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Joseph Augustine Lagace
September 11, 1935 ~ December 6, 2023 (age 88) 88 Years Old
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It is with great sadness that the family announces the passing of Gus Lagace of Swan River,
Manitoba, formerly of Bowsman, Manitoba, at the age of 88 years.
Gus was born in the RM of Macdonald (LaSalle) to parents Joseph and Irene (Bernier) Lagace. The family moved north by railcar in 1939 to a homestead east of Birch River on the Woody River, where they established a small farming operation. Gus attended Steele School until grade 8, when he left school to help on the farm. He worked hard at cutting pulpwood in the winter, and later went north to work for Smook Bros. construction in Thompson. Upon returning, he met Mary Ann Mlynarski, who was a teacher at Steele School, and they were united in marriage in 1957.
After a short stint working for Bureau of Public Roads around Beaver Creek, Yukon, Gus, and Mary Ann returned to Swan Valley where they purchased a ¼ section homestead 5 miles west of Bowsman where they raised 3 children while working tirelessly to build a living on the farm.
Along with usual farming duties, Gus was employed with the Water Resources Branch which saw him building roads, ditches and dikes with a D6 Cat and cable scraper. Gus also did custom bulldozing for many local farmers and most notably was commissioned to build firebreaks on the fire that burned good portions of the Porcupine Hills in the summer of 1980. Gus also manned the fire tower on Whitefish Lake Road for a period of time.
Upon semi-retirement from farming, a retirement home was purchased in Swan River in 2004. Gus retained some land and invested much of his time growing some of the best tasting potatoes, either for sale or donating to local organizations.
Music was always a large part of Gus’ life, and he would often be seen playing his guitar with other musicians at local care homes.
Gus is pre-deceased by his wife Mary Ann.
He is survived by sisters Rachel, Margaret (Ed) Tichon, daughter Cindy (Henry) Orosz, sons Derwin Lagace, Desmond (Gina) Lagace, granddaughter Chloe (Joel) Emerson, great grandson Kater Emerson, and grandson Desi (Taylor) Lagace.
In keeping with Gus’ wishes, cremation has taken place and interment will take place at Bowsman cemetery at a later date.
Should friends so desire, donations in Gus’ memory may be made to St. Columba’s Roman Catholic Church, PO Box 1780, Swan River Manitoba R0L 1Z0.