1937 - 2023
Josephine “Jo/Josie” Jetten, a strong-willed and loving mother, grandmother and beacon of unwavering support, passed away in Lethbridge on Monday, June 12, 2023 at the age of 85 years.
The celebration of Josephine’s life was held at the Lethbridge Soccer Centre (Servus Sports Centre), 2501 - 28 Avenue South, Lethbridge on Monday, June 19, 2023 between 6:00 P.M. and 8:00 P.M.
Josephine is lovingly remembered by her children Dean (LeeAnne) Jetten of Lethbridge and their two sons Taylor (Tasya and their son Tyger) and Braydon; Rob (Kelly) Jetten of Lethbridge and Rob’s children Nolan and Shaun; Lisa (Bill) Halma of Lethbridge; Niki (Chris) McIntyre of Lethbridge and their son Xander.
She was predeceased by her husband Ted Jetten.
Born on November 11, 1937, in the humble town of Lipton, Saskatchewan, Josephine spent most of her childhood and formative years in Foamlake, Saskatchewan, with a brief stint in Campville, Manitoba. As the second youngest among five children, she grew up on a modest acreage where her father ran a Blacksmith shop, and life wasn't always easy. Josephine learned the value of resilience and independence at a young age, especially with three older brothers. She had to toughen up quickly to navigate her surroundings. There were times when she relied on meager lard sandwiches to keep her hunger at bay, as the family struggled to make ends meet. But Josephine never let adversity dampen her spirits.
At the age of eighteen, Josephine received an unexpected gift that would shape her future—a typewriter from her mother. Eager to seize the opportunity, she embarked on a journey that began with working for Sasktel after completing high school. It was during this time that Josephine's path intertwined with that of Ted, introduced to her through mutual friends. Their relationship had a rocky start, and it took Ted cutting his hair and persistent wooing for Josephine to finally accept his proposal. The couple tied the knot about a year and a half later.
Following the norms of their generation, Josephine focused on raising their children while Ted pursued a career with Alberta Transportation. She embraced her role as a homemaker, dedicating herself to the upbringing of their children. It wasn't always glamorous or easy, but Josephine's strength and selflessness were the pillars that held the family together.
While Ted was away from home working, Josephine was the main parent for a significant part of the children’s early years. Josephine faced numerous challenges head-on. With Ted needing the family vehicle for work, she often found herself trudging through the biting cold of winter, hauling the children's hockey equipment, and walking alongside them to the distant Adams Ice Centre on the northside of Lethbridge, ensuring that Rob and Dean could pursue their passion for hockey. Josephine's own needs took a backseat as she sacrificed her own wardrobe, wearing the same clothes year after year, just so her children could have new shirts, toys, hockey sticks or soccer cleats. Her unwavering determination and sacrifices laid the foundation for her children's future opportunities.
Josephine possessed a remarkable spirit of courage, despite her fear of mice. In an act of bravery, she boldly asked a neighborhood boy to place mice in her hand, all in an effort to teach Dean and Rob that these tiny creatures were nothing to fear. Later in life, in her forties, she obtained her driver's license, defying the notion that it was too late to learn new skills. In her fifties, she took on a custodial position at Eaton's, not only to help cover costs of an ever growing family, but also to show her unwavering dedication to her family's well-being.
While Josephine may not have been a passionate cook, she found solace in baking. Her love for creating delectable treats lives on through the cherished recipes she passed down to her loved ones. However, her true joy came from being a devoted family person. Josephine taught her children and grandchildren a myriad of card and board games, fostering laughter and togetherness. Summers were spent camping with Ted, wherever his work took them, and they made sure to visit her family in Foamlake at least twice a year—creating lasting memories during extended stays in the summer and a week of celebration at Christmas. Sports became a significant part of their lives, and Josephine rarely missed a game, attending hockey, soccer, badminton, volleyball and football matches. Her warm embrace and reassuring smile were a constant source of comfort, with her and Ted never failing to express their pride in their children's/grandchildren’s efforts, regardless of the outcome. Their unwavering support provided an unshakeable foundation.
One might assume that raising four children would mark the end of Josephine's child-rearing journey, but that was far from the truth. Round two commenced when she took on the incredible task she treasured the most—helping to raise all five of her grandsons while their parents worked. Taylor, Braydon, Nolan, Shaun and Xander were blessed to experience Josephine's love and care firsthand, and they owe her a debt of gratitude for the impact she made on their lives.
Josephine, you were an extraordinary mother, a cherished grandmother, and a role model who taught us the importance of standing up for our beliefs and cherishing our family. Your unwavering love and support will be deeply missed, but your legacy will forever live on in our hearts. Rest in peace, knowing that your love has shaped us into who we are today.
If friends so desire, memorial tributes in Josephine’s name may be made directly to the Alzheimer’s Society, 40, 1202 - 2 Avenue South, Lethbridge, Alberta T1J 0E3 www.alzheimer.ca.