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Obituaries

HARRY REISS

On Monday, July 3, 2023, at home, after a short illness, Harry Reiss passed away at the age of 93. He was the beloved husband of 55 years to Vicky Reiss (Shumsky), who predeceased
him, as did his parents, Ira and Raizel Reiss. He is survived by his children, Jeffrey, wife Marlis,
grandchildren Sheena, Anita, and Leanna; Alan; and Ken, wife Sonya, grandchildren
Chloe, Noah, and Charlie; younger siblings, Sam Reiss, Edward Reiss, and Ida Alpern; and his partner Honey Kowall.
Harry was born in Dunajow, Poland and escaped at age nine with his immediate family due to the growing threat of war and the Holocaust. They left Poland on the “Alaunia” of the Cunard White Star Line, eventually arriving in Halifax on April 16, 1939, then arriving by train to Winnipeg on April 19th, proceeding to Brooksby, Saskatchewan, before eventually settling on a farmstead in Edenbridge, SK, where Harry went to school and helped out on the farm. At age seventeen, due to financial reasons, Harry needed to leave school to find work and arrived in Winnipeg, working 70-hour weeks in a fur coat factory. In 1951, he went to New York City where he stayed with relatives to attend a 6-month course in Fur Designing & Fur Cutting at the Sol Vogel School of Designing. Upon his return to Winnipeg, Harry started his own business in the basement of his parents’ house (who had moved to Wpg. with his siblings earlier that year), sewing patterns and selling fur coats to department stores, in addition to bringing his father, uncle Joe, and brother Sam into the venture. Later, the business expanded first to James St. and later to the Bedford Building on McDermot & King, where it remained thereafter and known as Reiss Furs, engaged in both wholesale and retail sales. Over the years, Harry and his partner Sam, developed an extremely successful enterprise, becoming the largest furrier business in Western Canada, renowned for their high-end garments, with international celebrities and royalty amoungst their clientele. Indeed, they were the last independent furrier in Winnipeg, as eventually the marketplace was changing with less demand for fur coats. Ever the astute businessman, Harry had evolved the business into additionally involving retail sales of high-quality non-fur winter wear, as well as men’s and women’s fashion for some time. In the latter half of his career, Harry successfully expanded into the area of property management, acquiring a number of downtown Winnipeg buildings and parking lots. He continued with property management after the closing of his retail operations in 2008 and “semi-retiring” at nearly eighty years of age.
Harry started to date Vicky in 1956, with them marrying the following year. They enjoyed many happy years together, socializing with family and friends, and in later years looking forward to their winter vacations in Florida. Tragically, Vicky passed away after a brief illness in 2012, at the age of only 73. Fortunately for Harry, over the passage of years he developed a close relationship with Honey Kowall, leading to the two of them ultimately living together, and with him being warmly accepted into the Kowall family.
The family wishes to extend their gratitude for the compassionate care given to Harry by the healthcare-aides who assisted him in his later days, as well as the longstanding service of Judy Hansen.
Funeral services, officiated by Rabbi Kliel Rose, were held at the Rosh Pina Memorial Park on Wednesday, July 5, 2023.

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Obituaries

ANNE JACOBSON January 25, 1917 – March 4, 2024

On March 4, 2024, our mama, grandma, and great-grandma left this world at the age of 107.

Anne was born in Boston, Mass. to Harry and Rose Urdang. In 1923, the family moved to Winnipeg and resided at 420 Manitoba Ave. and then 358 Pritchard Ave. She attended the University of Manitoba and was planning to become a dietician. Those plans were derailed when her father died of leukemia at the age of 42.

Anne started a small hairdressing business in her home to help support her mother and sisters. Later she worked as a buyer for Green Brothers, a dress wholesaler.

Anne met Nate when he was with the RAF, stationed in Winnipeg. They were married at the Marlborough Hotel New Years Eve, 1945. In 1950, they moved to Rupertsland Ave. where they raised Arlene and Gary. They were an integral part of the neighbourhood and made many lifelong friends. She and Nate were charter members of the Rupertsland bridge group and Anne eventually attained the designation of Life Master.

