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GEORGE WESLEY HUGHES
October 5, 1934 – March 31, 2023
With profound sadness, we announce that George Wesley Hughes passed away on March 31, 2023 at Riverview Health Centre, at the age of 88 years.
He is survived by his wife of 64 years - Marlene; two children – Todd (Christine) and Brent (Stephanie); grandchildren – Kaelum, Aidan, Carter, and Paxton. He is also survived by sisters-in-law Audrey Hughes, Shirley Wigeland, Marguerite Erickson and numerous nieces and nephews. George was predeceased by his beautiful daughter Erin Rae in 1986, one of the loves of his life, parents Leonard and Florence, and his brothers Jim and Calvin, and sister-in-law Fran.
Born, the second son, to Leonard and Florence (Neelin) Hughes, Dad grew up in Oakland, Manitoba – just north of Portage la Prairie. The Hughes’ operated a small family farm, raising cattle, pigs, horses, chickens and planted some grain fields. When not working on the farm, Dad attended the “one room school house – 6 miles down the road” and finished up to grade 9, before heading out in the world and picking up odd jobs throughout Manitoba. During this time – Dad began to have interest in becoming a RCMP Officer. He then returned to High School to finish his education, reach that dream.
After High School, Dad found a local job with the Co-op in Portage, before working for the PFRA (Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration). But his dream was always to pursue a Police Officer position. Back then, a recruit with RCMP had to wait 5 years before getting married, so, early in 1958 – Dad headed into Winnipeg to apply for a position with the Winnipeg Police Force. While applying, he was introduced to Chief Stanley, of the newly minted Dryden Police Force. By the end of the day, Dad was the newest member of the fledgling Police Force in Dryden, Ontario.
Interwoven in his life at that time, was a young Portage girl - Marlene St. Goddard. Dad pursued Marlene (Mom) – for a short while, until on July 4, 1959 Marlene and George became married and “The Hughes’, and headed off Dryden to start their new adventure.
In Dryden, many adventures followed. The birth of Todd (61), Brent (63) and Erin (71). Dad purchased a lot on the east side of Thunder Lake and “plunked” a small cabin on it. The “camp” became a favourite spot for vacations, spending time off and welcoming visitors, especially his brother Calvin and family came from Winnipeg! His career in the Police Force prospered and Dad rose to the position of “Sergeant.” He was a well-respected officer within and outside the force.
Dad was active in local community clubs, loved snowmobiling, ice fishing and curling. Mom and Dad had many friends in Dryden. The neighbourhood on Wilde Street was a special place for the entire family. Close friends like the Glenisters, Wilsons, Mosas and Thompsons made it a hard place to leave. But in 1989, Dad retired from the Dryden Police Force after 31 years of service to the town, and they headed west to retire on Vancouver Island.
Eventually they stopped in Nanaimo. They purchased a home on Departure Bay in Nanaimo, and eventually settled into a second house on Elworthy Place …for the next 25 years!
Dad worked a part time job at the local Beaver Lumber store, and soon became the “Employee of the Year” after helping an elderly lady buy a lawn mower, and then offering to deliver it to her house after realizing she had no way of getting the mower to her house. When he arrived with the lawn mower, he proceeded to mow the lawn for her. He made close friends (Nelson and Terry) with other “semi-retired” workers at Beaver. He became an avid golfer and carpet bowler, with his new buddies.
Dad and Mom purchased a fifth wheel, and did many trips to the southern States. But his passion was his family. He (with Mom) often drove and flew thousands of miles, just to be with his sons, their wives and his 4 grandchildren. He always was helping build, fix, or paint …. until he was no longer healthy enough to do so. He loved to help and often asked for a “job list” before he came to visit. If there was no work to do – he would find some.
In the Fall of 2017 – Dad and Mom moved back east, to be closer to family. Initially moving to Lac du Bonnet and then moving to Winnipeg, settling in the Sage Creek area. The last year was a struggle…rest easy now….Dad - dance with your Daughter and play crib with your Brothers!
In Accordance with their wishes, cremation has taken place and no formal service will be held.
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