Eleanor (Kurtz) Pydde
Eleanor Elizabeth Kurtz was born on November 16, 1940 to parents Emil and Amalja Kurtz, on their farm located west of Millet. The youngest of seven, Eleanor began her schooling at Porto Bello School where she attended from grades one to four. She then attended Pipestone School for grades five to eleven, before going to the Wetaskiwin Composite High School for grade twelve. After this, Eleanor went to the University of Alberta and studied in the Education Department. From 1961-1962, she taught at Rosebrier.
On July 6, 1962, Eleanor married Dennis Pydde at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church. They lived on his farm and had one son, Darrell. After Darrell was born, Eleanor taught at Pipestone School for four years. In 1968, she began teaching at Millet School, where she taught for twenty-eight years until her retirement in 1996. In total, she taught Grade 3 for thirty-four years.
In 1972, Eleanor and Dennis sold the farm and moved to Leduc. They then moved to an acreage east of Millet in 1975. They lived there until they sold the acreage and moved into Millet in May 1993.
In 1980, they started their own business, Dennis Pydde Trucking. They traveled all over the province, from La Crete to Airdrie and Lloydminster to Edson. Eleanor took over the business after Dennis’ passing in 1997. She ran Dennis Pydde Trucking until 2011, when she sold the business.
It is truly amazing and awe-inspiring how involved Eleanor has been in the community through the years. Eleanor was a member of the Town Council for nineteen years, from 1998-2017. Over the years, she has participated in several interesting volunteer activities, such as the jail and bail fundraiser, where specific individuals were “arrested and jailed” by the RCMP. These individuals then had to call friends and family, asking them to pledge money to meet their “bail” in order to be released. She has also been on the Visual Arts Committee, and was involved in the initiatives to have murals painted on the library, community hall, and Lions’ hall.
Eleanor has volunteered with the Millet and District Historical Society since 2002. She was the president for two years, and has been involved in many of their projects, such as the Pioneer Women exhibit, the Millet Rural School project, the Millet School project, and the Bell Kiosk project. She has also been a member of the Millet Lions for twenty years. Eleanor has been the emcee for the Millet in Bloom dinner, the Pioneer Women induction ceremony, and the Community Awards ceremony for years, as well as for the Lions’ mural dedication. Her humourous speeches leaves people in stitches.
Eleanor has been involved in many other volunteer groups as well. She worked with Victim’s Services for two and a half years. While on Town Council, she was the Town Liaison for many groups. In addition, she is a member of the Wetaskiwin United Church.
Eleanor's tireless contributions have made a profound impact on life in Millet.