Kathy Rogger

It is with profound sadness that the family of Kathy Rogger announce her passing on October 27, 2012.

Kathy was born in central Switzerland in March, 1923, the last of thirteen children. Kathy grew up during the Depression, an event that shaped her adult life, and she had to grow up fast. After finishing grade 7 she was employed as a domestic on a farm where she spent the next several years.

At the age of 18 Kathy received a marriage proposal from the farmer’s son, and so the family legend goes, went to see a fortune teller to get a sense of her future. The fortune teller told her she would marry later in life, have 3 sons, and be happy but not rich. So Kathy spurned the offer and started to work as a waitress, an occupation she would enjoy until she moved to Canada. As a waitress, Kathy was able to work all over Switzerland in famous resorts like St. Mortiz and Davos. It also allowed her the freedom and independence to travel and pay her own way, a development that became the backbone of her life. Kathy had a powerful sense of adventure and a strong will to do it all by herself.

In 1955 Kathy met her future husband Karl through a church dating service. Karl was back from Canada where he had been working in logging camps in Quebec, Ontario and BC, and where he was intent on emigrating. Kathy was in love, up for the adventure and despite the protests of her family she arrived in Prince George in November, 1956, where she was married in a room full of strangers three weeks later.

Kathy adapted to Canada quickly though learning the language was a challenge she worked hard to overcome. Initially she spoke French to get by, and proceeded to learn English after taking one language course and then teaching herself. She proudly became a Canadian citizen in 1968.

Her family started to grow and she had, what do you know!, 3 boys by 1962. The family had moved to Quesnel from Prince George by then and they lived on Willis Street until 1968. On Willis Street the family made life-long friends in Quesnel’s Canadian and Swiss communities.

1968 was a pivotal year for Kathy because that is when she started to work at the hospital as a housekeeper. She loved working at G.R. Baker, for the work itself and all the social interactions with patients and staff alike. The family soon moved to North Quesnel so Kathy could walk to work, and she remained in this neighbourhood for the rest of her life.

Kathy was a very competitive person and thoroughly enjoyed playing cards and watching her sons play sports, especially hockey. She was a regular traveller on team trips and loved being a part of the successful Quesnel hockey community in the 1970’s. Her proudest moment came when her son Bruno played for Switzerland in the 1988 Calgary Olympics.

Kathy reluctantly retired from work in 1987 and enjoyed a wonderful retirement travelling to Europe to watch hockey, touring around BC and the Yukon on Greyhound, and spending time with family and grandchildren.

We already miss Kathy’s self-deprecating humour and optimistic outlook, her Swiss cooking, her beautiful garden, her smiles, her laughing, her support and her advice. In the end, Kathy’s fortune teller was wrong about one prediction: Kathy had a rich life that money cannot buy.

Kathy is predeceased by her husband Karl, She is survived by her grateful family. Carl (Jitka), Bruno (Cveta), Fred (Anna), and grand-children Benji, Brian, Jake and Hannah.

Special and endless thanks to the care-givers in the Quesnel medical system. Kathy worked amongst you for 25 years and you took care of her like one of your own family. Words cannot express our appreciation of your dedication and professionalism.

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