John was born in Letellier in 1922. He began his musical career at the age of 12, when he learned to play the trumpet in a band of local musical enthusiasts that also included his sister Madeleine on accordion.
During WW2 he was stationed in Edmonton where he played trumpet for the Air Force band for three years. He thanks his lucky stars that a week before he was scheduled to serve in Asia, the war ended.
John learned to play violin in his 30’s. Like many musicians, he brags about taking only a few lessons. His passion for the violin and the trumpet is evident in his commitment to music.
He played in numerous bands, such The Winnipeg pops, The LaVerendrye Band, The Shriners Dance Band and the Belgium Band.
He also formed many bands in which he was a musician, the band director and the booking agent. The bands played at socials, weddings and hotel bars. He is particularly proud of playing three times at the Grand Ball for the Festival du Voyageur in its early years.
After retiring from his job at the St Boniface Hospital, he formed a trio which played at Beacon Hill and other assisted living residences.
We honor John tonight because he was the first director for the Southglen fiddlers. He christened the group with its name and brought many musicians into the band to display their musical talents.
Funeral Service will be held at the Coutu Funeral Home, 680 Archibald Street, on Saturday, February 16, 2019 at 10:00 a.m.
E.J. COUTU & CO. FUNERAL DIRECTORS