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Dorothy Evelyn Marie Colley was born March 27, 1938, in Saskatoon. She was the youngest of 4 children born to Mary and Nelson Colley. In 1939 her family moved to the Cater Lake area. This land was unsuitable for farming and the family moved to the Artichoke School District, 12 miles east and north of Glenbush. This is where Dorothy received all of her schooling. She did not particularly like the academic part of school but excelled at sports; winning ribbons and cups in ball, and track and field. In the early 1950s her and her parents moved to Jackfish Lake where she helped her parents manage Poplar Cove Beach.
In 1959 her brother, Norman, brought home one of his coworkers from Ferguson Construction, Roy Hamm. They struck up a romance and were married on July 6, 1961. Dorothy and Roy then worked for Ferguson Construction during the summer months for 5 years. She had many stories to tell of cooking meals for the crew with her sister-in-law, Doris. In the winters they would move their little trailer up alongside a grainary at the Hamm family farm and Dorothy would only have to cook for her own family as Roy worked with his brothers in the bush and on the farm. She continued to live on the farm until after Roy passed away. She then moved into St. Walburg in 2012, and then had to move to the Paradise Hill Care Home in January 2023.
Dorothy is survived by: her 4 children, Ed (Monanne) Martin, Anita (John Opsal) Hamm, Victor (Tanya) Hamm and Karen (Ed Norman) Hamm; 9 grandchildren, Amanda (Damien) Evens, Tessa (Brian) Wallace, Sabrina (Brayden) Meckling, Blair (Michelle) Leonard, Heather (Mark Hofer) Leonard, Shelby (Cole) Meachem, Levi (Mackenzie Nelson) Nichol, Blayne Nichol and Kaitlin (Dawson Cox) Nichol; great grandchildren, Hayden, Cruz, Cole and Keira Evens, Rowan, Talon and Kya Meckling, Bree and Callie Meachem, Merrit, Walker and Maisie Leonard and Eli Hofer; her sister, Louise Haubold; her brother-in-law, Wilfred (Darlene) Hamm; sisters-in-law, Doris Colley, Vivian Colley and Helen (Ray) Brotzel; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
She was predeceased by: her husband of 50 years, Roy; her parents, Mary and Nelson Colley; her brothers, George and Norman Colley; her granddaughter, Kyla (Dallas Sunstrum) Martin; her mother and father-in-law, Julianna and Paul Hamm; her brothers-in-law, Eric Haubold, Leander, Tony and Edward Hamm; her sisters-in-law, Jennie Kahtava and Marie Henning; her niece, Sharon Acker; and her nephews, Darwin Colley, and Roy and Marvin Kahtava.
Eulogy of Dorothy Evelyn Marie Hamm
Written by her daughter Anita Hamm
Dorothy Evelyn Marie Colley was born March 27, 1938, in Saskatoon. She was the youngest of 4 children born to Mary and Nelson Colley. In 1939 her family moved to the Cater Lake area. This land was unsuitable for farming, so the family moved to the Artichoke School District, 12 miles east and north of Glenbush. This is where Dorothy received all of her schooling. She did not particularly like the academic part of school but excelled at sports, winning ribbons and cups in ball and track and field. In the early 1950s her and her parents moved to Jackfish Lake where she helped her parents manage Poplar Cove Beach. After that Mom worked at various jobs such as waitressing, babysitting, and cooking.
Anyone who knew Mom knew she enjoyed a good joke. She loved to tease and be teased: this was her love language. As recently as last week she told me her brothers Norman and George showed her how to do this. She said Norman was the biggest tease. She continued this with her own children and grandchildren. Laughter was always a huge part of any of Mom’s family gatherings.
Her sister Louise and her were not close in age but when I was growing up Mom and Louise seemed like the perfect sisters, always enjoying their time together. In the 1990s Mom had a chance to go on a bus trip with Louise and her sister-in-law Doris to Reno, San Fransico, Victoria and parts in-between. Butchart Gardens were a highlight of this trip. I think she was always trying to create her own private little Butchart Gardens.
In 1959 her brother Norman brought home one of his coworkers from Ferguson Construction, Roy Hamm. They struck up a romance and were married on July 6, 1961. Roy and Dorothy had three children together Anita Marie, Victor James, and Karen Julianna. Dorothy also had a son in 1959 that she had given up for adoption. In October 2020 he, Ed Martin, reached out and they had a beautiful reunion that November. With the addition of Ed and Monanne to her brood this completed her family and brought peace and contentment to her in the last years.
