October 28, 1936 - July 20, 2019
Edwin Erich Bergman of Belmont MB, passed away peacefully at the St. Boniface Hospital on Saturday July 20, 2019 with family beside him, knowing he was and would always be loved.
Edwin was born in Winnipeg MB on October 28, 1936 to Jacob and Helen Bergman of La Salle MB. Edwin was the youngest of 3 children, Julius and Hilda were his older siblings. Those early years, the family lived on a small farm near La Salle MB till 1942 when they moved to Belmont in search of more and better land with which to support the family. They found that land when they purchased the Spring Farm and set down new roots.
Edwin met his future wife to be, Helen Ruth Albrecht from Boissevain MB, in October of 1965. On July 2, 1966 they were married in the town of Boissevain. Those first years, Edwin and Helen lived on and farmed land between Belmont and Ninette. Edwin also farmed the land with his dad on the farm he later moved to and lived on till his passing.
February 1969 Teresa was born, September 1973 Bruce was born and the following September 1974, Connie and Deanna were born. These were happy years for Edwin and Helen, as with all young couples starting their families together.
It was in April of 1973 that Edwin bought his dads farm and moved his daughter and expecting wife, here to the yard that he never ever wanted to or would ever leave.
Edwin was very proud of the fact that he built with his own hands the house that he lived in till his final days,. In the spring of 1978, after seeding, he started digging out the basement with the old ford 5000 tractor and loader, then laid the foundation cinder block walls. As the year went on, the house took shape. He called in favors and had neighbors and friends alike help him throughout the different stages. Finally, in October of 1979 the family moved from the old house to the new house where we all could have had our separate rooms, the twins in those early years shared one room though to allow a guest bedroom for when Grandpa Bergman came to stay.
Edwin and Helen farmed a section and 3/4 of land, ran a herd of 60 cows and also fed a continuous herd of around 75 - 100 feeder calves. He loved the cattle and sitting at the auction mart buying calves or selling. In the most recent years, at the auction mart in Killarney when his children sold their calves it was a special time for him, he loved watching the calves predicting their prices, pointing out their defects and on and on. You could see the memories and the happiness in his eyes as he sat there!
By the mid 80’s,farming was getting tougher to make money . Edwin and Helen decided to buy the Belmont Grocery store in 1986. To do so, they put a half section of land up as partial payment for the store. Ed became the grocery store butcher and put his previous home learned meat cutting skills to work while Helen ran the till.
During this period ,the family never took long camping trips, but instead spent many a week at spruce woods provincial park. Edwin upgraded to a heavy pulling 36’ fifth wheel camper with air, a full kitchen and full bathroom and slept 8. He would pull the trailer down there on a Thursday night and breakfast with the family in the morning, then commute to Belmont for day and return about 7:30 for supper and to spend the night, continue this on Saturday then would spend all Sunday relaxing and bring the trailer back home Monday afternoon.
In 1994, the family sold the store for the first time. Edwin held the mortgage on the store, rather taking monthly payments from the young couple that now owned it versus a full payment. 3 years later the couple decided to do something else, so once again, Ed and Helen became store owners and Connie soon became the manager. In 2002 the store was sold again and Edwin retired in earnest.
The period after the first sale of the store till the late 2000’s Ed and Helen took many camping trips. They upgraded to the first of 4 different campers which was a brand new fifth wheel. Over that time span, they made numerous trips to the states. Lots of trips to Alberta and Saskatchewan , a trip to the east coast, and their favorite, a trip to Alaska.
Edwin became Grandpa Bergman or Opa, for the first time In July of 1999 when daughter Deanna gave birth to Micaela, March 2001 Deanna gave birth to Tyler and January of 2002,and daughter in law Jamie gave birth to his final grandchild, Megan. Ed loved his grand children and really enjoyed taking them out for ice cream, then dropping them off at their parents with a full belly of sugar and leaving with a smile on his face!
In December 2008,he suffered a serious heart attack and had triple bypass surgery. A year and a couple months later he had a pacemaker/ defibrillator installed. At that time the doctors didn’t think he would make it too many years due to the damage to his heart and the type 2 diabetes he had which didn’t help either. Edwin rallied back, never 100% maybe 75-80% at best but he never let that stop him. Up till last summer, he would cut or rake hay. He couldn’t do any lifting or hooking up because he didn’t have the strength any more. The equipment instead was hooked up and serviced and ready for him to use and he would go work till he got tired or broke something then he would quit . Bruce would fix or continue after he got home from work. Edwin always enjoyed that time sitting on the tractor. The family often thought, if he died while he was in the tractor, at least we would know he had died happy!
Helen Bergman, Edwin’s mom, suddenly passed away in April of 1976 from a stroke. June 1994 Jacob Bergman, his dad passed away and then sister Hilda passed away in June of 2015, Henry, her husband had passed away a few years earlier. April of 2016 Daughter in law Jamie passed away suddenly and the next month his sister in law Helen, Julius’s wife passed away. All these deaths and loss affected Ed a lot and he took solace in god to help him with the loss of family and the many friends that had slowly one by one taken the hand of god for the walk thru the garden of heaven. He had reflected on his own mortality after the heart attack and had since then taken to being a dedicated member of the church executive along with regularly attending church services here at the Knox United Church.
This spring Edwin began to feel poorly, after a hospital stay in spring and then another beginning a week before his death he was faced with the news that unfortunately there was no way to repair what was ailing him and the multiple medications needed to keep his heart working beginning to be toxic to him in those amounts.
Ed leaves to mourn his passing his loving wife Helen (nee Albrecht), son Bruce Bergman of Glenboro, daughters Teresa (Morley) May of Ninette, Connie Bergman of Belmont, Deanna (David) Spencer of Belmont, grandchildren Megan, Micaela & Tyler; brother Julius Bergman of Boissevain as well as numerous extended relatives & friends.
Ed was predeceased by his parents Jacob & Helen Bergman, sister Hilda & brother-in-law Henry Engbrecht, sister-in-law Helen Bergman and by daughter-in-law Jamie Bergman.
Funeral service will be held on Thursday July 25, 2019 at 2:00 pm in the Knox United Church, Belmont, with Beth Clark officiating. Interment to follow at Hillside Cemetery, Belmont MB.
Friends that so desire, memorial donations can be made in Ed's memory to the Knox United Church Memorial Fund, Belmont MB or to the Belmont Historical Society, Belmont MB R0K 0C0.