David John (Dave) Shepell
Passed on May 23, 2021
August 1, 1938 – May 23, 2021 It is with the greatest of sorrow that we announce the somewhat sudden passing of our dad, our grandfather, and our great grandfather. He passed away at Stonewall Hospital with his family by his side.
David is survived by his daughters Brenda (Norman) and Charlene (Joey). He also leaves behind his grandchildren Jordan (Sarah), Anders (Melissa), Geri-Lynn (Trevor) and step-grandchildren Derek (Laura), Kaitlyn (Ryan) and Keith. The loves of his life – the great grandchildren – Abby (Cayden), Emma, Madison, and Kenzie and his step grandchildren, Lucas, Colby, Carson and Zayden. He also leaves behind his god daughter Susan, his only sister Betty, brother Warren and sister-in-law Patricia as well as Vanessa. He will be greatly missed by numerous nieces, nephews, relatives and many, many friends.
Dad died of a broken heart and was predeceased recently by his wife of 62 years Marjorie, his only son Gerald in 2016 and the very recent passing of granddaughter Jassy. He was also predeceased by his parents Stanley and Anne, brothers Walter, Joe and Charlie.
Dad grew up and was raised on a farm in the Fisher Branch area. He attended McMaster Elementary school and left after completing only those grades in order to help on the family farm. The work was hard and times were tough, nothing came easy. This would shape his life and instill the work ethics he was known for. When not farming he worked with his brother Walter in the winter months hauling wood in Hudson, Ontario.
He was married in 1958 to our mom. They eventually settled in Stony Mountain in 1967 and raised their 3 children on Prince Street. They made the move to Stonewall 20 years ago and he remained in their home until his passing. He began his road construction career with BACM, followed by over 50 years with Mulder Construction. This took him to every single highway in Manitoba and NW Ontario in the course of his employment. He drove every piece of equipment but eventually became the man behind the asphalt plant. Today there are hundreds of people who were taught some facets of the construction business by our dad including the grandsons, one of whom follows in his footsteps.
We always joked about his “9 lives”. A serious highway accident with a backhoe, he was shot through the lung with a bolt that came loose from a chain, was electrocuted trying to assist a young worker, numerous farm accidents, and likely many other incidents we never knew about. Dad never gave anything a second thought. He healed up and would be back at work in short order. He worked until he was 78 years old. Had his eyesight not failed him, he would still be working.
In recent times he kept in touch with nephews Arthur and Murray with great interest on their farming progress. He liked his tv game shows, and Curse of Oak Island which Norman had recently got him hooked on. He loved his phone calls with sister Betty as they reminisced about their younger years and never missed a call to Susan to report on the Jets game.
Dad’s life was his work and his work was his life. We are forever grateful to those of you that stayed in touch with him until the end. He was laid to rest beside his wife at the Rockwood Cemetery on Friday May 28, 2021. Our heartfelt thanks goes out again to Ken Loehmer for the caring and compassionate service he has provided to us. We would also like to thank Dr. Hicks who cared for Dad like no other doctor ever had. Thanks also to all the great staff at Stonewall Hospital we encountered during the past week.
May 30/21 - My heartfelt and sincere condolences on the passing of your wonderful Father, Grandfather, Brother and my cousin David. Also - my Tribute to Dave …… When I was 7 years old - my Mother passed away - and - I was sent to live for a period of time with my Aunt Annie Shepell (my Father’s sister) on the Shepell Farm. In addition, after life settled and I moved back home - I often used to go out to Aunt Annie’s Farm for part of the summer. It was in these times - that David became a big part of my life. At the time David was the oldest sibling at home - and - found himself - very naturally looking after the rest of us kids - Charlie - Warren - and - myself - Lloyd. One of my first memories was walking to McMaster School - with David - of course - leading the way and looking after us. 3-Miles each way - even saw a bear - one time - but you can be sure - no fear - David was our protector - believe me - a big deal to a 7 year old kid. David was also the Leader on the Farm - grain - cattle - and - hay. We learned to work hard - whether it was carrying water up the hill to the house (no electricity or running water) or filling up the trough twice a day - herding cattle - milking or making hay. David was my leader, mentor and the foundation of a good work ethic that carried me successfully through the rest of my life. A little fun as well - trips to the Creamery in Fisher Branch or to the nearest town - Hodgson - on a Saturday night. David was the driver - Chevy 1/2-Ton - and - our guardian - in what were then bustling, busy towns particularly for head-in-the-clouds kids. As time went on - one of my first jobs - was with Mulder Bros - and - yes - you guessed it Dave got me that job. I think as time went on - half the young people from the Interlake worked for Mulder - thanks to Dave. Some things stick with you all your life. Mulder had the contract for gravelling the roads in Birds Hill Park - then being developed - I had work reasons to be there along with Dave - the Boss. I was backing up a 1/2-Ton Truck, carelessly holding the door open, it caught on a gravel windrow and bent the door !! As a teenager - I was terrified - thought I was in very big trouble - but - and yes - you guessed it again - Dave took the situation in hand - saved me and saved my job. Where would so many of us have been - ended up - without good people like Dave fortunately in our lives. I am now 75 years old and one regret I have is that I did not spend enough time with Dave (a lesson to be learned here). On the other hand - one of my best memories - is when I would see Dave sitting down at a Family event - I would sneak up behind him - put my arms around him - and - kiss him on top of his head - as recently as a Family wedding in November 2018. I wish I could do that again ….. Lloyd Schreyer
Brenda and Charlene and family, Sending you our deepest sympathy. Dave and Bernice Henryf
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