Dorothy and Roy worked for Ferguson Construction during the summer months for 5 years. She had many stories to tell of cooking meals for the crew with her sister-in-law Doris. In the winters they would move their little trailer up alongside a granary at the Hamm family farm and Dorothy would only have to cook for her own family while Roy worked with his brothers in the bush and on the farm. She continued to live on the farm until after Roy passed away.
Early years together were tough, and money was short but hard work and creativity helped them get through. Mom sewed many of our clothes, picked and canned fruits and vegetables, milked cows, cut and wrapped meat, and cooked or baked everything we ate. This meant long hard days of work. She did, however, find time to enjoy life playing games, reading, and crafting. Mom knew the value of hard work and expected us to do our share. She taught us young how to cook and clean, I think this was so we could do the inside work and she could be out in her garden. That being said there are certain foods that Mom cooked that Karen and I have not been able to duplicate, her oven fried steak and porridge were 2 of these. When we came home from school and smelt either fresh bread or doughnuts our mouths would water. A holiday meal was not complete without Grandma’s wheat salad, and not just your normal size bowl but the biggest Tupperware bowl she had.
Mom worked hard to create a home where all were welcome. Her house was not always the neatest or best decorated house, but you felt welcome there. The coffee pot was always on, and food brought out whenever company arrived. Family and neighbours could be found gathered around the kitchen table visiting or playing cards. Many of these friends’ children came to know her as Auntie or Grandma Dorothy. Karen has taken this hospitality to heart and her home has become the gathering place for family and friends. In the past years Mom loved to hang out with her family at Karen’s house. She would not rest as long as someone was up just so she wouldn’t miss a minute with her family. She loved hanging out at the firepit except when a storm was nearing, she would scurry to the house (right Mackenzie). Thunder and lightning always scared her. After Dad was gone Victor would always check in with Mom if she was at home alone during a storm.
She grew flowers wherever she lived both inside and outside of her home. Her lilies and gladiolus were noteworthy with new colours and sizes planted each year. She grew more than just flowers; she also grew acres and acres of vegetables. Her gardens were not always perfectly weeded but they produced many pounds of fresh vegetables that she processed to help feed her family. Any extra produce was freely shared with friends and neighbours. Gardening was a labour of love for Mom.
Mom and Victor had a special connection, in Mom’s eyes Victor was always right, any decision she made had to be run by him first. She definitely agreed with his choice of a wife. Mom gained a kindred garden spirit when Victor married Tanya. The garden was a place for them to start building their relationship. In the beginning it was Mom guiding Tanya in the art of being a farmer’s wife. In the last years it was Tanya lending Mom a helping hand adjusting to retirement life.
Mom was an active community member whether it was Dexter, Livelong, or St. Walburg. She was willing to be the worker or the organizer whatever was needed. She taught us that you get out of community what you put into it. Once her and Dad had more spare time, they spent time in Livelong every week bowling and curling. I felt incredibly special to have been able to join Mom bowling once a week and curling in many ladies bonspiels together. It became even more special when Shelby was old enough to join us, for a 3-generation curling team. Mom loved to golf, and we sometimes questioned her counting skills, but never her golfing skills. Renting a golf cart and going golfing with Karen and Ed was always an adventure for her. Later her grandchildren became her favourite golfing partners.
Mom also enjoyed travelling both near and far. Her and Dad did not get to do as much travelling as they wanted but did get out to Prince George and Fort St. John together. Her and Karen flew to Yuma in January 2015 and checked out the life in Arizona in the winter. Later her trips and adventures were closer to home. She was excited to go and see Levi and Mackenzie’s new acreage at Lashburn. Trips to Lloyd to meet Eli, Merritt and Walker and to Saskatoon to meet Bree and Callie when they were born were great adventures for her. But her 3 trips to Eston to spend time with Ed and his family was one of her highlights.
She moved into St. Walburg in 2012. Here she quickly made connections within the community. She had her little red Ford Escape, and it took her uptown and on many other adventures with her neighbour Dora. She had been a long-time member of the Legion in Livelong and soon joined the St. Walburg branch, helping with Bingos and any other activities with them. She travelled to many parts of the province on Legion bowling and golf teams. She bowled with John on a team and years later he became a member of her family.
