Obituary of Helen McDonald
July 4, 1932 – November 13, 2017
It is with love that we share the news of the passing of Helen McDonald (Bakkehaug) on
November 13, 2017 at Points West Hospice surrounded by family.
Helen Agnes McDonald was born on July 4, 1932 at Poplar Hill, Alberta in a tiny farm
house. She was the third child of five siblings of Einar Konrad Olsen Bakkehaug and
Helen was raised in the Valhalla area along with her siblings on a farm and schooled at
Poplar Hill. She worked at the Grande Prairie Hospital as a ward aid and later
volunteered at the hospital as well.
She met the love of her life at a dance at the Crystal Creek Hall on May 2, 1951,
Robert (Bruce) McDonald. Bruce and Helen were married two years later on June 12,
1953. They established their home east of Grande Prairie near the Crystal Creek Hall
where they raised five children.
Family was her pride and joy; for whom she loved baking countless loaves of homemade
bread, buns, pies, jams, cookies, squares, you name it. Helen spent many hours
baking with her grandkids making Lefse and any other items the kids requested. All
guests who visited the McDonald home were welcomed with a smile and got to benefit
from Helen’s fantastic baking. The memories of jumping off the school bus to the smell
of fresh baked bread will always bring a smile to our faces.
Other passions include knitting and crocheting mittens, sweaters, toques, afghans,
socks, slippers, and baby blankets for her grandchildren. Helen was naturally musical,
playing the piano, guitar, harp, ukulele, and mandolin for which she was self- taught. She
was very proud of her garden, flowers and being able to provide a healthy meal for her
family and friends.
Helen and Bruce enjoyed travelling. Some of their favorite trips were to Norway,
Alaska, Cuba, Mexico, to name a few along with several farm tours meeting new
Faith was a part of who she was, as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses she studied and
applied the bible principles which gave her inner peace and we take comfort knowing
she is safe in God’s’ memory.
Those left to cherish her memory include her loving husband Robert (Bruce) McDonald,
five children: Janet Adams (Ron), daughters Mary and Tanya Sandford (Matt), Darrell
McDonald, Gerald McDonald (Denise) and children Jennifer Young (Adam), Trena
Shaw (Tom), Michelle Krawetz (Mike), and Tyler (Shelley), Shirley McDonald-Norton,
sons Colton and Chance Norton, Ross McDonald (Sandy) and sons Braden, Devon
and Tyson along with 6 step-grandchildren, and 20 great grandchildren. Brother Ole
(Tina), sister Jenny, brother-in-law Donald McDonald (Nancy), sister-in-law Margaret
Ladwig and numerous nieces and nephews.
Helen was predeceased by her parents Einar and Ingebjorg Bakkehaug, her father and
mother-in-law John and Jenny McDonald (Clarkson), two sisters, Helen (whom she
was named after), and Irene, sister-in-law Lena Moon and brothers-in-law Jack Moon
and Keith Ladwig.
Please join us in celebrating Helen’s life at the Five Mile Hall, on November 18, 2017 at
2:00 pm. A social gathering of the family and friends will follow.
At family’s request donations can be made to Alzheimers Society of Canada
( www.alzheimer.ca ) or a charity of one’s choice.
Special thanks to the staff at Points West Hospice for the wonderful care and love given
during this difficult time.
Care entrusted to Bear Creek Funeral Home www.bearcreekfuneral.com 780-830-7742