On August 4, 2021, Mr. Michael Carl Zagrobelny of Minitonas, MB, formerly of Hudson Bay, SK, passed away at the age of 66 years.
Michael was born on August 17, 1954, to a Polish immigrant father and a Canadian mother in Canora, SK. He was raised on a farm in Hudson Bay with the childhood nickname Mitchco, which his family affectionately referred to him throughout his life.
The third-born of nine children, he became a primary caregiver to his younger siblings after the dissolution of his parent’s marriage. While attending school and assisting his father on the farm, he would ensure their bellies were full, school lunches were packed, and clothes were clean and mended. He also hand-stitched doll clothes for his sisters and purchased a bike for his twin brothers to share.
At the age of 18, Michael took his first official job at the wood processing plant MacMillan Bloedel Limited in Hudson Bay in 1973. He was introduced to his future wife Rosemary, by his sister Carol, in March 1976. They married on September 3, 1977, and made their home in Hudson Bay. Their first child was born in November 1979 and in January 1980, they moved to Kindersley, SK where he began an era of working in the oil patch - he spun pipe, hauled rigs, and worked as a derrick hand. During these years, Michael and Rosemary had three more children - their second in April 1981, a third child in January 1984, and their fourth in June 1985. In 1995, wishing to be closer to his family again, they relocated to Minitonas. He spent a year hauling manure for Raymond Terry before taking a job in 2006 for Ken Oberlin as a truck driver, mechanic and unofficial safety inspector. In the spring of 2002 he began working for John Eisner in Minitonas at the PMU barn, before becoming a trusted farm hand putting his skills to work as a logging trucker, mechanic and grain hauler, among other tasks.
In March 2016, an injury forced Michael to retire. There he waited for his ‘honey-bunch’ to come home from work so they could cook or bake together. He became a birdwatcher, giving names to the neighborhood birds he loved to watch and acquiring a collection of feeders that eventually he would take down because he couldn’t bear to see the little birds be preyed upon. He spent his time maintaining his yard, tending to his hobby garden and a plethora of potted petunias. He gave his growing list of grandchildren nicknames and cherished the time spent with them at home, the playground and in the mountains fishing.
He will be missed by those who loved him most for his constant helping hand, his delicious home-style cooking and baking, a reliable fishing buddy and loving father and grandfather.
Michael is survived by his loving wife, Rosemary, of 43 years; his four children: Kevin and wife Lori of Winnipeg, MB; Karien and husband Kristopher, their children Hayley, Brandon, and Emily of Yorkton, SK; Kristopher and wife Lori, their son Gunnar of Minitonas; Twyla Dawn and husband Ryan, their children Gylfa, Jack, Anna and Rodimus of Kenville, MB; his mother, Pauline of Brandon, MB, as well as his brothers and sisters and their families, Orest of Saskatoon, SK, Brian of Kelowna, BC, Carol of Brandon, Veronica of Saskatoon, SK, Paul and Jean of Hudson Bay, and Joan of Prince Albert, SK.
He is predeceased by his father Michel Zagrobelny and brother Peter both of Hudson Bay, and infant granddaughter Sophia Zagrobelny of Minitonas.
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Swan Valley Sport Fishing Enhancement Inc.
Box 120, Swan River MB R0L 1Z0