JÖRG DETLEF HERRMANN
April 1, 1939 - November 2, 2022
Jörg Detlef Herrmann, 83, an oral historian and true original, took his last train ride November 2, 2022 in Russell, Manitoba after an extended period of declining health.
Known as Opa, Jörg, Uncle Joerg, George, and Schwager to his Ukrainian in-laws, he impressed people throughout his life as a natural leader: as a semi-professional soccer player, a multi-facetted tradesman, and a business owner—he was admired by family & friends and colleagues of his old school values, integrity, and honesty.
Jörg was born April 1, 1939 in Berlin, Germany to Otto and Martha (Geisler) Herrmann.
Jörg's father was captured by Russian soldiers in 1944 and was a Prisoner of War, in the Ural Mountains, during his school aged years. Til Jörg was 11 years old he was the man of house. His mother Martha, tended to the survival of Jörg and herself during WWII and until the return of Otto in 1949.
To this day, he would tell of the air raid shelters, the bombing raids, the fear of the adults around them, the hurt and wounded, the bombed buildings. The whistling and hissing noises of the bombs — so real; unforgettable. A vivid memory he shared: a bomb raid over Berlin hit the building to which they were residing. In the basement shelter, as they hid, a bomb hit the apartment block loosening the structure of the building. In the basement Martha dove over Opa to save him as a steel beam fell and was entombed by debris — Martha hospitalized.
He was raised with the support of not only his mother, but Tante Marcian, Grandmother Helene, and Great Grandmother (Babucia) Mari(anna) as they all lived in the same building on different floors. Times were tough during the war, so Jörg became increasingly resourceful. As a child living in Berlin during/post WWII he suffered from hunger, bomb attacks, loss of family members (an Uncle), separation, and fear of death.
The streets of Berlin laden in ruins and ashes after May 8, 1945, the city began to rebuild. Schools were held in Beer Parlours. In his middle/senior years he was educated in Berlin as a Rohrleger-pipefitter. An acceptance letter on intent from the Canadian Government for employment arrived before being conscripted to the three year service as a soldier in Germany army. These events instilled in him a deep and enduring sense of work ethic, self-sufficiency, and family loyalty that only increased as his life advanced.
Upon his arrival to Canada in 1960 on the oceanliner SS Arkadia. Not speaking a word of English — he was placed on a train, sent to Brandon Manitoba, and then stationed in St. Lazare (French Community) — where lifelong, and meaningful friendships were created.
He worked for private firms, the provincial government, and then decided he wanted to become his own boss, owing and operating George’s Plbg & Heating in Rossburn, Manitoba.
Jörg and Adell met at a local dance, which then became history. They were married in 1967. Being a natural craftsman. he constructed and built their family home on Parkview Drive. He fulfilled two terms on Council for the town of Rossburn, along with ten years to the Marquette/Assiniboine Health Region employed as Maintenance personnel while managing his private firm.
His outspoken, direct humour carried him through life. Admittedly, he was a lover of great outdoors, hours of fishing in Northern Manitoba (with Lezslo and Grace), curling (with Wally in Vista), ‘50 cars and music of all genres, playing cribbage, and was always one of the most entertaining — where ever you had the pleasure of being with him. Jörg and Adell never missed a family function, celebration, reunion; Family always came first. He loved the History Channel, international affairs, and could have taught courses on WWII — having lived it in his youth.
The Measure of a Man
The measure of a man is not determined
By his show of outward strength
Or the volume of his voice
or the thunder of his actions
Or of his intellect or academic abilities
It is seen rather in terms of the love that he has
For his family and for everyone
The strength of his commitments
The genuineness of his friendships
The sincerity of his purpose
The quiet courage of his convictions
The fun, laughter, joy and happiness he gives
To his family and to others
His love of life. His patience and his honestly
And his contentment with what he has
~ Grady Poulard
Jörg LOVED his cars: ’48 Chevy Belair, ’58 Ford, 3rd person in the province of Manitoba to own a 1964 Blue Mustang, ’70 Candy apple red Corvette, ’63 Convertible….and the list goes on……. His pragmatic and frugal nature regarding his own needs, coupled with his extreme generosity to those close to him made him so exceptional.
