Verna was born at Resource, SK in 1932, the oldest daughter of Fred and Rose Stegman. The family grew to include her sisters Esther and Geraldine. They moved around a bit before settling in Crooked River. In 1951, Verna married Lester Rowley and they bought a farm near Eldersley where they raised six children and for many years managed a household of 10 which included Verna’s Uncle Adam Young and Auntie Violet Young.
While raising her family and managing the farm with Lester, Verna was an avid gardener, writer, photographer and entrepreneur. She ran a small mail order business called The Stamp Exchange, wrote a weekly column for the Commonwealth newspaper and had several articles and photographs published in the Western Producer. She was also very active in politics, attending meetings and conventions and canvassing. She was involved with the Legion Auxiliary in Tisdale and was an active member of the Tisdale Farmer’s Market (and later the Saskatoon one).
In 1982, Lester and Verna retired from farming and moved to Saskatoon where Verna joined a camera club and won several awards for her photography. Lester passed away in 1992 and Verna moved back to the Tisdale area. She bought an acreage in Tisdale where she operated Honeybee Hideaway Greenhouse for many years. During this time, she also became a Soldier in the Salvation Army.
Throughout her life, even when times were hard, Verna donated to many different charities, supported children overseas and the Kinsman Telemiracle.
She was pre-deceased by her infant brother Wayne in 1945, her parents Fred Stegman in 1950 and Rose Gagnon in 2000, her sister Geraldine (Allan) Hamilton in 2004, her husband Lester Rowley in 1992 and her son Kevin Rowley in 2012.
She is survived by her aunt Doreen Deforest of Tisdale, SK; sister Esther (Glen) Gagnon of Savona, BC; sister-in-law Natalie Rowley of Tisdale, SK; her sons Fred Rowley and Art Rowley, both of Tisdale, SK; her daughtersKaren (Roy) Kerr of Borden, SK, Kathy (Stan) McGaffin of Saskatoon, SK, Lorraine (Walter) Beeching of Tisdale, SK; grandchildren Donna Rowley (Ron Lukinchuk), Tisdale, SK, Tiffany Rowley, Tisdale, SK, Jason (Nicki) Rowley, Dawson Creek, BC, Brent Rowley (Roxanne Evans ), Edmonton, AB, Lisa Rowley (Kelly Ollenberger), Fort Nelson, BC, Jordan (Nadia) Smith, Asquith, SK, Vanessa Smith (James Richardson), Saskatoon, SK, Heather McGaffin and Michelle McGaffin, both of Saskatoon, SK, Scott (Paula) Beeching, Swift Current, SK, Mark (Lisa) Beeching, Macklin, SK, Michael Beeching (Cassandra Keen), Tisdale, SK and numerous great grandchildren. Verna also acknowledges a very special friend of many years and “adopted son” Joseph Hnatiw.