Anne was involved with ORT (Organization for Rehabilitation through Training) and served as president of the north end B’Nai Brith Chapter. She enjoyed working with people, and had fond memories of her job in the jewellery department at Clark’s and later as a hostess at Genser’s furniture.

Although Anne was unable to pursue her goal of becoming a dietician, she continued to pursue her interest in food and nutrition and was an excellent cook and baker. Her apple and blueberry pies are fondly remembered by all her family.

Nate passed away in 1996. Anne, being the independent woman that she was, continued to live on Rupertsland until 2006 when, after a brief stay at The Bolton, she moved to the Simkin Centre in 2007. While at the Simkin, she took up Scrabble and over the years she and Gary enjoyed many games, most of which – even into her late ‘90s – she won.
Anne was predeceased by her two sisters, Evelyn Schmitt (2014) and Beattie (Kraven) (2021). She leaves behind daughter Arlene McMahon of Burlington, son Gary Jacobson (Ricki) of Winnipeg, granddaughter Tamsin McMahon (Scott Whitley) of California, grandson Jamie McMahon (Anna Nelson) of Thunder Bay, grandsons Dan Jacobson of Vancouver and Noah Jacobon (Vienna Luong) of Winnipeg and great-granddaughters Maren and Karine McMahon.

Funeral services were held at the Chesed Shel Emes funeral home on March 8, 2024. Thank you to pallbearers Noah Jacobson, Daniel Jacobson, Adam Spigelman, Murray Greenfield, Robbie Waldman,and Avrom Charach. The family would also like to thank Cantor Tracy Kasner for a beautiful eulogy and service. If desired, donations in Anne’s memory can be made to a charity of one’s choice.

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Obituaries

DR. MONTE HOWARD KOWALL November 9, 1928 – April 17, 2024

He will be dearly missed by his wife of almost 68 years, Cecile (nee Pollock); children, Pamela (Gary Brooker), Paul (DD), Feryn and Sheri (Robbie Weisz); grandchildren, Alana (Matt Joudrey), Ivy, Rachel, Sarah, Lainey, Nayce and Sienna.

Monte grew up with his older brother Bernard in the North End of Winnipeg. He attended school at Machray, St. John’s and the University of Manitoba where he received his medical degree. After completing specialty training in Boston, MA, he established his pediatric practice, first at the Mall Medical Clinic and then in the Boyd Building, enjoying a rewarding 45 year career. He served on staff at several hospitals and volunteered decades of service to the St. Amant Centre, Cerebral Palsy Association, Mount Carmel Clinic and in northern Manitoba at Indian Lake and Norway House. Monte and wife Cecile were very involved in their synagogue, Herzlia-Adas Yeshurun. Monte also had many hobbies. He was an avid reader, stamp collector, culinary expert, gardener and handyman. Most of all he enjoyed being with family and friends and truly enjoyed the special times with his grandchildren and his many nieces and nephews.

Monte and Cecile travelled to many destinations including Italy, Russia, Hawaii, Mexico, Dominican Republic, California and Florida. Monte really enjoyed the lake at Winnipeg Beach where he and Cecile eventually decided to reside during the summers, while wintering in Margate, Florida.

Monte enjoyed life and was blessed to have remained in his own home until his last day. He lived with dignity and humility and will always be remembered by the many patients he cared for over the years, as well as by his loving family and many friends.

Funeral services were held on April 21, 2024, at the Shaarey Zedek Cemetery. Pallbearers were Martin Pollock, Ethan Pollock, Jayden Pollock, Charles Morris, Liam Pollock and Harlan Morris. The family would like to extend their heartfelt appreciation to dedicated caregivers, Nelly, Eddie, Marietta, Ann, Connie and Gizelle for the kind, caring and respectful manner in which they attended to our father over the last few years.