Grandchildren were a huge part of her life. She had a special connection with each and every one of them. In the summer there were not many evenings that did not see Mom and Dad at Moonlight Bay buying ice cream for some or all their grandchildren. She made quilts for her grandchildren, and you can see them displayed at her today. Blair remembers picking berries with Grandma as a young boy, not sure if he put them in the pail or canned them in his tummy. He was always up for a round of golf with her. Heather and Grandma were kindred spirits, they dressed alike and were always involved in some craft project. Heather and Grandma both had trouble spelling and Heather wears a remembrance of this in her tattoo on her leg with Dorothy spelt D O R T H Y. Shelby was lucky enough to curl with grandma in many bonspiels including winning the Medstead ladies. Levi loved to tease Grandma and get her going. He spent some time after graduation as Grandma’s roommate. Blayne loved it when Grandma came to watch her at one of her sporting events and Grandma relived her athletic days through her. Blayne spent many hours just hanging out with Grandma on the farm and in St. Walburg. Kaitlin and Grandma both loved animals. It was a special event when Grandma came to the arena to watch her ride. Kaitlin gave Grandma’s dog, Snoopy, many lovely haircuts. Kaitlin spent many days at Grandmas while I worked, and Grandma cleaned her up after all her adventures. Amanda enjoyed watching Grandma interact with her children and get to know her. Tessa and Grandma were gardening buddies, discussing flowers and gardening together. Sabrina now knows where she got her looks from, pictures of Mom when she was younger look just like Sabrina. Mom loved welcoming all the new friends and partners these grandchildren brought into her life. Seeing the grandchildren succeed in life and start their careers and create homes of their own brought her pride.
Now after grandchildren came the “Greats”. She did not always remember everyone’s name, but GG knew them for who they were. She had a box of toys for the little ones when they stopped by. Facetime was a way for her to get to know them when she couldn’t see them in person. She became a Great Grandma when Eli was born, and they had a strong connection. Eli was followed by Merritt, a much quieter gentle soul. Bree was the first great granddaughter but not for long as her number of great grandchildren grew quickly as Ed brought 6 more into her life with one phone call. Hayden, Cruz, Cole, Rowen and Talon and the second great granddaughter Keira joined her family. This number expanded even further with the birth of our little ball of mischief, Walker. 3 more great granddaughters, Kya, Callie and Maisie, arrived, she loved holding these little ones and bonding with them.
Nieces and nephews were also a big part of Mom’s life. She was always interested in what they were up to. She kept any news articles about their accomplishments as well as invitations, announcements, and thank you cards from them. Her nieces admired her use of make-up and were known to have snuck into Mom’s make up supply and experimented with it.
She had to move to the Paradise Hill Care Home in January 2023. Once again, she quickly adjusted and made new friends. She found a place where she could have her own space but there was always someone nearby to talk to if she wanted.
Dorothy is survived by her 4 children Ed (Monanne) Martin, Anita (John Opsal) Hamm, Victor (Tanya) Hamm, and Karen (Ed Norman) Hamm and , 9 grandchildren Amanda (Damien) Evens, Tessa (Brian) Wallace, Sabrina (Brayden) Meckling, Blair (Michelle) Leonard, Heather (Mark Hofer) Leonard , Shelby (Cole) Meachem, Levi (Mackenzie Nelson) Nichol, Blayne Nichol, Kaitlin (Dawson Cox) Nichol, , Great Grandchildren Hayden, Cruz, Cole, and Keira Evens, Rowen, Talon, and Kya Meckling, Bree and Callie Meachem, Merritt, Walker and Maisie Leonard, Eli Hofer, her sister Louise Haubold, her brother-in-law Wilfred (Darlene) Hamm, sisters-in-law Doris Colley, Vivian Colley and Helen (Ray) Brotzel, numerous nieces and nephews and cousins.
She was predeceased by her husband of 50 years Roy, her parents Mary and Nelson Colley, her brothers George and Norman Colley, her granddaughter Kyla (Dallas Sunstrum) Martin, her mother and father-in-law Julianna and Paul Hamm, her brothers-in-law Eric Haubold, Leander, Tony and Edward Hamm, her sisters-in-law Jennie (Martin) Kahtava, Marie Henning, her niece Sharon Acker and her nephews Darwin Colley, Roy and Marvin Kahtava.