Condolences to Debbie Ecklund’s loved ones
We are sad to report that Debbie Ecklund of Whitewood, Sask., passed away September 24. Operating under the ranch name of Calico Cattle Co. Ecklund raised Simmental cattle for many years. You knew you’d always get a chance to catch up with her at Canadian Western Agribition and have a visit.
As Bruce Holmquist, general manager of the Canadian Simmental Association, says, “Debbie was a great cattle person and a friend to a lot of us. She usually had a smile and twinkle in her eye with a great personality. She was just a person that was fun to be around.”
Debbie could outwork most people and then play just as hard once the work was done. No one could dance in a pair of Carhartts any better.
Her eye for cattle and skill handling them was also second to none. She is survived by her husband Danny Thomas, her three children and their families. From all of us at Canadian Cattlemen, our condolences go out to the entire family.
Condolences to Jean Minchau’s family
Our condolences go out to the family of Jean Minchau on her sudden passing October 10. Jean, along with her husband Allan and daughters Lacey and Allana, ran the 7A7 Minchau ranch at Spring Coulee, Alta. I first met them when they ranched just west of Millet, Alta., before they headed to Spring Coulee in 2007. At that time they did dabble in the Hereford business but stuck mainly with commercial cattle, Hereford-based of course!
Minchau’s own ranch roots go deep being raised at the ranch around Cremona by her father Bob McDougall and the late Gina McDougall-Cohoe (deceased 2014). Gina McDougall-Cohoe is a name synonymous with the Calgary Stampede, having commissioned championship trophy bronzes for 20 years and also having been inducted into the Canadian Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame.
From these roots Minchau always felt blessed to have grown up riding amongst the Wildcat Hills and Devils Head close to Cochrane, the Crowsnest Mountain in Crowsnest Pass and then Chief Mountain, which she could see from every hill on the ranch.
She loved riding, working cattle and sharing love and laughs with family and friends. I will always remember Jean Minchau as a person with a big heart, an even bigger smile with a twinkle to match. She epitomizes all that is good in ranching and was a real genuine person. The ranching family has lost a great one!