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P.O. Box 130, 1 Highland Drive
Flesherton, ON N0C 1E0
Phone: (519) 924-2810
Fax: (519) 924-3614

"Jack" John Raymond Russell

Wednesday, February 12th, 1936 - Sunday, May 12th, 2019
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John (Jack) Raymond Russell –
Passed peacefully in his 84th year, after a short illness at home with his family on Sunday, May 12, 2019. Beloved husband of Marg, honoured father of Kris (Shane) Couture, Karen (Al) Holt, Kate and David (Jessica Ruppel). Loving grandfather to Margaret (Keith Crerar), Michelle (Justin) Hutchinson, Alan Holt (Justine Bolen), Marley Holt, Levon Kinsman, Lauren (Kevin Girdler) and Alex. He was the greatest great grandpa to Peyton, Kaiya, Tristan, Wyatt, Baxter, Naomi, Ronan and Layla.
Jack’s early career included time as a draftsman with Kilborn Engineering, surveyor at DeLeuw Cather and later as a contract engineering technician and inspector. Jack and Marg moved to the home farm on the West Back Line outside of Flesherton in 1973 with a young family eager to learn the farming life. Jack played hockey with the Lakeshore Merchants in the early 1950s and carried on playing for the Flesherton Saints until retiring his skates. A long time golfer, he was Mens & Seniors champion at local clubs for years where others sought to best his game. He loved his family, mathematics and doing the daily and weekly crossword and reading the newspapers front to back to keep an eye on world affairs.
Arrangements entrusted to Fawcett Funeral Home. Visiting will be held at Fawcett Funeral Home, Flesherton on Thursday, May 16 from 9:30-11:00am. Celebration of Life will follow at 11:00am. To honour Jack, casual dress, no ties please. Cremation has occurred. Entombment at McNeil Cemetery in Priceville at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations to The Royal Canadian Legion Flesherton-Markdale Branch 333 or South East Grey Support Services or a charity of your choice would be greatly appreciated. Online condolences and tributes at 888-924-2810
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Service Details

  • Visitation

    Thursday, May 16th, 2019 | 9:30am - 11:00am
    Thursday, May 16th, 2019 9:30am - 11:00am
    Fawcett Funeral Home
    1 Highland Drive
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Thursday, May 16th, 2019 | 11:00am
    Thursday, May 16th, 2019 11:00am
    Fawcett Funeral Home
    1 Highland Drive
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    Mr. David Fries
  • Interment

    McNeil Cemetery
    633405 Artemesia-Glenelg Townline
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email


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Private Condolence
Dallas, Crystal, Madeleine and Beulah sent flowers to the family of "Jack" John Raymond Russell.
Guaranteed hand delivery by a local florist

Marg Holt-Crerar

Posted at 06:42pm
It is always a shock when someone you love, leaves this world. This is a blow that was dealt to our family this past Sunday. Though my Grandpa Jack is gone from this world, I find a lot of comfort knowing he lived life on his own terms. He knew the true essence of what the most important thing in life was - family. He treasured the one he created with the love of his life - my amazing Nana.

As his grandchild, you could feel the love he had for you in the first few seconds in him greeting you. He would enthusiastically jump up to embrace you with a giant hug and kiss. He would always tell my sisters, cousins and I how beautiful we all were, always crediting my Nana for our good looks. Grandpa was also always excited to hear about what we were doing in life - from early preschool adventures through our adult journeys. He wanted to know what we were up to, if we were happy doing it and to let us know we were doing it great. There was nothing he was more proud of then his loving wife, my beautiful nana, his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

I will forever remember spending time with my nana and grandpa growing up. The nature walks we would take, learning about the wildlife around us he was always willing to teach. Grandpa Jack was an avid sports enthusiast, who could tell you anything about any sport. He tracked stats and cheered on his favorite hockey, baseball, golfers and numerous horses and horse racers year after year. We would watch many sporting events, and he would take any and every opportunity to work on his golf swing and short game. We had countless family dinners and time together to celebrate birthdays, and major holidays. Their door was always open for us to stop in and visit.

