Emily Kekec

November 24, 2019


Emelin (Ljubica) Kekec (nee Smederovac)

October 11, 1934 - November 24, 2019

Emily passed away peacefully in the early morning of November 24th at the age of 85. Emily leaves to mourn her son Russell (Denise), grand children Adrian (Veronika), and Natalie; daughter Audrey (Laurie) Goodbrandson, grandchildren Cady, Luc (Matt), Aric (Mona) and great grandchild (Lucas); sister Mary Kraljevic (John); brothers Mike (Margaret), and Doug (Donna); and sisters-in-law Mary and Myrla.

Emily was loved by many family members and friends, including numerous nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, and cousins. Emily was predeceased by her parents Katherine and Michael, brothers John and Joe, and son-in-law Heinz Gnitzinger.

Born in Donje Stative, Karlovac, Croatia, Emily became ill with Polio at the age of 3 and lost her hearing due to a secondary infection. Emily attended a school for the deaf and learned to become a seamstress. Emily married in 1956, divorced in 1963 and subsequently moved to Canada in the Selkirk area with her two children, joining her mother, siblings and family. Emily worked for a time as a seamstress in a sewing factory when the family lived in Winnipeg and Tudor House Personal Care Home when the family lived in Selkirk.

Emily lived with many challenges throughout her life including mental illness, she didn’t let them stop her. Emily loved baking, cooking meals for family and friends, sewing and participating in activities with the deaf community. Emily move to Winnipeg in the 90’s to the Deaf Centre where she became a part of the community in a more meaningful way. Emily loved to play cards, go bowling, and attend dances and parties.

After a time at Bethania Personal Care Home in Winnipeg, Emily moved to Tudor House Personal Care Home where she spent her final years cared for in a compassionate and loving way by its many wonderful staff.

Emily was loving, generous, strong, resilient, friendly and sociable, always having a smile for everyone. Her greatest joys were her five grandchildren, and great-grandson whom she was very proud of.

In keeping with her wishes, cremation has taken place and a private family service will be held. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Emily’s name to:

Deaf Centre of Manitoba/Deaf Resource Centre

285 Pembina Highway, Wpg MB

R3L 2E1

Gilbart Funeral Home, Selkirk in care of arrangements.


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