It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Darcy Elroy Carlson on January 8, 2021 at the Winnipegosis and District Health Center at the age of 75 years.
Darcy was born on July 22nd, 1945 in Winnipegosis, Manitoba to parents Percy Carlson & Anna Carlson (Shannon). Dad took great pleasure in pointing out that Aunty Lyn was his much older sister (even though it was only 2 years). Now while grandpa and grandma Carlson had a house in Winnipegosis, they were commercial fishers and spent most of their time during the winter and summer fishing seasons living and working out of Duck Bay and Spruce Island. Dad took pleasure in showing us the Spruce Island fishing village remnants and reflected on grandpa using a team of horses and caboose in the winter as well how they would put up ice in the winter for use in the summertime fishing season.
Dad attended school in Winnipegosis as far as grade 11 before turning his attention to working full time in the family fishing industry and working in the “bush”, as so many young men in Winnipegosis, did traveling to work with Midwest in Diamond Drilling throughout northern Manitoba.
He married the love of his life, Diane on October 25th, 1969 in the Toutes Aides Roman Catholic Church, Toutes Aides, Manitoba... you know that it was lifelong love when all these years later they still referred to each other by pet names. Dad and Mom lived and worked out of Thompson, Manitoba after first being married, before he worked on building a home on the Drake River just across from Duck Bay. While being across there mom and dad took a hand at ranching for a while raising cattle and haying wild meadows. As the time came for the boys to attend school, dad moved the family in with Grandpa Carlson in Good Harbour.
Dad, as most commercial fishers in Lake Winnipegosis, worked at the fish hatchery on Hatchery Island in Duck Bay until it was destroyed by fire and then he spent a year working at the fish hatchery in Grand Rapids and helped start a fish hatchery program near Winnipegosis. The next move came in the fall of 1979 when they purchased a mobile home and had it set up at the site of the Campbellton School No. 1887 in the RM of Mountain halfway between Camperville and Winnipegosis. In 1999 the trailer was hooked up and towed to the north end of Lake Winnipegosis where they took up residence in Dawson Bay for another 20-year stint. In 2019 my parents sold the trailer to Orin and Delores and moved into the Village of Winnipegosis at the south end of Lake Winnipegosis to retire into town.
Despite all of these homes along the shores of Lake Winnipegosis, dad almost never winter fished from home as he had fish camps at Pelican Lake, Denby Point, and Thompson Island. It was at all of these locations that we, his sons and his grandchildren, go to learn the craft of fishing and living the traditional lifestyle that he was raised on at Spruce Island.
The theme here is life centered around the lake and Dad never really did retire even though they moved into “town” the winter season of 2019 - 2020 still saw them fishing out of Duck Bay and the summer season saw Dad once again fill his quota again less than a month on the Windigo. As you can tell fishing was Dad’s life, in 1981 he received an award for being the top pickerel producer for Lakeside Fisheries in Winnipegosis, he also received a plaque in the late 1980’s for his service on the Winnipegosis CO-OP Fisheries (Good Harbour) and in 2009 Dad received an award for 50 years of Commercial Fishing from the Department of Water Stewardship in Manitoba and Manitoba Commercial Inland Fishers Federation. Dad was also instrumental in attending meetings of Manitoba’s Commercial Fishers in the early 2000’s to bring about the change that finally open up the markets to buyers other than Freshwater Fish Marketing Corporation and one of the first to begin filleting the choice pickerel and jackfish to sell directly to consumers. He developed a very loyal customer base from The Pas to Swan River and had consumers traveling from Saskatchewan to meet him in Dawson Bay.
While fishing was his life and no doubt a passion, dad always enjoyed having friends over for coffee, watching western movies, reading an old “dime store” western novel, watching hockey and teasing his grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Darcy is survived by his wife of 51 years Diane Carlson (Bass); sons, Kevin & Florence (Rose), Orin & Delores and Eric Carlson; grandchildren, Amanda Carlson, Logan Carlson, Charlene Dettanikkeaze. Glenda Bickel, John Flett, Roxy Flett, Winston Flett, and Jesse Carlson; great grandchildren, Xzavier Carlson, Roman Sinclair, Connor Sinclair. Skylar, Tristan and Ray-Sean Bickel and Aubrey Dettanikkeaze; sister Zelda-Lyn Marion; sister-in-Laws, Doreen Sliworsky and Dorothy (Tony) Maksymchuk; neices and nephews, William (Lori) Marion, Kim (Joel) Martens, Wayne (Eloria) Marion and Wanda Marion. Sheila Kostenchuk (Corwin) and Bonnie Maksymchuk. Sharon (Wayne) Lytwyn, Barry (Sandy) Sliworsky and Larry (Amanda) Sliworsky; as well as numerous great nieces and nephews and 3 great great nieces and a great great nephew.
He was predeceased by his mother Anna Carlson (Shannon) November 9th, 1968; father Percy Carlson March 30th, 1980; daughter Amanda Gail Carlson September 25th, 1981; granddaughter Charmaine Lee Dettanikkeaze February 28th, 2009
In accordance with Darcy's wishes cremation has taken place and a graveside service will take place at the Winnipegosis & District Cemetery at a later date.
In lieu of flowers memorial donations in memory of Darcy Carlson may be made to the Winnipegosis & District Health Centre at PO Box 280, Winnipegosis, MB R0L 2G0 or Cancer Care Manitoba.
The Fisherman's Prayer
God grant that I may live to fish until my dying day,
and when my Final Cast is made
I most humbly pray,
when in the Lord's landing net; I am peacefully asleep,
that in His Mercy, I may be judged "As Good Enough To Keep".
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Darcy Elroy Carlson, please visit our floral store.
Winnipegosis & District Health Centre
230 Bridge Street Box 280, Winnipegosis MB R0L 2G0
Cancer Care Manitoba
675 McDermot Ave. Room ON1160, Winnipeg, MB MB R3E 0V9