The communities of South Mountain, and Climax, SK though divided by miles of Canadian soil share the loss of one of their own. Eric Locke, born on Sept. 7, 1927 in South Mountain, died on Sept. 20, 2008 at his home in Climax, SK.
He moved to Climax in the mid-sixties and found a job as a farmworker for Pauline and Maynard Rapley. For several years he worked for and lived with Paul and Connie Desjardins of Climax, Graham and Margaret Higgins of Eastend, and Bob and Leona Kirk of Climax. Eventually, he moved on to work at the elevator in Loomis with Elmer Hildebrand. He acted as the caretaker for the Climax skating rink and curling rink. When he could no longer work in the graindust of the elevator, he found work at the store in Climax with Doug and Hazel Brown. At the rink and the store, he touched the lives of generations of children and adults in the community and in the surrounding area.
He knew everyone by name and he took time to nurture each relationship. He teased, joked, and worked his way into the hearts of everyone that he met. He told the girls they were boys or the boys they were girls. He was one of the coffee-row-regulars who kept tabs on the pulse of the community.
Although he cheered for the Clippers and the Cardinals, the Toronto Maple Leafs were really his team. We will always remember Eric in his royal blue jacket and hat. It didn’t matter to him whether they were winning or losing, Eric was a Leafs’ fan to the bone. Although he was an integral part of the Climax community, his love for the Leafs was a consistent reminder of his Ontario roots.
He was predeceased by his mother Helen, his father Melvin, and his siblings. He is survived by several nieces and nephews in Ontario.
A funeral service was held on Wed., Oct. 8, 2008 at Climax United Church with Minister Shelby Kinrade officiating. The interment took place at Climax Cemetery. The pallbearers were Mike Kirk, Grant Goodall, Reg Smith, Larry Jarman, Les Mything, and Gord Nutley. The honourary pallbearers were all who knew him.
For those wishing, memorial donations may be made to Climax Area Recreation Board for the Climax Community Hall or Climax Skating Rink.
Binkley’s Funeral Service of Shaunavon was in charge of the arrangements. www.Binkleys.com