Daryl James Fehr

Obituary of Daryl James Jim Fehr

Darryl James Fehr, better known as Jim, was born on May 16, 1957, and was the ninth child of Jacob and Helena Fehr of Lowe Farm, MB. He is predeceased by both his parents – Jacob Peter Fehr, Helena Fehr (nee Penner), his oldest sister Katherine Toews (nee Fehr), brother in-law Lawrence H. Dyck, niece Crystal Brady (nee Martens). Jim is survived by 6 sisters and their spouses, Susan & Henry Martens of Winnipeg, Erna Dyck of Lowe Farm, Linda & Helmut Lehmann of Morris, Gladys & Jake Friesen of Surrey, BC, Mabel Maxim & Dan Dickson of Winnipeg, Bernice & Raymond St. Godard of St Jean. 1 brother, Bill (William) & Maria Fehr of Niverville, and brother-in-law Bill Toews of Altona; 17 nieces and nephews, many great and great-great nieces and nephews. Jim passed away peacefully at the Red River Valley Lodge in Morris on October 10, 2022, with his brother Bill by his side. Jim had a special place in his heart for many of the staff who provided his care and activities during his time there. The family would like to thank all the staff at RRV Lodge for the compassionate care Jim received during the eight years he lived with them. A family service will take place, with internment at the Winkler cemetery where he will be laid to rest near his mom and dad. Morris Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. Darryl, or Jim as we came to call him, was born with Down syndrome, which at first seemed might present some challenges but made him the most unique and lovable character of our family. He seemed to stay a baby for a long time because it took a while for him to learn to sit and walk. So, I recall him being my dress up baby when I was very young. Jim was double jointed, so his flexibility made it easy for a 3-year-old to wrap him up and change his clothes-like my own live doll. As a child he was always smiling and happy, never complained unless he was hurt, and always had a soft touch for the family pet dogs and cats. Jim had trouble saying names. He couldn’t say Darryl, so his name became Jim and we all seemed to get new pronunciations to our names as well. Jim and dad loved watching sports and Jim became a great fan of hockey and of course wrestling. Dad and Jim would hold their own wrestling matches on the living room floor and Jim became very good at some of the moves and holds. With his flexibility he could get a scissor hold or a head lock on dad or Bill in no time. Mom loved to tickle and “snack” him to make him laugh. Jim held a special remembrance for announcers at CFAM radio and loved to clip sports news clippings from the newspapers. This was a bit surprising because we didn’t know how much he could read at that time. When Jim was 8, Mom found a special school for Jim to attend in Winkler and gathered other physically and mentally challenged children in the area to go there as well. Mom became the official bus driver to Winkler each day. Jim loved all his new friends and the many activities they did at school. At the age of 18 Jim went to work at Gateway Industries Workshop in Winkler and they always found interesting jobs for him. Again, Jim made new friends and loved to be teased about his girlfriends. Jim was quiet but once he found his voice he loved to sing and could often be heard above the other voices in church or singing Christmas carols with the family. Jim and Bernice moved with Mom and Dad to the smaller farmhouse away from the hog barns after dad’s heart attack in 1970. In 1975 Jim moved into Lowe Farm with Mom and Dad and continued with his job at Gateway. In 1977 a new home was being built in Winkler to be closer to Jim’s work and Mom could retire from her bus route. However, Dad passed away in September that year, so Jim and Mom completed the home and moved to Winkler. Jim lived with Mom until 1995 when Mom remarried. Jim then moved to the group home Mountview in Morden where he lived until 2014. Many thanks to the caregivers Jim had while there. During these years Jim spent many weekends and holidays with Bill, Maria and their family. He learned to ride the bus to visit them in Niverville and they took him on trips with them to BC and Alberta for family visits with his sisters. Bill has always looked out for his little brother, and we thank Bill and Maria for their loving inclusiveness into their family, home and hearts. When Jims care needs became greater in 2014, he moved to the Red River Valley Lodge where he would be closer to some of his family, and he would have the care he needed. Through his years here his mobility issues and cognitive functions decreased but he always enjoyed family visits. It was great to hear him sing along with you to familiar hymns, and he would chuckle and giggle in answer to a conversation. Jim you will be missed but we know he taught us many wise things by being a part or our family. Some of Jim’s favorite expressions: Oh boy, maybe now, what you do today, 2 weeks, where you from, I’m from Lowe Farm being a few of them. We will always remember when on one occasion he had fallen and was sitting on the floor in his room and when the staff asked him how long he’d been there, his reply was, 2 weeks. We still chuckle about that one and others as we remember Jim. We are so thankful for all the memories we have of Jim. He will be missed by us all. Jim, we rejoice that you are now in glory with the one who has prepared a mansion for you
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Daryl James