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James “Jim” Leslie Robinson
With family by his side, James “Jim” Leslie Robinson of Bethany, MB passed away peacefully on January 3, 2024 at the Minnedosa Hospital. Beloved husband of the late Greta “June” Robinson, and sons Patrick of Bethany, Danny (Karen) of Toronto, Cory (Hannah) of Castle Rock, CO and Kelsey of Bethany; grandsons Parker, Joey, Sawyer and Colt. He was predeceased by his parents, Agnes “Annie” (Robertson) and Robert Robinson, siblings Minnie, Pearl (Clifford), Phoebe (Jim), Margaret (Oliver), Ethel (Stan), Rob, William, and Allen, and in-laws Walter and Jean Howard, Ross (Vivianne), and Harvey. He was survived by his sister Mary (Maurice) and in-laws Sylvia, Joanne, Bonnie (Reg), and Ken (Sharon) and many nieces and nephews.
Jim was born on the family farm in the RM of Minto, on May 10, 1938. The ninth child of Robert and Annie Robinson, Jim took all his schooling in Bethany and worked for various farmers in the Bethany area during the summers. After finishing school, Jim worked with Manitoba Pool Elevators, Lawrence's Solo Store (Newdale), Canada Safeway (Neepawa) and managed the McLeod’s Store in Minnedosa. In 1969, Jim went into full-time trucking, beginning his own construction business with family.
While at Newdale, Jim met the love of his life, Greta "June” Howard, and they were married in the Neepawa United Church on July 4, 1964. Jim and June were blessed with the birth of four sons, Patrick, Daniel, Cory and Kelsey. They lived in Minnedosa until 1970 when they bought the Tom Madill house in Bethany and later moved to an acreage on the east side of Bethany in 1980. Jim and June celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in the Bethany Hall in 2014 surrounded by family and friends.
In addition to being a devoted husband and father, Jim had a deep love for horses, steam engines, music, and sports.
Jim’s first venture into livestock was in 1968, when he purchased two riding horses and began raising colts. Jim began buying and raising Percheron horses that he would break to drive. Several of his horses were sold at the Waverly, Iowa horse sale, and he enjoyed attending horseshows. Jim took many memorable horseback rides into the Riding Mountain National Park and Rat Lake, and he provided countless sleigh rides for family, friends and community members around Bethany, Clanwilliam and surrounding areas.
Jim began raising Piedmontese cattle for several years and he began doing some farming. Whenever he could, he combined his love of steam engines with farming, building his own steam engine and bringing friends and family together for a traditional day of threshing with his steam engine each fall. He also frequently attended the Manitoba Agricultural Museum’s Thresherman’s Reunion and Stampede in Austin and other steam engine gatherings with family and friends.
Jim was a talented musician who enjoyed playing and listening to music all through life. In his early years, he dreamed of going to Nashville, and played his guitar and sang at social events. Later in life, he entertained frequently at the Minnedosa Care Home during the years June resided there, and he was known for bringing his guitar out to play alongside his sons, grandsons and other friends, even in his final years.
Jim enjoyed sports, avidly watching hockey and curling and, in his earlier years taking part in curling, hardball, hockey and skidooing. Much of his time was spent watching his boys play hockey and gathering with his family to watch Winnipeg Jets games and Toronto Blue Jays games.
Jim migrated from being an avid hunter in his youth to becoming a dedicated bird and wildlife watcher in his later years. In the early hours of the morning, he loved to turn on his radio in the kitchen to enjoy a nice plate of toast, cup of coffee and a game of solitaire before starting his day.
As a Grandpa, Jim had a special place in his heart for spending time with his grandsons. To his younger grandchildren, he was seen as the cowboy grandpa who lived on a farm and had horses. He gave them the best snacks, especially pudding snack cups, he would always get old cars and trucks for them to play with, and he loved to get out his guitar and play and sing songs for them. For his older grandchildren, he taught them everything from baking to handling guns and shooting properly, to showing them how to drive and handle a vehicle on back country roads. He was a man of knowledge and life experience, and much like his wife, June, he enjoyed sharing it with others.
Jim was a dedicated community member, serving for several years as a Director and Vice-President of the Bethany Community Centre, and serving as a member and volunteer at the Austin Agricultural Museum.
Funeral Service will be held at the Bethany St. Johns Anglican Church on Saturday, June 15, 2024 at 2:00 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, donations to Bethany St. Johns Anglican Church and Bethany Community Centre would be appreciated.
Bethany Community Center
c/o Callie Mendrikis, PO Box 1203, Minnedosa MB R0J 1E0
Bethany St. John's Anglican Church
c/o Janice Burnside, PO Box 517, Minnedosa MB R0J 1E0
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