With great sadness, we announce the sudden passing of Melvin Barkman on Dec. 10, 2016. Melvin was born on July 16, 1944, to Jacob and Anna Barkman in Blumenort, Man. In 1952 the Barkman family moved to the Washow Bay area when he was eight years old.
As a child he attended school and helped on the family farm. Melvin was baptized in the Mennville EM Church as a young adult. He took on work doing road construction as a bulldozer operator in Northern Manitoba for several years. Wanting to settle down, Melvin returned to the Washow Bay area and purchased land to begin his farming career as a hog farmer and beekeeper.
On April 4, 1970, Melvin married the love of his life, Arlene Reimer. They made Mennville their home. He loved his life as a farmer and enjoyed his many trips to Winnipeg delivering hogs and barrels of honey. Melvin and Arlene welcomed five children into their family. As a proud father he spent many hours on the floor playing with his children and feeding them whipped cream and ice cream.
He set a good example to his family by working very hard. He ensured that each one of his children would have music lessons. Melvin loved babies and spoiled each and every one of his grandchildren. He had a special way of drawing them in and enjoyed their attention. He loved nothing more than having his family come visit him on the farm. He enjoyed giving skid steer rides and lawn tractor rides.
Melvin had a strong faith and was committed to his church at Mennville EMC. He served many years as a Mission Board Member and had a passion for Vacation Bible School in Grindstone. He supported his family as they spent many summers at Beaver Creek Bible Camp. He served God through supporting family and friends in his own quiet way. He remained a steady rock when his children walked through difficult journeys in their personal lives.
Melvin persevered through life challenges, including health and farming difficulties. In September 2016, Melvin and Arlene retired from the family farm. He continued to enjoy daily visits to the farm and helping out wherever needed right up to his last day.
Melvin is survived by his wife Arlene; daughter Bonnie (Wes), Katrina and Mikayla; son Brian (Tara), Gabrielle, Austin and Alysse; daughter Wendy (Arnold), Zachary, Annika, Kyanna and Averi; daughter Andrea (Phil), Jackson and Parker; son Dahlen (Coralee), Elizabeth and Zane; his brothers, Ben, Cornie and Jake; his sisters, Elma, Tina, Margaret, Anna and Orla and their families. He is predeceased by his parents Jacob and Anna, sister Adeline, and brothers Abe and Werner.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Mennville EMC Missions program.
– His Family