Johan “John” Julius Derksen was born on October 26, 1932, to Cornelius & Aganetha Derksen, in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The family lived in the village of Ste. Elizabeth, just East of Morris, Manitoba. Life in his early years revolved around the family farm. It was during these times where he gained life experience that would be with him for the rest of his life. This included love of family and the value of hard work. John never did finish high school, yet this did not stop him. He went on to much more than what a high school diploma could give.
Upon his confession of faith he was baptized June 8, 1952, and was accepted as a member in the Lictenau Mennonite Church in Ste. Elizabeth. Life in Ste. Elizabeth also revolved around the church, where he participated in different church activities such as playing trumpet in the orchestra.
On June 30, 1962, he married Martha Wiens in the Blumenort Church, and the couple made their permanent home in Winnipeg after that, living in the same house they bought together.
John was predeceased by his beloved wife Martha in 2002. He is survived by his son Ken, daughter Nancy and son-in-law Corey MacPherson, brother Conn Derksen and his wife Dinny, sister Mary Unrau and her husband Peter. John is also survived by brother-in-law Henry Enns, and sister-in-law Henrietta Penner and her husband Art, and many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his brother Hank from Edmonton.
John and Martha attended Sargent Avenue Mennonite Church when they settled in Winnipeg, and joined this church in 1969. It was in this community of believers that they formed many lasting friendships, through activities such as curling and bowling.
For over 35 years, John worked for the Hudson’s Bay Company as a shipper/receiver. After leaving the Hudson’s Bay Company, he worked at McDiarmid Lumber until his retirement in 1997.
Upon retirement, John & Martha started to take trips down to Texas, which they both enjoyed. After Martha’s death, John continued to go with his cousin John Wiebe, spending most of the time on the golf course. Summer was spent out on the golf course and winter was spent at the curling rink. After coming through a very serious illness in 2008, he did not stop from enjoying time on the golf course or in the bowling alley. He enjoyed reading, sometimes the same book several times over the course of the year. John also enjoyed music, singing the in the church choir and in the Faith & Life Men’s Choir.
John leaves behind a legacy rich full of dedication, strength, support and love. His love of the church and his friends kept him strong in difficult times. His love and support for his family was first and foremost in his life.
Funeral service will be held on Thursday, March 2, 2023 at 10:30 a.m. at Sargent Avenue Mennonite Church, 926 Garfield Street, Winnipeg. Viewing at the church prior to the service. Interment to follow the service at Sargent Avenue Mennonite Church Cemetery in Springstein, Manitoba
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Mennonite Central Committee.