Donations may be made to the Monte and Cecile Kowall Fund at the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba or to a charity of your choice.

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Obituaries

BETTY ANN SEARLE (nee PRESSMAN)

Born – April 16, 1937 Passed Away – April 14, 2024

With broken hearts, we share the news of the unexpected, but peaceful, death of our dear mother, Betty Ann Searle, on April 14, 2024, just shy of her 87th birthday.

Betty is survived by her beloved husband of over 66 years, Samuel (Sam); children Sharna, Lorne (Barbara) and Beverlee (Barry); grandchildren Evan, Aaron, Jamie and Matthew; brother-in-law Garry Shapera; sister-in-law Eve Blank. Many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends will also dearly miss her.

Betty was predeceased by her parents Jack and Sally Pressman, and her only sibling, younger sister and close confidante, Doreen Shapera, as well as by other cherished family members including her sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law.

Born in Brandon, Manitoba, Betty lived in small Manitoba towns, moving to Weyburn, Saskatchewan, in 1948, where her father established Pressman’s Style Shop, a boys’ and men’s clothing store. Possessing evident early charm and people skills, Betty would bring a daily hot lunch to her father and mind the store while he ate. Later, she became her high school’s first female student council president.

Betty moved to Winnipeg in 1955 and soon met Sam at the Good Earth Restaurant, a popular hangout for young Jewish adults. They married in 1957 and a few years later settled into the house designed by Sam in Winnipeg’s North End. When the kids were a little older, Betty obtained an Early Childhood Education certificate from Red River Community College, worked at Peretz and Ramah schools, and became an active community volunteer. Among several positions, she served as Winnipeg Section president of the National Council of Jewish Women of Canada and manager of Art Rental and Sales at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. In later years, she remained peripherally involved with NCJWC and sat on the WAG’s advisory and foundation committees. In 1985, Betty graduated from the University of Winnipeg with a degree in economics and art history, landing a job as an account executive immediately thereafter.

Betty transformed the beautiful house Sam designed for them into a warm and welcoming home. With impeccable taste and a flair for fashion, mom, the quintessential hostess, entertained friends and family with style and good humour year-round. Betty also loved exploring the world. Her travels with Sam, and often with the whole family, included North American camping trips and ski holidays, adventures in Europe, China, Cuba, Israel, the Caribbean and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, the latter becoming “home base” for several weeks every winter for 20 years. Closer to home, mom loved residing at the family cottage in Loni Beach (Gimli), MB, for July and August each year.

Betty and Sam shared a rich, cultural life in Winnipeg. They had season tickets to “everything”: symphony, opera, chamber music, theatre, ballet, jazz. Also passionate about family, mom keenly understood the importance of staying connected and taking the time to celebrate as many simchas together as possible, crisscrossing Canada and the United States to enjoy myriad milestone occasions with extended family. The same can be said regarding Betty’s lifelong friends.

Mom’s ultimate delight was the unbridled joy she experienced being with her grandchildren. Bobbie Betty couldn’t get enough of them and spared no expense to see them as often as possible. Toronto became a regular destination and the Gimli cottage became “grandchildren central” for several weeks each summer. She was an involved, interested Bobbie, and her grandchildren loved sharing the special times in their lives with her.

Betty passed away peacefully at the Seven Oaks General Hospital. We are grateful for the kindness and dignity with which the staff treated her. A heartfelt thank you, as well, to Sam’s wonderful care team at the house – Sharon, Violeta, Naomi, Jamie, Cheryl – for providing loving support to both dad and mom.

The graveside funeral service was held on April 17, 2024, at the Rosh Pina Memorial Park, warmly officiated by Rabbi Kliel Rose. The pallbearers were grandsons Evan Searle and Matthew Pearl, son-in-law Barry Pearl, cousin Selma Gilfix, great-niece Amy Braunstein and devoted nephew David Shapera.

Donations may be made to the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba’s “Betty Ann Searle Memorial Fund” or to a charitable organization supporting Winnipeg’s arts community.

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