Bligh, Lyle Kenneth
1927 — 2016
Lyle Kenneth Bligh was born in Gerald, Sask., on May 20, 1927. He was the third of four children of Clarence and Stephania Bligh who farmed in the Gerald area. Lyle grew up in the era of horses and steel-wheel tractors and developed a love for farming that would bring him back to his roots later in life.
An adventurer at heart, first he was off to Winnipeg as a new recruit in the Winnipeg police force. During this time, the wedding of his sister Maline introduced him to the love of his life, Gertrude Law (Gertie). Quickly inseparable, they were married on Oct. 6, 1950.
However, Lyle decided that law enforcement was not his calling and soon moved back to Saskatchewan. There, Gertie and Lyle had five children between the years of 1954 and 1962: Sharon, Russell, Roderick, Gordon and Linda. During this time, the family resided in the Hazel Cliffe and Spy Hill area. In the early 1960s, Lyle would be presented the opportunity of training to be a meteorology technician.
In 1962, Lyle, having completed his training, took his family on a grand adventure to Norman Wells, N.W.T. There, Lyle shared his love for the outdoors with all his family — hiking, hunting and fishing. Lyle also became an accomplished photographer during his time in the North. He developed black-and-white photos in his darkroom and took spectacular photos of the Norman Wells landscape; a highlight included one of the midnight sun.
At last, in 1968, Lyle and family returned to his first love, farming. He bought the Leo Bessel farm in the Langenburg area and worked hard to provide for his family. In Langenburg, Lyle joined the local barbershop quartet to entertain many with his singing. He also encouraged his family to develop interests in music.
Another change in the early 1990s, and circumstance took Lyle and Gertrude from the farm. In the ensuing years they lived in numerous communities in Saskatchewan including Fleming, Neudorf and Cabri. They settled in Craik in 1994. There, in their later years, with Gertie’s love of cooking and Lyle’s entrepreneurial spirit, they created a business to sell baked goods at the Moose Jaw farmer’s market.
Lyle was also a lover of books and had a huge library to satisfy that love. In addition he had a keen interest in his family history and helped create the Bligh family tree dating back to the 1700s. He facilitated this with a membership in the Craik Genealogy Society. Lyle and Gertie’s unwavering Christian faith guided them and their family through the illness of a son and the death of a daughter (Sharon) and grandchild (Kaitlin).
Lyle fell ill in 2012, residing in Moose Jaw for a few months before being placed closer to home in the Craik Health Centre. But while his health declined, his spirit never did and Lyle maintained an everlasting love for Gertie, his family, and baked goods. He passed away at the Craik Health Centre on Feb. 2, 2016 at the age of 88 years. A wonderful life well-lived.