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BERNHARD DOERKSEN (BERNIE)
Born: Aug 03, 1933
Date of Passing: Jan 11, 2022Send Flowers to the Family Offer Condolences or Memory
We are saddened to announce the passing of our father, Bernie Doerksen on January 11, 2022.
He leaves behind five loving children and their families, Ty (Patsy), Heather (Brian), Yvonne (Ken), Stewart (Kathy) and Tracy (Greg); along with grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great-grandchildren, too many to count.
Dad was the youngest son born on August 3,1933 in a traditional Mennonite house barn in the village of Neubergthal, Manitoba. His growing up years were spent on the family farm which included a frozen dugout where he could work on his skating skills. Dad played on the village hockey team, Neubergthal Aces and later went on to play with the Altona Maroons. In 1953 to 1954 he became a local hero and that notoriety attracted the attention of who would become the love of his life, Kathy Funk, our mother. Shortly after their marriage they moved from Altona to Winnipeg and lived in the St. James area while raising their family.
Dad had an infectious smile that would light up any room that he entered. His charismatic personality made for a prolific career in sales while working for both Eaton's and Sears. While working for Eaton's he reluctantly accepted the position of Operations Manager for Western Canada. Although it was a step upward in his career, he humbly returned to selling where his people skills would shine as he met and helped people.
Another important legacy are the numerous relationships developed over 50 years of his involvement in the AA Fellowship. His commitment to his own health, his family and carrying the message to others made him a cornerstone for the group he attended in St. James. For the entire 50 years Dad remained in the same AA group. He was known as an old timer and his mentorship and speaking abilities were sought by many. The love that Dad had for his brothers and sisters in the fellowship is not something to be duplicated. He was one of a kind! We, the kids, enjoyed many Birthday Meetings where he would be presented with his cake and another pin. As the years went by we would take our turn in presenting him with that cake. Many people have been positively impacted by the role that he played in the AA program for which he was deeply proud and grateful at the same time.
In lieu of a funeral at this time there will be a Celebration of Life later this spring; more information to follow.
For those who wish to sign the online Guest Book please visit www.chapellawn.ca
Chapel Lawn Funeral Home
As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Jan 15, 2022
Condolences & Memories (4 entries)
I first met Bernie at his group when I was a struggling young man. I was in and out of the program for 5 years. When I finally got sick and tired of being sick and tired I asked Bernie to sponsor me. I wanted what he had. He showed me how to have fun and not have to drink. I will never forget the hours we spent at the coffee shop after the meetings talking program with guys like Vern F. We curled at the Assiniboine Curling Club Sunday mornings 9:00 am feeling grateful we weren't the ones showing up hungover ! Bernie would organize a yearly golf tournament at Falcon lake , I didn't really golf , but would go because Bernie was and would have a great time. We did a step study together and he had a potluck dinner after at his house on Columbus, family and friends all welcome. I could go on and on of all the things I did and learned from Bernie. His wisdom and slogans I still share at meetings to this day. It being passed down to the newcomers and I am sure some of his sayings will be around for years. I give Bernie the credit for my 28 years of sobriety without him I don't think it would have happened. I am forever grateful and I am sure the list is long of others that feel the same way. God has a special place for Bernie. Jamie K - Posted by: Jamie Keough (Sponsee) on: Jan 19, 2022
I knew Bernie for years during our employment with Eatons, both as a salesman at the service building and later as a boss during the time that I was working in the office on the Tormon Receiving Dock. Bernie was a super great person with a tremendous sense of humor, a great boss. The world has lost another wonderful person - Posted by: Frances Pinchin (former employee of Eatons) on: Jan 17, 2022
My condolences to your family on the death of your dear father. He was a dear friend of my Dad's, Henry Friesen, Your parents were good friends of my parents, Agatha and Henry. Sincerely, Jackie Blonski (nee Friesen) - Posted by: Jackie Blonski (My Father, Henry Friesen, was a dear long time friend of Bernie's) on: Jan 16, 2022
I have many memories of your dad. Especially the years he played hockey for the Altona Maroons. I remember meeting him at Sears in Polo Park where he worked. My condolences to the family. - Posted by: Robert Derksen (Cousin) on: Jan 15, 2022
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