We Remember

ELDRIDGE, Phyllis Merle

April 18, 2024 — April 18, 2024

Merle Eldridge was born April 2, 1922 in Kelvington, Saskatchewan, the daughter of Peter and Nettie Prouse. She grew up on a prairie homestead with her parents and seven brothers and sisters. She earned her teaching certificate and at age 18 started her teaching career, teaching in one-room rural schools in Saskatchewan, Alberta, and British Columbia. In 1950, she met Ben Eldridge, who had moved to Saskatchewan from Nova Scotia, at a Cow and Calf Show. Ben said people told him he needed to meet “the new teacher” and when he saw her walk into the barn with the sun behind her, well . . . that was the start of a love that lasted 70 years and will not end. They were married on December 1, 1951. Over the next 15 years, they moved west, finally arriving in Kelowna, B.C. in 1966. During those years, they had five children – Gloria (husband, Jim Fitterling), Karen (husband, Melvin Campbell), Terry (wife, Laurie Eldridge), Nancy (husband, Patrick Lerner), and Gayle (husband, Garry Klammer). They were blessed with ten grandchildren: Ben, Melvin, and Mathew Campbell, Leigh and Dale Eldridge, Katie and Ava Lerner, Lauren and Darrell Klammer, and Noah Lerner, who went before Merle into heaven in February 1998. Merle and Ben also have four great-grandchildren. Merle loved Ben, their family, traveling and vacations with the family, horses and riding, gardening and baking, sewing and knitting. She loved spending time at the cabin with the family and was cross-country skiing, snow-shoeing, and making snow angels well into her 90s. She lived a life filled with love for family and friends, a life filled with generosity and kindness, a life filled with laughter and fun. Everyone who knew her felt the warmth of her radiant smile and carries that in memory. She died peacefully on December 1, 2019, their 68th wedding anniversary, surrounded by family and love. The family thanks the staff at the Village at Mill Creek for their love and tender care for Merle and their concern and consideration for Ben. A private memorial service has already taken place. If you wish to send a condolence, post photos or share a memory, please scroll down the page to the area called “Condolences”.

A private memorial service has already taken place.

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