Four Generations of Devoted Service
In the Selkirk area and Interlake Since 1935
May 25, 1933 - June 10, 2019
It is with great sadness we announce the passing of Ben Petersen on Monday, June 10, 2019 at Pine Falls Hospital after a lengthy and courageous battle with prostate cancer.
Ben was born in Winnipeg in 1933 to Alfred and Kirstine Petersen. The family returned to their native Denmark for a short period in the mid-1940s, before returning to Canada to farm near Clandeboye. Ben attended Manitoba Institute of Technology in 1951. He graduated and completed his apprenticeship in 1955, becoming a Journeyman automotive mechanic.
It was during these years that Ben would meet the love of his life Beatrice (nee McDonald) while working on his friends’ cars so they could make it to the local dances, oftentimes arriving late himself. The romance blossomed and they were married Sept. 25, 1955.
The young couple decided to seek their fortune on the west coast, moving to Vancouver in 1957, where Ben found work at a General Motors dealership. One of his fondest memories of that time was performing pre-delivery inspections and servicing some of the early Chevrolet Corvettes.
Two years later they returned to their roots in Manitoba, where Ben worked for several automotive/farm equipment dealerships and driving a bus for Winnipeg Transit for two years. Farming was in their blood and they started farming part time in 1962 before taking over the Hubert McDonald homestead near Clandeboye completely in 1965. Over the years the farm was expanded to 560 acres with the addition of a 60 Sow farrow to finish hog operation in 1969, marketing over 1k hogs per year.
Ben and Bea retired from farming and sold out in 1981. Looking for something to keep him busy, Ben intended to perform small engine repair as a hobby, drawing on his mechanics background. This blossomed into becoming the mechanic of choice for many area farmers, servicing and overhauling heavy machinery from combines to bulldozers and tractors for many years until finally retiring (again!) in 2004.
Ben and Bea were fixtures of the Clandeboye community, with a wide circle of friends both young and old, with whom they loved to laugh and share stories with. There were always great parties at the farm, and later at their home on Medicine Creek Road, where Ben could always be counted on to regale his guests with tales (not all tall) and his hearty laugh could be heard across the room. He will be missed by many.
Ben was predeceased by Beatrice in 2010 and his sister Herdis Lindblom in 2018. Left to mourn Ben’s passing: son, Douglas (Mary Anne), grandson James Carter, brother Harry Petersen (Maureen), nephew Erik (Desiree), nephew/Godson Rodney (Carmen) and nephew Kurt (Jana) Petersen, and nieces Donna Henderson (Kim) and Lois Lindblom.
A special thanks to the Pine Falls hospital for their kindness and compassion and the excellent care given to Ben. He was treated as family and loved by all who cared for him.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, June 22, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. in the Gilbart Funeral Chapel, Selkirk, MB.
In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made in Ben’s memory to CancerCare Manitoba.
Condolences may be left on his tribute wall at www.gilbartfuneralhome.com.
Gilbart Funeral Home, Selkirk in care of arrangements.