He also has one of the most interesting hobbies imaginable: a collector of trains. He recreated an epic scene from his childhood years in Berlin as a model railroader. The modelling was a way to keep the mind focused on tinkering with electrical components, recreating the scenery, terrain, foliage, trackwork, and railside equipment of what he cherished most.
In his retirement years, he “Cheered-Loud” for the teams close to his heart — European Soccer, NHL, and the CFL—Wpg. And enjoyed the provincial rivalry of the Labour Day Classic and The Banjo Bowl vs Riders—with his daughter's family.
Jörg lived with diabetes and kidney failure the last three years of his life. He experienced hemodialysis for a period of time with frequent trips to Brandon and continued with peritoneal home dialysis with grace, bravery, and strength.
Jörg is preceded by his parents: Otto (1993) and Martha (1997), his in-laws Vasyl (Wasyl) (1969) and Kateryna (Zacharko) (1987) Kalyniuk, and six siblings and spouses of Adell.
He is survived by his Fraushen Adell (Kalyniuk) Herrmann of 55 years of marriage. Daughter Tricia (Michael) Kristjanson—and his grandchildren Emma, Mackenzie (Max), and Bradley. Along with his brother-in-law, Edward, sister-in-law Stella, and many nieces and nephews. His greatest joy was his grandchildren: captivated by the stories that they shared and teasing each other-ridiculously!
Jörg expressed to daughter Tricia, Michael, Emma, Max, and Bradley. And to my beloved friends and family, "How precious you all have been to me. Knowing and loving each one of you was the success story of my life. We will meet again, joyfully, on the other side. To the beautiful day, happy to have been here—whether I was in front of, beside, or right behind you, you will always be in my heart, eternally."
As long as we remember a person,
they’re not really gone.
Their thoughts, their feelings, their memories,
they become a part of us.
Last POEM: Lasting Reflection
Über allen Gipfeln
Über allen Gipfeln
In allen Wipfeln
Kaum einen Hauch;
Die Vögelein schweigen im Walde.
Warte nur, balde
Ruhest du auch.
Wanderers Nightsong ll
(Henry Wadsworth Longfellow translated)
O'er all the hilltops
Is quiet now,
In all the treetops
Hardly a breath;
The birds are asleep in the trees:
Wait, soon like these
Thou too shalt rest.
For a celebration of life; it will be hosted at the home of Tricia Kristjanson, in Foam Lake, SK on November 10, 2022. A playing of his valued Vinyl records, a cribbage game or two, some laughs and moments of memory are welcomed and to bid farwell by a “A sip of Dujardin brandy—chased with sluck of a Warsteiner beer. German style”—Prost!
In lieu of flowers, gifts of honor may be made to
Kristnes Cemetery, Steward: Carl Kristjanson, Box 12, Leslie, SK, S0A 2E0.
Cards of Codolences can be mailed to:
Address a family member of your choice,
Box 615, Foam Lake, SK, S0A1A0
A celebration will be held in Rossburn, Manitoba in the Spring of 2023.
In Our Hearts Forever
Jörg expressed the following from his bedside:
"To my Fraushen, Adell and daughter 'Trixia', Thank you for all the love, laughter, endearing support and standing by me to the very end — Ich Liebe dich."
We love you too, Opa.
Jörg's family kindly requests that all of his friends and relatives take a few minutes to honour his memory by watching the photo-biography above. Please, also consider sharing your own photos, memories, and stories by making use of the comment section on this page.
Memories, Stories and Condolences
Please share a story, photo, memory or condolences for the family by completing the form below and click "comment".