Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

Obituary- Herbert Mosses Duguay July 25, 2015

Filed under: Commentary — Shawn L. Bird @ 5:40 pm
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Herb93bday (2)OBITUARY:


October 25, 1914 – July 25, 2015

Herb Duguay passed away peacefully Saturday, July 25, 2015 in his 101st year. Herb was a devoted father and husband.  He was the son of Charlotte Coombes Mosses Duguay and David Owen Mosses, but raised as the son of Joseph Georges Duguay in Montreal.  He was married to Alison MacMillan Duguay Baker for over twenty years.  He was married to his beloved Lalita Ortlieb Fuson Duguay for fifty-three years.  He had one daughter by birth, Shawn (John) Bird, and three children by the heart, Wayne Fuson, Stewart (Gail) Fuson, and Naomi Verbonac.  He had 8 grandchildren: Veronica, Shane, Lalita, Jolene, Trista, Charlotte, Nicholas, and Kyle.  He had 9 great-grandchildren.

Herb’s first memory was seeing the World War 1 soldiers coming home in 1919.  Around this time he was run over by a brand new Model T Ford. We are thankful for their high wheel clearance.

He was an avid Boy Scout and saw Lord and Lady Baden-Powell when they came to Canada in the 1920s.

In the 1930’s Herb worked in quality control at Burroughs Wellcome Pharmaceuticals. As a result, he was a lifetime believer in the power of Polysporin.

He built bombers at Fairchild Aircraft in Montreal during World War 2 because the army didn’t want him.  They said he had a bad heart.  They were wrong.  Herb was all heart.

He moved to Vancouver in the 1950s to start up Maco Industries with Reg Baker.  For the next thirty years he travelled through Western Canada selling their products to building supply stores.  He was proud of his ethics and the good relations that garnered him respect and openings everywhere, because he only sold products he believed in.  He was still selling in the care home, pitching his daughter Shawn’s books to staff and residents at every opportunity.

He was a travelling salesman who never missed a school performance or event of significance.

Herb never walked past a child’s lemonade stand without buying a glass and chatting.

He always had a good dog to keep him company.

He was an avid tennis and table-tennis player throughout his life.  Though blinded by macular-degeneration, he still played into his 80s with unerring accuracy.  In the last few years, he was the goalie for the award winning Bastion Care Home floor hockey team.  Until two weeks ago, he walked up 2 flights of stairs each day.

He was proud of the letter from the Queen for his 100th birthday.  He was prouder of the accomplishments of his children and grandchildren.

Herb was friendly, funny, honest, kind-hearted, and loyal.  The world is a less gentle place without him in it.  He was truly a “man of worth.”

Thanks to the Bastion Care Home staff.  You were his favourites.

Herb Duguay (age 85) and Teddy

Herb Duguay (age 85) and Teddy

Herb Duguay (age 70) and Shawn

Herb Duguay (age 70) and Shawn

( ^ In that picture he always reminds me of Maurice Chevalier.  Dad loved to sing Chevalier’s Thank Heaven for Little Girls to me when I was little).

Herb (age 40ish) behind Maco with Kinky the dachshund

Herb (age 40ish) behind Maco with Kinky the dachshund

Herb Duguay tennis champion

Herb Duguay tennis champion

He told me he’d won a big tournament in Montreal once.  I just received this photo which I had never seen.  I wish I could ask Dad about it!  No idea of year- somewhere between 1945-55 I’m guessing.  Let me know if this trophy looks familiar!

From the cast photo of A Nautical Knot performed Nov 30, Dec 1-2, 1939 by St Andrews Operatic Society Montreal

From the cast photo of A Nautical Knot performed Nov 30, Dec 1-2, 1939 by St Andrews Operatic Society Montreal

A Nautical Knot was a comic operetta by William Rhys-Herbert.  Dad could not sing a note, but he was filler on stage.  He used to laugh about it.  I believe it was put on by the St Andrews United Church in Lachine, which held its last service Dec 18, 2011.

Vincent Martin, Herb Duguay, Kenneth Dow Boy Scouts Montreal 1930ish

Vincent Martin, Herb Duguay, Kenneth Dow Boy Scouts Montreal 1930ish

Vincent Martin joined the Merchant Marine and was killed Sept 1941, age 26.


31 Responses to “Obituary- Herbert Mosses Duguay”

  1. My sympathies. What a great man with many accomplishments. May God grant you peace and comfort in your time of sorrow and grief.

  2. georgiakevin Says:

    My deepest sympathy Miss. Shawn. Thank you for introducing such a fine man to your readers even as you grieve, thank you.

  3. matt Says:

    I’m sorry for your loss, your dad sounds like a wonderful man. I pray for peace and comfort as you grieve his loss.

  4. Shawn, I am so sorry for your loss. May all celebrate his remarkable life, and know what a wonderful human being he raised.

  5. murrsma Says:

    How blessed your life has been having such a wonderful father…Heaven gained a beautiful soul…

  6. Tiny Says:

    So sorry for your loss. Beautiful tribute to a full life well lived.

  7. narble Says:

    Rites of passage we must all endure.

  8. Maureen Says:

    what a great life…

  9. Darrell Edwards Says:

    my condolences.

  10. nerdlovewords Says:

    Sorry for the loss. He has lived a great life indeed.

  11. atimetoshare Says:

    Sorry for your loss. It sounds as though your dad was a real blessing in your life. May memories of him continue to live in you.

  12. Condolences for your loss of an outstanding father. I’m sending prayers for your strength and solace.

  13. Joanne Corey Says:

    Thank you for sharing the story of your dad’s long and remarkable life with us. Wishing you and your family peace in this time of loss.

  14. rivrvlogr Says:

    Thank you for sharing a beautiful, loving tribute to a man who led a full life.

  15. He was an amazingly strong soul and the trait has passed down to his beautiful daughter.
    I salute you for being strong & introducing him to us while your heart cries.
    He lives through you dear shawn.
    May God grant him peace & happiness.
    Stay strong.

  16. And I send prayers your way. God bless you dear.

  17. […] Obituary – Herbert Mosses Duguay by Shawn Bird – Shawn Bird, a wonderful writer whom I follow, shared the obituary of her father, who passed away just yesterday. He was over one hundred years old, and her description of his life shows a wonderful man who had a big heart and loved his daughter. I appreciate just knowing about him, I appreciate her genuineness, and hope that Shawn will be able to grieve. […]

  18. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family. While such words, well meant, are never enough know that his legacy lives on through you and all you have shared with us here. He would be very proud.

  19. So sorry for your loss. My condolences to your family.

  20. Jarrod C Says:

    Shawn, very sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing this wonderful piece in honor of your father. It seems he lived an amazing life. My thoughts are with you and your family at this time.

  21. Oh Shawn, I am so sorry for your loss. This is a lovely tribute, and I’m very glad you shared it with us. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. Be gentle with yourself and with one another.

  22. P Moorman Says:

    I am so sorry for your loss. Thanks for sharing. May sharing your own words and memories bring you comfort at this difficult time.

  23. msarb Says:

    Shawn, your tribute is beautiful and is proof that this amazing man lives on through you! I am so sorry for the physical loss of your father, but know that everyone who reads this tribute is confident that his spirit is here and his love and caring continues to change the world through you!

  24. Gary Duguay Says:

    Shawn first let me expense my condolences on the passing of your father and how much I liked your obituary. I am an amateur genealogist and was intrigued that your father took the Duguay name. I would be interested in learning a little more, if so contact me.

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