Although our hearts are heavy, we honour and celebrate the life of Robert Otto Krug. He passed from our lives on November 22, 2020 at the Crowsnest Pass Continuing Care Centre, Blairmore, AB. Otto lived 93 full years of life filled with love for his family, community, and friends.
Otto was born on March 29, 1927 at his parents’ farmstead near Kinistino, SK. Otto was the only son of Eva Marie Krug (Née: Otto) and Karl Krug. At an early age, Otto contracted rheumatic fever and was told he would never be able to work a hard day in his life. Undaunted, Otto worked as a lineman for SaskPower until he met the love of his life, Olga Tarasenko. They married on April 30, 1956. Otto, now a proud married man, went looking for more stable work and began working on a drilling rig across various locations within Alberta and Saskatchewan. Otto, his wife Olga and two young daughters, Nettie Ann and Helen settled down in Coleman, AB in 1961 with Otto starting a new career with Imperial Oil/Esso as a service station owner/licensee. The family grew to five kids with Barbara coming next and the twins, June and John last. Otto’s business expanded to include auto repair and tow truck service. Otto and his tow truck were a common fixture in times when the road was closed and vehicles littered the ditches, and when trailers in west Coleman were being blown off their foundations. Over the years, he also sold AMC vehicles and worked for Coca-Cola delivering fountain pop and fixing their vending machines – there was nothing he wouldn’t try. Otto retired from the service station at age 65, but continued to operate Otto’s Towing until he was 70 years old.
Otto was a very active person. From curling as a younger man, to coaching and managing minor hockey teams when his son played the game, and long after his son went off to university, he was always involved in a variety of activities. For his contributions to minor hockey, Otto was awarded the Ken Farn Memorial Award. As a mechanic, Otto lent a hand whenever possible to stock car races, smash up derbies, and he even sponsored a local formula car racer. After retiring from the Esso service station, Otto worked for a local skidoo shop and became addicted to the sport, aiding in the improvement of local trails. In 2003, Otto was awarded a lifetime membership to the CrowSnow Riders in recognition of his dedication and hard work.
Otto was a man of service with a strong belief in community involvement and support. As a member of the Elks for over 50 years, he held the position of Exalted Ruler multiple times as he spearheaded many initiatives to improve the lives of others. In 2011, Otto was presented with the Order of Crowsnest Pass for his many years of volunteering.
Throughout all of this, Otto always made time for family and to cheer for the Toronto Maple Leafs! During their retirement, Otto and Olga developed a passion for fishing and they could be seen most of the summer in their small motorboat locally. Otto also began gardening again and loved to grow tomatoes; a hobby that he continued when he moved into the York Creek Lodge.
Everyone he saw said, “Hi, Otto!”. He was recognized in the strangest places without even a hint of how they might know him. He made an impression everywhere he went and you only had to meet him once to remember him forever. Otto inspired so many throughout his life and he will live on in cherished memories.
Otto is survived by his children, Nettie Ann (Ken) Walter of Lethbridge, AB, Helen (Ron Knight) MacIvor of Havelock, ON, Barbara (Al Gareau) Punter of Morengo, SK, June (Jay) Wickens of Crowsnest Pass, AB, and John (Suzette) Krug of Strathmore, AB; his grandchildren, David, Crystal (James), Neil (Andrea), Kim, Katrina (Michael), Jordaan (Chad), Jennica, Brianna, Jeannie, Kyle and Allyse; his great grandchildren, Jason, Aaron, Julia, Laura and Tahlia; as well as his extended family and many friends.
Otto was predeceased by his beloved wife of sixty-two years, Olga Cathaleen Krug on April 25, 2018 and by his parents, Karl and Marie Krug.
With respect for Otto’s wishes, no funeral service will be held. Memorial donations will be gratefully accepted by the York Creek Lodge Residents’ Association (PO Box 1050, Blairmore, AB T0K 0E0), or by the CrowSnow Riders (PO Box 732, Blairmore, AB T0K 0E0). Condolences may be registered at www.fantinsfuneralchapel.ca. .
Fantin’s Funeral Chapel entrusted with the arrangements. (403) 562-8555
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