Lyle grew up in a small community of Fingal, Ontario, close to the north shore of Lake Erie. He was married to Nancy Norton, and they have 4 children.
After high school, Lyle worked for the Bank of Montreal for two years and then went back to finish his high school (grade 13) in Thomas, Ontario. Then for the next nine years he studied at the University of Western Ontario, London. (B.A. general science 1965, M.Sc. Zoology/Genetics 1967, Ph.D. Biochemistry 1971).
Lyle worked for 30 years as a Research Scientist, Government of Canada, Freshwater Institute, University of Manitoba, 1971-2001. During this time, he did research on water pollution and its biological effects on aquatic life, especially in Northern Canada; prepare publications and presentations on pollution issues. He was also an Adjunct Professor, University of Manitoba, training post-graduate students, and teaching “Environmental toxicology” course.
After retirement in 2001, Lyle did private consulting, for about 10 years, mostly on Arctic issues, and teaching 55-plus classes, at the University of Winnipeg.
Lyle also enjoys getting involved in community activities such as Winnserv Inc., Shalom Residences Inc., St. Mary Anglican Church, Science Club at Creative Retirement Manitoba, Lake Winnipeg Foundation, East Interlake Watershed District, Woodhaven Menshed.
Lyle continues to be very active and has many interests such as conversation, cooking meals (since his wife died in 2016), family members (4 children, 4 grandchildren), family history (including DNA), writing his life history, maintaining a daily journal, science and presentations about science topics, house and cottage carpentry, making wooden pens, Toronto Blue Jays, photo editing, Wordle game, Sudoku puzzles, easy crossword puzzles. He says, “I like to walk but have had to give that up. I despise my exercise bike”.
Due to failing peripheral nerves, especially in his legs and feet, for which there is no treatment, he is learning to cope with progressive deterioration in balance and mobility. He says, “I walk with a cane, and I use a walker most of the time. I still live in my house and drive my car. I use my garage workshop most days, but I undertake only small projects now”.
I was born & raised in Winnipeg to a Scottish, English & Dutch family. (We were diverse even then LOL). I attended Silver Heights High and was fortunate to enroll in a BSc program at the U of M. Somewhere during the program I developed a passion for Geology. (I guess I just liked the major and graduated as a geologist). I worked for Inco in Thompson Mb. for 30 years, then retired and went to work doing exploration work for ESSO for another 10 years. I have seen the entire Canadian arctic (which is beautiful).
I was fortunate and blessed to marry Susan, which I met at Expo 67 in Montreal. We have 2 children & 3 grand kids. One family is in Toronto, and the other is in Kamloops BC.
I like to play a round of golf when I can. Susan and I have been fortunate to do a lot of travelling, I guess we have seen both North America and South America, and sailed around the horn and through the Panama Canal, add China and Costa Rico, to that.
I love going to Menshed, just the camaraderie is worth the price of admission.
Lorne Curwen was born in Minnedosa, Manitoba. to the David Curwen family who immigrated to Southern Ont., from England. His Father then bought a farm in the Basswood where Lorne grew up and attained grade 8, when his father had a farm accident, & could no longer farm. Lorne took over the farm duties. In 1958 Lorne was very blessed to marry Peggy Graham from Carberry. Peggy's first teaching job was in Basswood. Through out the years Peggy taught school, and assembled choirs, put on Christmas concerts, and taught many people to play the piano and accordion.
When Peggy was teaching in Crawford Park, Lorne had this calling to be a minister. Lorne attended Bible college in Qu'Applle SK. and got his first job in Crawford Park and Onanole. There Lorne founded a church and practiced his ministry and taught Sunday school. After many term positions in rural schools Peggy finally got a position in Portage La Prairie. Lorne got a job in a flower shop to augment his meager ministry salary. After 8 years the owner suggested for Lorne to take a floral design and arrangement course, which he did and graduated with high honors for his ability. Lorne & Peggy bought the flower shop. When Lorne & Peggy were blessed with a son, they could not go home that evening because they had to arrange flowers for 12 weddings the next day, so subsequently little Michael slept all night on the design table. LOL.
Lorne's high lite of his flower shop days, were designing & arranging bouquets for Princess Margret & Queen Elizabeth when they toured Canada. After 15 years in the flower occupation, they sold the business, & moved to Whitemouth, Lac DU bonnet area. They retired & moved to Winnipeg. Lorne lost his soulmate in 2017.
Written by Andrew Slishinski July 18, 2023
How I Became a Violin Maker by Andrew Slishinski
Once upon a time, when I was growing up in a small town in rural Manitoba, I used to admire the violin players when we used to sneak into the community dances that were held in the local community hall, I dreamt of playing a violin someday. It was a time just after the war, & resources were scarce, let alone spending $12.00 for a violin from Eaton's.
After high school, it was time to earn a living, but I wanted more than just coming into Winnipeg & working in some office for $60.00 a week, so I enlisted in the RCAF, & was fortunate enough to be selected to attend No. 1 Radar & Communication, school, & after almost 2 years graduated as a Ground telecommunication technician with a specialty in radio. With my first posting to Cold Lake, Ab. it was time to do what I always wanted, to play the violin, but a nice blonde lady crossed my path, & then life got in the way of everything. (Surprise, surprise).
In 2001, my spouse (Trud) & I were in Mother's music on Wall St. She was picking up a drum my son had ordered some weeks before, & I was just poking around, when I noticed a nice-looking violin just lying on the floor in a corner. Joining Trud at the sales counter, as were about to leave, I mentioned the violin in the corner on the floor, & I quote Trud to the salesman, " I want to buy that violin, I'm getting tired of him saying he wanted to play the violin for 40 years now". I was floored & said, do know how expensive it is, & I don't know if it is any good. The salesman jumped in & said if you don't like it in a few weeks, just bring it back & I'll give your money back. With a violin in hand & a method book I attempted to tune it up, but it didn't sound that good, so maybe that’s why it was laying on the floor, but my very good friend come over, who is a Bone player, I asked him what he thought, & he said beats me, it’s very bassey, But he said he's on his way to dinner with his cousin who just happens to be a violin teacher, & If I wanted he would take over & see what the problem is. Several days later my violin was returned, with a nice note in the case (which I still have), “Nice job of tunning the violin for a beginner”. It was tuned exactly one octave low.
Several weeks went by when I was in 283 Legion, when I noticed a notice, “Learn to play the violin”. The prerequisites were, over 55, 1 violin & a desire to learn how to read music & learn to play the violin in group lessons. That was for me!!!! After a few weeks, I was sitting next to another student who was having a problem with her violin, & the gentleman that I am, I offered to help. When the repair was done, I was asked if I thought of being a violin maker, which I laughed & never gave it any thought, but it kept gnawing at me, & I started to research it on the internet, when I came across a school in Tucson Az. that was held every year around Easter time for 6 weeks, for us older fellows that wanted to learn violin construction & repair. Now that I was retired, I proposed to Trud, how nice it would be for her to lounge around a pool in Tucson while I attended the workshop. It didn't take much convincing her, & over the next 5 years I attended the school, me working 18 hours a day & Trud basking in the sun.
The violin is a very simple-looking instrument & yet so very complex as to why it works.
Andrew has a small violin shop on Whitegates Cres. in Westwood where he makes violins, & does repairs. If you are interested in a handmade violin or viola, Andrew has a nice inventory for you to try. He also welcomes repairs & restoration. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 204-832-9443 for an appointment.