It is with sadness that we announce the passing of Paul Ivor Dalseg at the age of 93.
He died peacefully, at home, with the loving support of family and caregivers.
Paul was born in Rainy River District, Northwestern Ontario on August 5, 1924. His wife Eleanor, with whom he shared a loving and blessed marriage for 50 years, predeceased him.
Also predeceasing him are his siblings, Harley, Norman, Melvin, Roy and Judy.
He will be immensely missed by his son Paul (Martha) and daughter Pam Williams and families.
Paul was a proud grandfather to Chris Dalseg (Sheena), Tim Dalseg (Amanda), Graham Dalseg (Katelyn) and Kirsten Williams (Durrell Borden) and great-grandfather to Eloise, Lachlan and Harrison. They will remember him fondly for his positive attitude and adventurous spirit.
Paul was born to Paul and Bricken Dalseg. He spent his formative years on the family farm in McGinnis Creek. Once WWII broke out Paul waited impatiently to “sign-up”. He was accepted, at age 18, and served with the Royal Canadian Air Force.
He was posted to a Royal Air Force group and trained to fly on Lancaster bombers. He was the youngest of seven crewmembers and served in the position of mid-upper gunner. The crew was posted to Squadron #57 in Lincolnshire, England.
On May 22, 1944 their plane was shot down in the north of Holland and only two crew members survived. Paul served as a POW and was part of the “long march” in the winter of 1945. He gained his freedom in May of 1945.
In his later years Paul would recount his war experience to those who inquired. He prefaced his comments by always saying that his story was only one of many and there were countless others who served that had it much worse than he did. When telling his story he often expressed his gratitude to those who helped him through the tough times. In particular he was grateful to the Red Cross, Veterans Affairs and to the Dutch citizens of Groningen who, to this day, continue to care for the graves of his fallen crewmembers.
After Paul’s return to Canada he settled in Dryden Ontario where he met and married Eleanor Gofton. It was in Dryden where Paul started his business career. He built the local Brewer’s Retail store and managed it for ten years. He saw the potential for an automotive and hardware store in Dryden.
In 1961 he became a Canadian Tire Dealer and opened the store in Dryden. In 1965 he acquired the Canadian Tire store in Port Credit Ontario and in 1971 became the Dealer of the Sault Ste. Marie store.
The Queen Street store was relocated to a new store on McNabb Street in 1974. It was here that Paul was often remembered as the fellow who swept and shoveled the front entrance of the store while cheerfully greeting staff and customers as they arrived in the morning. He enjoyed his years with Canadian Tire and it was clear that it was all about the people.
That philosophy rang true when it came to his community and his interest in finding ways to engage and help make a difference. He was fully supportive and engaged with the United Way, Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club, Canadian Bushplane Heritage Centre, Royal Canadian Air Force Association and the Masonic Lodge among many other organizations. He did what he could to live up to his commitment to build stronger communities and supports for its citizens.
Our family is most grateful to the many people who have provided him health care support in his later years. They demonstrated genuine care for his well-being and shared with him much joy, music and laughter.
Friends are invited to visit at Arthur Funeral Home Barton Kiteley Chapel (492 Wellington Street E, Sault Ste. Marie 705 759-2522) on Sunday, April 22, 2018 from 2 to 4 pm and 6 to 9 pm.
Funeral will be held at St. Andrew’s United Church (712 Wellington Street E) at 11am on Monday, April 23, officiated by Rev. Eun-Joo Park.
In lieu of flowers, The Sault Ste. Marie United Way, Sault Area Hospital Foundation, and St. Andrew’s United Church or a charitable organization of your choice will gratefully receive donations in Paul’s memory.
Expressions of sympathy may be offered at www.arthurfuneralhome.com
Members of the Masonic Lodge are requested to assemble at the Arthur Funeral Home – Barton & Kiteley Chapel on Sunday April 22, 2018 at 1:45 pm for a memorial services for the late Paul Dalseg.