November 24, 1944 - November 11, 2023
In loving memory ~
It is with extreme sorrow that we announce the sudden passing of Karen Elizabeth Graves (nee Niebergall) on November 11, 2023, at 11:00am in Duncan BC. She was surrounded by family with the sun shining on her beautiful face after a short battle with a brain hemorrhage.
Karen was one of the strongest, kindest, most supportive and loving wife, mother, sister, Grandmother, Aunt and friend and we were blessed to have her as our matriarch. We will never fill the space left behind her.
She was born on November 24, 1944, in Duncan BC. She grew up in Lake Cowichan to parents Christian Niebergall and May Niebergall. Predeceased by her parents and siblings John Boyd, Barbara Newton, and Chris Niebergall. She is survived by her great love, husband and partner through life Ed Graves, loving daughters Christina Janzen (Terry), Dana Gamble (Allan), Leanna Graves, Grandchildren Maylia Janzen (Matt), Jesse Gamble (Carley), Aaron Janzen (Daisy)and Tayler Gamble (Aidan), and a large, loving extended family.
Karen met Ed in 1962 on a blind date while Ed was in the Navy and Karen was attending university in Victoria. They married on January 25, 1964, with their love enduring for almost 60 years. They have three daughters, Christina, Dana, and Leanna.
Karen went on to finish her teaching degree after her children were born and loved this career. After moving to Alberta in 1978 she had more successful career choices, but it was her entrepreneurial spirit that shone the most. She started with her love for teaching with Sylvan Learning Centre's and private schools. She eventually "retired" only to develop more businesses. She started with Gelato, fresh pasta and eventually Ed's Soup Shack which is thriving to this day; and is her legacy. She loved the farmers markets and with her ideas, volunteered in many capacities to help make these successful. Karen also loved a good party. Whether it be family reunions, Halloween with fireworks, summer bbq's, her annual Christmas strata party to even planning a socially distanced concert during covid, she knew how to bring people together.
Karen was surrounded with love every moment as she battled her catastrophic illness. Her nieces Morgan Newton and Arista Steabner along with their partners, Ray Brown and Darren Steabner, children, Joel, Madison, Brett, Terence and Kyle stayed with her throughout the nights so the immediate family could rest knowing we would need our strength for the inevitable. She was never alone, for which we are grateful beyond words.
We carry Karen forever in our hearts. She is greatly missed and we would like to celebrate her life. Please Join us on January 6, 2024 from 1-5pm at the Valley Seniors Centre, 198 Government St, Duncan, BC to honour Karen with our love.
In lieu of flowers please make a donation in Karen's name to the Heart and Stroke Foundation.