughters were fortunate enough to tag along for a couple Hawaiian vacations, and in recent years, some of the family were able to enjoy a couple Mexican vacations with them as well. Whenever travelling, if Grandpa ever saw a train, big or small, he’d always say “that’s the longest train I’ve ever seen”. Even after all his worldly travels, Grandpa’s favourite destination was SW22-36-25W3, his homestead quarter, his favourite place on the planet; the farm where he was born and where he found his final resting place. He often said his heaven was right here on earth. Grandpa’s perfect day would consist of being with Grandma and watching the sun rise, getting in his daily 1 mile walk on the treadmill, a visit with family, tinkering in the shop and visiting the boys, any type of card game, a drive to check up on the crops or farming operations, some farm talk, and watching the 11 o’clock news with Grandma before going to bed. He was a man of many talents, one of our favourites being his ability to blow up his bicep muscle like a balloon; even though that balloon had deflated quite a bit in the latter years he always put on quite the show for the grandkids. Grandpa was an amazing man, a wonderful husband, father and friend. He loved farming, he loved his family, and he loved his wife more than anything. We will miss his big, beautiful smile, his laughter, his love, hugs, jokes, and his presence. We love you so much Grandpa. Until we meet again.
Due to Covid-19 restrictions, there will be a private family service. For those who would like to watch the service, the family will provide a recording please view on livestream link.
Those wishing to make donations in memory of Alex may do so to the Luseland Swimming Pool Memorial Fund, C/O the Luseland Credit Union.
To send flowers to Alexander "Alex" Gottfried's family, please visit our floral store.