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Martha Karstad Martha Karstad

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Martha Elviera Karstad (Gelaude)

September 26, 1925 - November 8, 2022


On Tuesday, November 8, 2022, Mrs. Martha Elviera Karstad (née Gelaude) passed away peacefully, surrounded by family.

Predeceased by: Daughter Karen Rathbun (Gary) and Granddaughter Elsa Hélène Schueler

Survived by: Husband Lars Karstad, children Aleta Schueler (Fred), Elsen Karstad (Amy Sandys-Lumsdaine), Mark Karstad (Donna)

Martha was a devoted wife and mother, proud grandma of five, and great-grandma of five.

Born and raised on a farm near Brunkild, Manitoba, Martha was one of the 9 children of Katerina (Katarzyna) and Alphonse Gelaude. Prairie girl, daughter of immigrants, her physical strength lasted well into her 90s, and her industrious creativity has been passed on strongly through at least two generations.

As a young woman she worked at a variety of jobs in Winnipeg and Toronto, from housekeeping to bookbinding, and on a visit to Friends in Vancouver, met her future husband, Lars Karstad.

Martha became an accomplished photographer and videographer – a devoted and resourceful helpmate for Lars’s travel and fieldwork in wildlife disease research, both in Ontario and internationally, including 9 years when the family lived in Kenya. She enjoyed camping and safari, appreciating nature in all its manifestations.

Martha’s many hobbies, besides photography, included sewing, raising tropical fish, painting on porcelain, macrame, crochet, watercolour and oil painting, and most recently, one-of-a-kind card making. She often ended up teaching a craft once she’d mastered it. Her faithful and eloquent correspondence throughout the years with family and friends brought great mutual pleasure.

Martha had a light step and a gentle hand. Her spiritual life was the heart and centre of her existence, and it strengthened and steadied her throughout her life. Her kindness, faithfulness and wisdom was, and still is, a blessing and encouragement to all who knew her.

In memory of Martha, please make a generous donation to your favourite charity.

A graveside gathering will be held at a later date.


Send a condolence, light a candle and/or share a memory, click "Send Condolence". Once your message has been approved by the moderator it will be posted to the website.

Pages: 12

From: Nunes-Pottinger Funeral Service & Crematorium Ltd.

The Nunes-Pottinger Funeral Service & Crematorium Staff send our condolences to family and friends.

From: Barbara Lee
Relation: Niece

Sweet Auntie Martha! We will remember her smile and sparkling eyes as she gave us the best hugs ever…forever! Wish we could return those hugs to you as you grieve these days. 💕

From: Brenda Porter
Relation: Niece

Auntie Martha…. She will be remembered by me with tenderness. She had a sweet way of letting me know I was loved. Sending hugs to all of you❤️

From: Sandi Davison
Relation: Niece

Thank you Auntie Martha, for a life well lived and a safe example to follow. You were always interesting and interested.

From: Tanys Braun
Relation: Great Niece

My inspirational beautiful kind loving Aunt Martha
I’m blessed to have been able to be with you these last few years Sitting with you and going through your scrap books and hearing the stories was so wonderful. I was proud to be of help to you and Uncle Lars. You are forever in my heart
RIP my dear Great Aunt

From: Eileen
Relation: Aunt

A wonderful aunt, and a great friend! We will all miss her greatly, but she has gone on to the best of futures ~ one we all look forward to. R.I.P., Auntie Martha ~ and Big hugs to all of the family! ❤️

From: Sharon Fortt
Relation: Niece

Auntie Martha, you were such a warm, loving person and a light in my life. I love you.

From: Lola J, Burgess
Relation: church friend

Thinking of all of you and I am thankful for the wonderful opportunity to have the acquaintance of this precious and dear soul! Thanks for the time when Mark was attending the university here! Really valued the visits from his parents and we visiting them in Canada! Special shopping times with Martha and our day trip to Estes park here and Kalona there. All was wonderful and brought lasting memories. Have precious pictures and cards that she sent us also. A very Special lady!

From: Jean Hunter
Relation: Friend

Dearest Friend. I so value your friendship and love over the years since moving to West Kelowna. I treasure them in my heart. You and Lars have been so dear to both Marven and I, and since Marven’s passing dear to me. Love you dear Friend ❤️❤️

From: Elaine Johnston
Relation: Martha was my mom’s friend…and mine

Martha was a beautiful person, inside and out. Gelaudes were long time, deeply rooted, prairie friends of past generations. Much appreciated…Thinking of you Lars.

Pages: 12

Service Schedule

Private service arrangements have been made.

Memorial Gifts

The family has not designated a preferred charity at this time.

Thank You Notice

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