Ferne was introduced to genealogy in 1980 and has been thoroughly hooked ever since. She grew up in Selkirk, Manitoba and spent a portion of every summer at her grandparents’ farm in the Wynyard/Kandahar area of Saskatchewan visiting her dad’s side of the family, including her grandfather and her great uncles who had come from Iceland. Ferne’s grandfather never told her about the rugged horses native to his boyhood home, but after his passing, Ferne had the joy of owning four Icelandic mares at her farm in Alberta.
Ferne’s first trip to Iceland was in 2007. Upon arrival, she vividly remembers taking in a huge breath of Icelandic air and having the incredible feeling of coming home. Then came the Snorri Plus years; Ferne participated in the Snorri Plus program for three consecutive years (2010 - 2012).
Ferne says the Snorri Plus program was a fantastic way to experience Iceland. Standing on the spot where her great grandmother was born, while looking across at the ocean and the mountains behind, was a life-changing experience. Ferne was also delighted to finally have the opportunity to ride Icelandic horses in the natural beauty of their homeland. Another memorable experience was listening to a friendly, knowledgeable gentleman give a presentation about Iceland’s economic collapse in 2008. The gentleman in question was Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, who has since become President of Iceland.
Through her Snorri Plus experiences, Ferne met many wonderful people, including fellow participants and staff, as well as many marvelous distant cousins. And it was during a Snorri Plus event that she met Sunna Furstenau and was first introduced to Cousins Across the Ocean and later the wonderful Icelandic Roots team. The rest, as they say, is history!