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It is with sadness that the Scheibler family announces the passing of the family's patriarch, Johannes Scheibler, 85, formerly of Stratton, Ont.

He passed away Saturday, Sept. 2, 2017 at the Emo Health Centre in Emo, Ont., with his wife and family singing, praying, and sharing memories around his bedside.

Johannes was born on Sept. 18, 1931 in Zittau, Germany to Oswald and Margarete Scheibler; he was one of seven children.

As a young boy, he enjoyed being outdoors, playing his instrument in church, and he loved to read and learn.

Following WWII, at the tender age 17, he met his future wife, Inge Rentz, at a refugee camp in Germany. They married in 1952 and in 1955, wanting a better life for himself and his young family, immigrated to Canada-settling first in Winnipeg, Man. and then in Stratton in 1960.

He quickly picked up the English language by reading stories in the Reader's Digest and in 1962, along with his wife, proudly became a Canadian citizen.

During his first years in Canada, Johannes worked hard to support his growing family by doing odd jobs, working in a factory, and selling produce from their farm—instilling a strong work ethic in his children.

Then for 22 years, Johannes worked for the CN Railway as a foreman until a back injury led to his early retirement.

After the birth and illness of their son, Frank, Johannes and Inge committed their lives more fully to God.

Johannes grew to have an unshakeable faith and a personal relationship with God that he expressed and practised daily through his quiet prayer and devotion time every morning, his teaching and example to his children, his singing and whistling of Christian hymns wherever he was and whatever he was doing, and his spontaneous expressions throughout the day of “Praise the Lord!”—thanking God for his many blessings.

He felt especially blessed when their home was overflowing with family!

Johannes loved the land he lived on in Stratton. Even while he was busy with his day job and farming, he lovingly tended to his bountiful vegetable garden and beautiful flowers (the sound of him hoeing and whistling in the garden always will stay with us).

Gardening brought him such joy.

Over the years, Johannes pursued many interests, including becoming an avid stamp-collector, attending prayer breakfasts, visiting with and singing for isolated seniors, creating and selling his distinctive woodwork that still can be seen throughout the area, and running as a candidate for the Christian Heritage Party in a federal election.

Most notably, his family and friends will remember Johannes for his beautiful, rich baritone voice that would soar above all others. God gifted him with an amazing voice that needed to be heard! Not so long ago, Johannes still was singing God's praise and joining his children in harmony.

His family will miss his mischievous grin, his warm and welcoming hugs, his German and English reading of the Christmas Story, his banter, competitiveness and enthusiasm during a card game, his “creative” German/English words, and his youthful passion for life.

Johannes was predeceased by his two younger brothers, Hermann and Friedrich of Germany; his infant son in Germany; and his 55-year-old son, Frank.

He will be dearly missed by his wife of 65 years, Inge; children Mike, Barb (Larry), Chris, Jim (Maxine), Ralph (Cindy), Andreas (Denise), Rosi (Domenic), Gabriel, Gloria (Tony), and Dorothy; his numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren (the youngest being two weeks old); his siblings, nieces, and nephews in Ontario, Manitoba, and Germany; and his many friends throughout the Rainy River district.

Family and friends will be received on Friday, Sept. 8, 2017 at 7 p.m. at the Northridge Funeral Home in Emo.

A service of celebration and remembrance of Johannes' life will follow on Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017 at 1 p.m. at the Northridge Funeral Home, with Pastor Mark Mast officiating.

Luncheon to follow.

A private internment will take place at the Emo Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, in memoriam donations may be made to the Emo Health Centre.