Karen Auvinen, 74 years young. 1942- 2017
Sisko Hannele Kaarina 74, of Maple Ridge, British Columbia passed away on Friday, April 14, 2017, with her family by her side.
Born July 1, 1942 in Kannus, Finland, she was the daughter of late Matti S. Parkkinen and Tyyne A. Parkkinen. She is also predeceased by her brothers, Erkki M. Parkkinen and Ensio O. Parkkinen, as well by her husband of 39 years, Martti J. Auvinen.
She is survived and lovingly remembered by her daughter, Lea M. Walton (Brad King), of Maple Ridge, two granddaughters, Katrina and Kari Walton, one sister, Terttu (Mauri) Lahti, of Thunder Bay, Ontario, and one niece, Lisa (Darren) Lahti-Robinson, of Memphis, Tennessee, as well as many extended family members and friends.
After immigrating to Canada in 1953, Karen, resided in Thunder Bay, Ontario and graduated from Hillcrest High School. She learned English quickly and mastered it well, outshining her classmates with her essays and homework.
Karen was a cheerleader for the Reipas soccer team, Reipas being a Finnish /Canadian sports organization founded in the early 50’s. Karen’s photo (she’s wearing the “E”) with her cheerleading group is featured and the cover of the book titled “A Century of Sport in the Finnish Community of Thunder bay”. She worked at a coffee shop and the Provincial Paper Mill and a co-worker introduced her to her future husband. She married Martti in 1965 and had a daughter in 1967. Karen and her husband owned a ski shop in Thunder Bay for a couple of years.
When Karen and her family moved to Maple Ridge in the spring of 1972, it was the wettest spring on record, the rain was relentless day after day. To make matters worse, Karen and her family were living in a tiny trailer they had hauled from Ontario until they could purchase some property, which they eventually did and built there their home. Karen lived there for 41 years. During that time she was rarely idle. She loved berries of all kinds, and she put many years of hard work into planting, tending and picking many rows of raspberry bushes, as well as canning and making jams and desserts. She was an excellent baker, making many loaves of pulla over the years. She was a voracious reader, devouring novels. She enjoyed doing macramé, knitting, petti-point and various crafts. She was creative and artistic, she loved thrift store finds that were her little treasures. Her biggest treasures were her daughter, and later her granddaughters – her world revolved around them. Children and animals always brought a smile to her face. She adored her little dog Mini. In 2013 Karen moved to be closer to her daughter and her family, which was good for everyone. She was a kind and gentle person for the most part, shy at times- opinionated at others, but extremely likable with a quick wit about her.
Karen was a home maker and she made a house a home. Her house was always clean and welcoming, the dinner was ready, the coffee was on, dessert was made, and the sauna was hot!