Oliver Benson of Ste. Rose du Lac passed away on Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at the age of 92 years.
A graveside service for Oliver will be held on Wednesday, October 7, 2020 at 2:00 pm in the McCreary Municipal Cemetery, McCreary, MB. All attending are encouraged to bring a lawn chair for the service.
Should friends so desire, memorial donations may be made in memory of OIiver to the Kidney Foundation of Canada
Please note that the Province of Manitoba COVID 19 restrictions are in effect limiting outdoor gatherings to no more than 100 people. Mask use is strongly recommended at both indoor and outdoor gatherings and social distancing measures will be in place.
It is with heavy hearts that we announce the peaceful passing of Oliver Benson on September 30, 2020 at the Ste. Rose Hospital with family by his side. Oliver was 92 years of age.
Oliver was born at Petersfield, MB on September 5, 1928, the eldest son of Burnie and Ruth (Price) Benson. The family moved to the Beaver Dam District in 1931 where he attended Beaver Dam School. When he decided to head out on his own he moved to Ontario where he worked in pulpwood operations and as a guide before returning to the McCreary area to work at the William Fuller ranch.
It was during this time he met his wife of 65 years, Isobel (Maisie) (Gray). He spent a lot of time (and money!) at Molgats Store in Laurier trying to catch the eye of a certain store clerk. Oliver and Maisie were married on May 21, 1955. They moved several times before “pioneering” the farm at McCreary in 1959. It was here that they would spend many years building and growing a prosperous farm. They were blessed with six children- five sons and one daughter who, together with their parents, worked the farm from scratch building it into a viable operation. They operated a mixed farm with dairy cattle, cattle and numerous other animals.
Oliver was a huge fan of old time music; playing the guitar while his dad played the violin at many a dance at Beaver Dam and Sunrise Schools. But his greatest love was his horses. This love began at an early age and continued though out his life. He was a true horseman. He broke and trained many a horse over a span of 70 years for himself as well as many a friend and neighbor. He was one of the best. He was well known for his “horse trading” and could be found at many an auction. He was always willing to haul stock for people, the stock ranged from not just cattle but included anything from llamas to buffalo. He loved to travel the countryside with his truck and stock trailer in tow. He was amazing with horses and was often called upon to help fellow horsemen match up teams. One of his many skills was matching up the color and size of the horses to make a perfect team.
He trained many teams of horses for himself as well as other horsemen, but his biggest pride was his Percheron team of Barney and Billy. Oliver and his team enjoyed giving wagon rides. They were asked to give rides at many events such as the Lily Festival in Neepawa. Oliver and his team were seen in many a parade in the area as well. He was so proud of the many ribbons his horses won. He spoke often of his “seven color” horse King, he too was a source of pride for Oliver. Oliver was a sociable man who always had a story to tell; even if you told him you had heard it before, well he would go ahead and tell you again with a “little twist”. If it wasn’t a story, he would correct you on direction anytime.
In 2001 Oliver and Maisie decided it was time to “retire” and turned the farm over into the very capable hands of their youngest son, Roy. They bought a house in Ste. Rose but it didn’t take Dad long to realize that town life wasn’t for him, so he continued to go to the farm to help Roy. Between helping Roy with the field work, auctions, catching moles and trapping beavers, he kept himself pretty busy. His love of music continued and the house in Ste. Rose was always filled with fiddle and old time dance music. Sometimes it was played a little too loud at family gatherings!
Oliver is survived by his wife of 65 years Maisie, sons Dave (Elaine), Rick (Sherri), Ken (Joanne), Elaine (Dean), Gord, and Roy (Deborah), as well as 15 grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren.
He was predeceased by his parents Burnie and Ruth Benson; brother Oscar; sisters Eunice, Audrey and Margaret; his grandson Darren and daughter in law Cheryl.
Oliver was always interested in his family’s lives, whether it was wondering how many calves Roy had, how many bales of hay he put up or how many cords of wood Ken had cut for the year.
His grandchildren were special and he was always glad to see them. He was always interested in what they were doing, especially in how they were doing in their hockey. He would wait anxiously for Mom to come home to tell him the score of the game and who got the most penalties. (NOT his grandchildren of course).
Oliver was never happier than when he was sitting at the kitchen table having a meal or a cup of coffee with friends and neighbors. He was a hardworking man who enjoyed the simple pleasures in life.
Rest in Peace Dad
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Oliver Carl Benson, please visit our floral store.
Kidney Foundation of Canada - Manitoba Branch
1-452 Dovercourt Drive, Winnipeg MB R3Y 1G4