Schnell, Lorna Jean

Written by Submitted

March 30, 1946 – October 8, 2016
Lorna was born in Castor on March 29 or 30, 1946, depending upon which records are referred to. When she obtained her driver’s license, she chose March 30 as it was easier to remember.
She grew up in Castor and returned often as it was always her “home town.”
She was a licensed LPN and worked in Red Deer for eight years before returning to Red Deer College to train for a Diploma in Secretarial Science. Lorna moved to Ponoka and worked for the Alberta Government for 24 years, remaining in Ponoka after retirement in her home one block from where she once worked.
While living in Ponoka she played piano at her church, was president of the Riverside Good Neighbor Club and president of the Ponoka Word Weaver writing group.
In her youth, Lorna was an active member of the Castor C.G.I.T group, babysat for many families, had a Calgary Herald paper route and was an active member of the E.U.B. Church.
Many members of the Castor community (numbering about 120) were her direct or distant relatives.
Lorna spent a lot of time at the John Traudt farm as she was the first female grandchild in the family and was doted on by six aunts and uncles still living on the farm.
Lorna was proud of her “Germans from Russia” heritage as both sets of grandparents and her mother (Annie Schnell) were born in the village of Norka on the Volga River, Russia.
Her father (Henry Schnell) was born in Canada after his parents John and Amelia immigrated. Annie and Henry grew up in the Beaver District on adjacent farms and lived their whole lives in Castor.
Henry was a key member of John Schnell and Sons Garage Ltd. for 50 years, known for his iron repairs at work and evening wood working building spinning wheels.
Lorna travelled widely, ranging from a summer working at a fishing camp above the Arctic Circle to Kenya on the equator.  She and her mother travelled in Europe and Russia to near where her mother grew up.
Lorna witnessed the fall of the Berlin wall.  She once spent a week living in an isolated lighthouse to gather material for a novel she wrote.
Lorna was an accomplished poet and published in a variety of books and magazines for which she proudly received payments.
In October 2015 she published a 240 page book on the history of the Schnell and Traudt (mother) families with a focus on the lives of the Henry and Annie Schnell family.
These members include her survivors Dr. Russell and Suan Schnell, Boulder, Colorado and their children Alicia and Ryan, and Brenda (Schnell) and Jack Scott (Edmonton) and their children Jennifer and Jolene.
Lorna is interred in the family plot in the Castor cemetery.  A memorial service will be held at a later date.  Condolences may be sent to the family at
Parkview Funeral Chapels & Crematorium entrusted with the care and funeral arrangements. 403-882-3141

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