In creating this family, and impressing upon us the simple values of family and love, Grandpa will never be gone. His love will continue through us in the life lessons he taught, the memories we made with him and the the love for him that we all continue to hold dear.

Margaret Holt-Crerar

Marley Holt

Posted at 06:35pm
When you need to talk and there is no one to listen it makes you so sad. I have wanted to speak about my grandfather during this time.

He was a big influence on all of us which has left a large emptiness in the family. The many children seem to fill it up whenever they are around. That is how God intended life to be. I am trying to keep grandpa Jack in mind. I try to communicate all those things I hoped to tell him while he was living here with us. When I picture him now he is always happy. I believe that he is very proud of our family. When I find him in my dreams he is often playing music. Our legacy will be the laughter and music and wonderful celebrations we’ve shared as a family.


Kate Russell

Posted at 11:20am
It began with the poem of him
a star came down to earth
lit the heart of a young man
blessed him from his time of birth

Aquarian idealist with a vision
to farm with family in the soil
sparked the vigor of a young father
shoulder to the plow of toil

Strong character opinionated
spoke to all with kind respect
open to the thoughts of others
with the skeptic's circumspect

I cut my teeth independent
as with him I would debate
found my voice of fortitude
foundation upon which to create

His strength was an inspiration
push ups on knuckles on the floor
swung his clubs in the living room
as his "Little Monkey" climbed the door

I see him so clearly young and healthy
driving the tractor - long hair in the breeze
or digging in the back garden
growing his plants with green-thumb ease

The Saints came rolling in for him
to shake up his stick-handled puck
golf greens and long drives home
all fell closely within his luck

Jake the Snake they called him
or sometimes just Catfish Jack
of lifelong friends he had many
they all knew he'd have their back

Some have gone before him to prepare
party of souls an eternity long
he's gone to see them all again
so here ends his life's song

There's a hole where his star went
to shine bright again so high
a piece of my heart went with him
to dwell with him in the sky

Yet a piece of his heart is in here
and sparkles in all our family
the roots and branches and leaves
of the ever-growing Russell tree

Look around you and see him
in the smiles, laughter and tears
he's there when you hug a loved one
and remember him through the years

Always loved and never forgotten
Bye Bye Daddy
Until we meet again...

Kris Couture

Posted at 10:43am
83+ years of the one and only Jack Russell! Thank you to everyone for your outpouring of love, floral tributes & food and sharing your memories. The Fawcett's & Staff and Celebrant David Fries orchestrated a perfect Celebration of Life. Here's my Dad Story...

I am Jack Russell’s daughter Kris - he called me Krissie.

It’s so wonderful to see everyone here today. All week through the outpouring of love, there’s been a common theme: EVERYONE has a Jack story. Please continue to share these tales with us when you have a moment and for now I’ll share some family memories…

My Dad was a life-long ‘health-nut”, adamant his kids get a healthy start in life. Absolutely NO SUGAR as children (oops, I’ve made up for it since) AND, Dad was an anti-vaxer before it was “in vogue”. Sure, Karen and I DID end up with mild whooping cough BUT our healthy start as children has made us ALL very robust adults. Thanks Dad!

Our father loved the outdoors. We frequently picnicked, swam, skated and tobogganed. Even in the depth of winter he would say “Go outside and get some colour in your cheeks!” We started camping when David was around 3. Jumped right in with an east coast tour in a floorless boy scout tent from Dad’s older brother Bill – a longtime Scout Master. Quite the adventure – think National Lampoon’s vacation movies, complete with our own Chevy Chase.
PLENTY of hilarious moments capped off with a deluge of rain one night almost washing away our tent. The Russell Clan took refuge in a sketchy motel – soaked but sense of humour intact. Thanks Dad!

