Jacob Ben Janz died June 27, 2009 at 96. He was born July 11, 1912 in Tiege, Russia to Benjamin B. and Maria Janz. In 1926, the family moved to Canada, settling on a farm in Coaldale, Alta. Jacob was saved at 15 and baptized into Coaldale MB Church at 23. He drove a school bus while finishing high school and farming with his father. He led the church choir and band for many years, and in 1943, married the pianist, Margaret Martens. From 1946–1948, he studied music at MBBC, Winnipeg. Jacob and Margaret returned to Coaldale, then in 1954 moved to Vauxhall, Alta., where they farmed 53 years. Jake taught Sunday School, led the choir and congregational music, worked the sound board, and took on other church responsibilities. He loved farming, and got to live through the transition from horse-drawn binders to huge pivots and tractors. At 94, he and Margaret moved to Coaldale, and in March 2009, he was admitted to Coaldale Health Centre. Jake is remembered as a gentle, wise, patient man, as persistent as his father, B.B. Janz. He was a hard worker, a music lover, generous giver, faithful follower of the Lord, and an example to his family. Jake is mourned by Margaret; children Marjorie, Eleanor (Sam) Petkau, Vera (Dwight) Nickel, Irene (Henry) Hamm, Ben (Ethel), Alfred (Martha); 18 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; 2 sisters.
Karla is a writer for Mennonite World Conference who lives in Winnipeg.