Weyburn Pioneer Woman Sculpture

Weyburn Pioneer Women Sculpture Committee

Committee Members - Isabelle Butters, Leo Leyden, Stan Runne, Ross McMurtry, Mayvis Goranson, Jan Linnell

Left to Right

M. Isabelle Butters, Leo Leydon, Stan Runne, Ross McMurtry, Mayvis Goranson, Jan Linnell

Committee members Ross McMurtry, M.Isabelle Butters, Leo Leydon, Mayvis Goranson, Stan Runne and Jan Linnell  connected throughout the city and country side telling the story of our grandmothers heritage ,gathering donations and encouraging people to write the story  as they knew it of their beginnings here in Saskatchewan.

M. Isabelle Butters - Isabelle Butters is a retired Co-op Manager; served eighteen years on Weyburn City Council, six of them as Mayor.  Weyburn and community is dear to her heart and she was pleased to work with a great committee in making the “Pioneer Woman Sculpture become a reality”.



Leo Leydon -  Dr. Leo Leydon arrived in Weyburn in June 1948 after graduating in Optometry, providing care until his retirement in 1995. During his career he was a member of the Knights of Columbus, Lion’s Club and served on the University of Regina Senate, Campion College Board, and the Optometric Association Board as well as the Weyburn Catholic School Board.

With his wife Joan they raised a family of five, one son and four daughters. The children have gone on to careers in engineering, health care and education.

Leo first became interested in the pioneers after listening to his father’s stories about the settlers in the Wilke area of Saskatchewan from 1906 to 1913. Over his 47 years of listening to his older patients in his office during their visits, he came to appreciate their wonderful stories (some not so happy) but all telling of their determination and resourcefulness.

The committee who spear headed this project were a great group of volunteers, perhaps the best group he has had the pleasure to serve with. The people, businesses and the city of Weyburn and area are to be thanked for the success of this undertaking.

The statue of the Pioneer Woman is a great piece of art that should be here for a century or two reminding us of how this area of the province was opened up.

Stan Runne - retired in 2001 from his position as City Comptroller/Treasurer with the City of Weyburn after 36 years (30 years as Treasurer and 6 years in the Engineering Department.  He was a long time member and Past President of the Weyburn Young Fellows Club and active in community events, usually in a finance or accounting role.  Stan and his wife Paula nee Sebok have two daughters, Lisa and Andrea.  His involvement with the "Pioneer Woman Sculpture" was kindled from history books on early prairie settlers and the sacrifices made by women for their families. 

Ross McMurtry- was born, raised and served as a minister in the United Church of Canada, now retired, add those years  together and you get 89 years all spent here in Saskatchewan.
    He can still remember as a young boy meeting a number of women who came first to this land called the North West Territories later Saskatchewan.  They came to establish a home and a community so that their children would have a future of hope and promise.  He listened to their stories of turning dreams into realities wanting to acknowledge their work and strife.  
    How to say "thank you" to these brave women?  Why not a sculpture in bronze that neither wind nor weather will be able to erase and stand as a memorial of gratitude for the legacy of the pioneer women?  He shared his dream with the community and the sculpture became a reality.  

Mayvis Goranson - lived and worked on the family farm for fifty-three years, fifty with her late husband Douglas Goranson.  Mayvis realized early on what tremendous sacrifices and contributions women made to all aspects of agriculture.  She is interested in history, especially of women's issues after editing the Rural Municipality of Weyburn's history book, As Far As the Eye Can See.

Jan Linnell -is a retired educator with 28 years of classroom, counseling and administration experience.  Helping young women find a career path was a strong desire, as well as a lifelong interest in women's changing roles.  She lived in her family 1898 homestead surrounded by reminders of her pioneering family.  The opportunity to share the past lives and struggles by circulating the stories of women's contributions in pioneer times was a wonderful experience. 







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