The next year the vision was to head WEST for a similar adventure, BUT an Ontario camping trip was wisely chosen instead. Among his many skills, Dad was a surveyor. He bartered his services with then-owners of Duncan Lake in exchange for free camping at the lake. Enamored with Beaver Valley, Dad and Mom soon realized their dream of farm-living. Our experiences in farming are chronicled elsewhere (I’ll make a shameless plug for the book ‘Grey with a Silver Lining” available at the Flesherton Library) but, suffice to say, we consider ourselves “locals” now. Thanks Dad!

You see a sampling of my Dad’s memorabilia here: he lived for his sports! I truly believe it kept him going these last few months. SUCH a competitive spirit relishing the excitement of participating, spectating – and yes betting! Ask Levon about the annual football pools – I don’t know the exact stats over the years, but I think Grampa won A-LOT! He certainly was proud that his sports-mindedness was passed down to his grandson Levon through his ‘sporty femme’ daughter. Thanks Dad!

Anyone here familiar with the tune “In a Gadda Da Vida” by Iron Butterfly?! Ohhh weeee arrrrre! My Dad and Mom’s house parties were legendary. Rock and country music blasting, libations flowing, et cetera… Now and again, Dad would strum on the guitar and sing as you have seen. We were all infused with a deep passion for music, yet it is Rockafeller David who REALLY inherited the Music gene. Thanks Dad!

You are what you eat, and except for this last while when he took sick, Dad always had a huge appetite for healthy food. He was particularly zealous about fruits and vegetables – good advice for everyone! Luckily my Mom is an excellent “home chef” and loves to cook. Every family celebration – and there are many – is centred on tasty, wholesome vittles. Thanks Dad!

And this man had the strength of his convictions! Passionate about the environment and opinionated, to say the least, about politics and the state of the world. In Archie Bunker-style from his recliner (you’ve seen the photos) he loudly voiced his world-view when watching the news. Although overwhelming at times, Dad’s fervent principles of fairness and justice were imparted to us all, especially to writer/journalist Kate. [If you’ve ever debated Kate, you’ll know this to be a fact…] He was big on freedom and freewill and he accepted and supported us all whatever path we chose. Thanks Dad!

When you beget four children and raise them with unconditional love and appreciation for the importance of family, your children are naturally influenced in turn. This is certainly the case with the Russells: 7 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren with nurturing Karen leading the way. You’ll hear affirming words from Karen’s daughter, Margaret, the eldest grandchild, about her inspirational grandfather. Thanks Dad!

We are beyond appreciative you are all here today. My Mom has been so consumed and immersed in the care and concern for my Dad during his illness these past months that she really did not have a moment to reflect on her 60-plus years with the one and only Jack Russell – until now. It is wonderful and so very heartwarming that her memories are being refreshed and cherished through this celebration of life. My Dad was certainly a character, and my Mom was his EVERYTHING. Mom saw to his every need and whim over the last few months – okay, make that their entire life together. So now, on behalf of our whole family, and especially my Dad, THANKS MOM! Love you!

~Krissie xo

Ken Pinch

Posted at 07:39pm
Thanks Karen for letting me know about your father. Jack and my father, Bruce Pinch, met when working at Kilborn. Although Bruce was 18 years older then Jack, they took a liking to each other and became good friends. Many poker games at Jack's house and good times on the golf course. Jack would often talk about the Kilborn lunch time baseball games, where because of so many workers wanting to get up to bat, the rule was, you were allowed one hit only. Well, Bruce would hit fowl ball after fowl ball just so that he could stay up to bat longer. Even after Jack left Kilborn, he never let my dad forget what he thought about that tactic. I will miss Jack's twice a year phone calls where he was just checking in and reminding me that he thought my dad was one of the best ever. Jack also reminded me every time I spoke to him or saw him how well he and his best friend Marg got along and enjoyed each other. I'm 14 years younger then Jack, and I always felt like Jack was mentoring me along the way just like my father mentored Jack back in the Kilborn days. Everybody thought you were crazy Jack when you quit your job, left Toronto and bought a farm in the middle of nowhere. But you knew what you were doing, up there in God's Country. Our Condolences, Ken and Bonnie Pinch

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