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John Argue

Obituary of John Allan Argue

Our family is very saddened to announce the peaceful passing of John Argue on July 8th, 2022 at Lakeview Manor in Beaverton. John was in his 94th year and is survived by his loving wife, Lillian (Thornbury). He was the extremely proud father of Cheryl (Sandii), Allan (Lee), and Michael (Deanna). He loved his grandchildren Mark (Jenn), Kirsten (Hayden), Kelsey (Andrew), Shea (Garrett), and Kyle, and adored his great-grandchildren, Jonathan and Rory. John is also survived by his sisters-in-law, Winnie Currie and Verna Thornbury. He will also be fondly remembered by a large number of nieces and nephews and their families. He was predeceased by his parents, William John and Edith Irene (Francis) Argue, and by his siblings, Francis (Kay), Mary (Jack) Newton, and Thelma. John spent his entire life, apart from his recent brief sojourn at Lakeview Manor, on the 14th Concession of Brock. He was born on December 10th, 1928 in a log cabin on Lot 15. His father, William, and his grandfather, John, had previously began their lives in the same, small cabin. The water pump and well, which serviced the Argue homestead and was adjacent to his birthplace, is still operational and 7 generations of Argues have enjoyed pumping the cool water from its depths. When he was a few months old, he moved, with his family, to a larger farm on Lot 22 of the 14th Concession. The years of his youth and a large portion of his adult life were spent on this farm. During his elementary school years, he walked to McIndoo’s School in Mariposa Township. When he reached the upper grades, he was responsible for reporting early to start the fire which heated this one-room school. Perhaps that is why his father allowed him to ride his horse to the eastern end of the 14th Concession Road when he was in Grade 8. He would turn the horse toward home and, after a slap on the buttocks, it would return to the farm. Unfortunately for John, the horse would not come back for the return trip after school. John graduated from the Cannington Continuation School where he became life-long friends with a number of his schoolmates. His remembrances of his high school days always demonstrated a deep respect and admiration for his Principal, Mr. Eldon Beach. Although he was a good student, he also enjoyed participating in a number of youthful high jinks. He often recounted the story when, with his pal, Gordon Apps, he drove his teacher, Miss Delia Scarfone, to distraction as they adlibbed their lines during the rehearsals for a dramatic production. After Miss Scarfone had experienced a sleepless night and some indigestion, John and Gordon delivered the correct lines flawlessly during the performance at the Cannington Town Hall. On other occasions, the allure of the pool hall at the Queen’s Hotel distracted John from his studies! In 1951, John met his wife, Lillian, at a barn dance which followed the erection of the MacAlpine barn north of Lorneville. After a lengthy courtship, which apparently became a family tradition, they were married in Woodville on September 27th, 1958. He was extremely fortunate to become a member of Lillian’s large Thornbury family. With this extraordinarily tight-knit family, John enjoyed reunions, vacations, weddings and anniversaries as well as aplethora of other social activities. John was extremely close to his Thornbury brothers-in-law and joined them eagerly for an annual Brotherhood Fishing Weekend at the Bell cottage in Bobcaygeon. Even the occasional bad batch of Shepherd’s Pie could not distract from the fun and frivolity of these weekends. When his parents moved to Cannington in retirement, John and Lillian worked the farm while raising their young family. His children and Lillian assisted with the farm work. They especially enjoyed helping during the scorching hot summers when thousands of square bales would be gathered and placed into the barn. Perhaps enjoyed is not the appropriate word! The farm also became the rural refuge for the children of John’s siblings. He looked forward to the visits of his sisters, Mary and Thelma, and his sister-in-law, Kay. His “Argue” nieces and nephews have universally acknowledged how much they appreciated their visits to the farm. In the early 1960s, he also began working for what would become the Ministry of Transportation. He thoroughly enjoyed the camaraderie of his workmates and retired in the late 1980s. In 1978, John and Lillian sold the farm and began construction of a new home at his birthplace on Lot 15 where he resided for the remainder of his life. John was a life-long sports enthusiast. He played baseball and hockey as a young man and, later, he became an accomplished curler. He loved regaling us with his stories of the hockey“wars” and, in particular, his battles with the vaunted Woodville Maroons led by Hughie Cameron, Elroy Butler, Eldon McInnis, Jack Sweet and others. He would also often detail the determination and skill exhibited by the Tamblyn and Trent brothers from Cambray. Alongside his chums “Speaker”, Orlie, and “Busher” Nicholson, Chuck McPhadden, “Windy” Shier, Donnie and Paul Grills, Jim Tully, “Smilin’ Jack” Pipher and others, he waded into the intense world of rural Senior Men’s hockey. One of his most impressive sporting accomplishments came in 1950. While representing Cannington, he was a member of the Ontario Rural Hockey Association’s Intermediate ‘A’ champions! After one curling outing in Port Perry, John was able to utilize his negotiation skills and driving abilities, which had been honed during his employment with the Department of Highways, to safely shepherd a trio of young lads back to their respective homes in the Cannington area. In his retirement years, he became the “manager” for the renowned Cannington Brewers lob-ball squad. Due, in part, to his constant reminders to use “Two hands for beginners!” and “Hand over glove”, he was able to transform a rag-tag bunch of Canningtonians into a championship ball club... on occasion. John enjoyed thoroughly his involvement with this team. John loved his hometown of Cannington. He provided thousands of hours of volunteer time to his community with his involvement in the Cannington Lions Club, Cannington Minor Hockey, the Cannington Curling Club, and the Brock Lodge. John was also a life-long member of Trinity United Church in Cannington. In recognition of his dedication to his community, he was presented with the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012. Surrounded by his family, it was extremely proud moment for all of us. His example of volunteerism has inspired his children and grandchildren to also contribute to their communities. John was very fortunate to be surrounded by great neighbours and friends. Your support and friendship throughout the years has been very much appreciated. Special thanks are extended to Jason and Ashley Kirkos and their family for all of their help during a stressful time for our family! We will be eternally grateful for your kindness! We are also thankful for the comfort and care which was provided by the staff at Lakeview Manor during the past few months. A private committal will take place at Cedar Vale Cemetery. If desired, memorial donations may be made to the Cannington Lions Club. Any memories or photos shared online at www.thornefuneralhome.ca would be welcomed by the family. John’s family invites you to drop in to a casual Open House to celebrate his life on: Sunday, July 24th, 2022 Woodville Legion Queen Street, Woodville 2 to 4:30 p.m. Please join us to share some memories and light refreshments.
Sunday
24
July

Celebration of John's life

2:00 pm - 4:30 pm
Sunday, July 24, 2022
Royal Canadian Legion Branch #184
Queen Street
Woodville, Ontario, Canada