It is with great sadness that we announce that Gertrud “Gigi’ Sturm-Krumsiek of Horsefly passed away while visiting her daughter in Germany. Her year-long battle with cancer ended on December 8, 2013 at the age of 62.
Gigi was laid to rest in a green burial forest in Bredenbeck, Germany, just 700m from the home she had once lived in. This is part of the forest she and her husband Rainer regularly used for long walks and visited with the children in fall to gather acorns.
Gigi was born in Osnabrück on April 18, 1951, the oldest of five children. She graduated from high school and then went on to college and worked as a doctor’s assistant. On October 1, 1986 Gigi married Rainer in Bredenbeck, Germany. Together they ran a successful landscaping business until they emigrated to Canada in 1993, together with their children Florian, Inga and Arne.
They first settled in Kelowna where they continued with their landscaping business. Two years later, they found their dream property in Horsefly, 2200 acres of beautiful pasture and forest. Here, with much hard work, they built the certified organic Big Bear Ranch, raising cattle, sheep, pigs and chickens. Certified since 2004, the Ranch continues to serve regular customers both locally and on the Lower Mainland.
Gigi put many hours into community service here in Horsefly, as President of the Fall Fair committee since 2005, and as a committee member for some years before that. Although ranch life consumed most of her days, she always found time to help her friends and neighbours with their projects. Gigi’s loves were her children, her garden and her Icelandic horses. She won many ribbons at the Fall Fair each year, especially in the vegetable, flower-arrangement and baking categories. Her unique style of breadmaking lives on in Horsefly today.
Big Bear Ranch will never be the same without her contagious laughter and her warm hospitality. Her house was always open to friends and visitors from all over the world. Gigi is survived by her loving husband Rainer, her son Florian with his wife Stefanie, her daughter Inga with her partner Arne, her son Arne and his partner Maureen. She is very much missed by her many friends here in the town she called home, Horsefly.