Glen Rya, age 91, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, April 7, 2021 at the Prairie Health Care Centre in Cabri, SK. Glen Wilfred Rya was born August 21, 1929 at the old Cabri Hospital — the eighth of ten children born to Hans & Karen Rya, who immigrated from Norway. As a boy, Glen enjoyed playing piano and “fighting with my younger sisters for a turn on the ivory.”
He attended the Mistletoe School, a one room schoolhouse, for eight years until it was closed in 1942. Getting to school was accomplished by horse and buggy or lumber wagon and in winter, by sleigh or skiing. Glen completed his high school education, grade ten being the highest grade offered at that time, at Scotia School, which was a four-mile journey from the family farm.
Upon completing school, Glen worked on a farm for two summers before moving to Calgary, AB in the summer of 1949. There, he found a job with the Canadian Western Natural Gas Company digging ditches, which he did for nine years before setting off for Vancouver, BC working for BC Electric. After two years there, Glen missed the prairies and returned to Cabri in 1959, where he worked at the new Co-op service station and eventually became the manager.
In the fall of 1960, Glen and some of his friends took his new Pontiac to Sceptre for a dance and it was there he asked the prettiest girl in attendance, Kathleen “Kay” Patricia McConaghy, to dance with him. Kay was the Matron of the Leader Hospital and soon became the Matron of the Cabri Hospital. Glen & Kay were married on October 6, 1962 at the Scandia Lutheran Church in Cabri.
They moved to Calgary in 1967, where Glen worked for the City of Calgary Transit and Kay worked at the Brentwood Nursing Home. They had a cottage at Siksika and enjoyed their time there. Glen retired when he was 60 and they moved back to Cabri in June of 1989 where they enjoyed all the comforts of a new home, including central heating, a natural gas fireplace, a pool table, and all the latest modern conveniences — especially their new car and half-ton truck. After farming for a time, he sold his land and officially retired.
Glen enjoyed listening to and playing music — he played piano and guitar — curling, shooting pool, visiting with friends and family, and driving around in his truck to check out how the crops were doing and chatting with the farmers. Glen was laid back and gentle, with a caring heart and genuinely wanted everyone around him to be happy. He was incredibly social and will be missed by those who were blessed to know him.
Glen is survived by the love of his life, Kathleen “Kay” Rya; his sister, Irene Lindstrom; his brother-in-law, Bob Haden; his sister-in-law, Geraldine Rya; and by many nieces, nephews, great-nieces, and great-nephews.
Glen was predeceased by his parents, Hans & Karen Rya; his siblings and their spouses, Halvor (Myrtle) Rya, Kenneth (Thelma) Rya, Stanley (Eva) Rya, Leo Rya, Cora Haden, Agnes (Alex) Moffat, Norman Rya, and Shirley (Fred) Court; his brother-in-law, Alton Lindstrom; his sisters-in-law (Kay’s sisters), Eileen and Doris.
The Private Family Interment Service for Glen Rya was held on Monday, April 19, 2021 at 2:00 pm from the Cabri Cemetery, Cabri, SK with Rev. Greg Kiel officiating. The Graveside Service was recorded and will be published on Glen’s page when available.
In memory of Glen Rya, donations made to the Cabri Hospital Auxiliary (Box 104, Cabri, SK, S0N 0J0) would be appreciated by the family.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Glen Rya, please visit our floral store.
Cabri Hospital Auxiliary
Box 104, Cabri SK S0N 0J0