Obituary of Leyman Murdoch
More fondly known as Curly, Leyman Telford Murdoch, was born in the dead of winter on December 21, 1924 in Tiny Township, Wyevale, Ontario to Gilbert and Catherine Murdoch (both predeceased). The youngest and last surviving of seven siblings, he is predeceased by Edith, Creighton (Margaret), Burwood (Irene), Melville (Hazel), Grace, and Mable (Cecil). He spent his early years living on the family farm with those siblings who hadn’t yet moved out, and attended their local school. He told many stories of the hard work that was part of life on the farm, the other kids in the neighbourhood; particularly the girl who peed in his little red wagon, and the harmless fun he had in school dipping pigtails in inkwells, among other things.
As a young man, he spent winters in Larder Lake, Ontario working for his brother Mel driving taxis and school buses, and he spent summers working on the family farm with the herd of Aberdeen Angus cattle they proudly kept and showed. He would make the move to Larder Lake more permanent after Bert moved there to open a garage, and offered Curly a job to become a mechanic, which he did from 1949 until 1959.
Larder Lake was where he met the love of his life, and wife of nearly 70 years, Anna Bernice (n. Johnson). They built a beautiful life together, truly embodying unconditional love, always living a humble but full life, rich with friends and family. Together, they welcomed three children into the world; Rick (Debbie), Dean, and Kathy (George). Curly secured a job with the Department of Highways in New Liskeard in 1959 and the family moved to New Liskeard to join him shortly thereafter in 1960.
He retired in 1984 which allowed him to take on the role of “Grandpa Curly” to Ricki, Roxanne, Michael (Brittany), Melissa (Jordan), Laurie (Jonathan) and Robert (Chloé). In recent years, he was fortunate enough to gain another title; “Great-Grandpa” to Telford, Elliot, and baby Donaldson (due to arrive any day). He created many amazing memories with his grandkids; taking them to see the train, to Porky Watters’ farm for pony rides, or touring around on the skidoo with a sled full of neighbourhood grandchildren.
To keep busy in his retirement he also worked fixing golf carts and shuttling cars across Ontario. Anything with a motor was welcome in his garage, and he would spent hours tinkering and wrenching to fix whatever it was that he or his neighbours needed repaired. In addition to Grandpa, Great-Grandpa, and Mr. Fix-It, he was also an exemplary member of his community and embodied the meaning of a good neighbour. He was a proud member of the Larder Lake Fire Department (1951-1959) and New Liskeard Fire Department (1960-1990), a Lifetime Member of the New Liskeard Lions Club and enjoyed attending St. Paul’s United Church.
Curly passed away peacefully on July 17, 2019 the same way he lived his entire life; as a true gentleman. He was blessed to close out his 94.5 years with cherished family by his side and others sending their love from afar. He didn’t waste a single moment of his time on this earth, ready with a joke for every occasion, always being dressed to the nines, and if you asked him, he was always happy to “wake up on the right side of the grass”.
Above all else, he was proud of his family and loved hearing about their accomplishments. Curly never missed an opportunity to share his latest joke or offer some advice – he also never missed a serving of dessert, particularly if it was a lemon pie. He will be deeply missed by all who knew him; friends, the coffee boys, neighbours and particularly family members, including too many nieces, nephews, and great nieces and nephews to list.
Cheers to a life well lived Curly, you were one of a kind!
The family would like to extend profound thanks and gratitude to the attending paramedics, Doctor Corneil, Doctor Sayer, Medical Resident Brandon, Nurses Joti, Doris and Cindy, and the rest of the staff at the Temiskaming Hospital who worked hard to make his final stay as comfortable as possible. In lieu of flowers, donations to the Temiskaming Hospital Foundation or the St. Paul’s United Church Accessibility Fund would be greatly appreciated.
Visitation to take place Monday, July 22nd from 2-4 pm at Perrin’s Funeral Chapel.
Funeral service followed by lunch on Tuesday, July 23rd starting at 11 am at St. Paul’s United Church.
If desired, donations to the St. Paul’s United Church Accessibility Fund will be gratefully acknowledged.