Cowan, Thomas Arthur

Thomas Arthur Cowan was born on the farm near Hartney Manitoba on June 21, 1932.

He passed away peacefully at the Souris Health Centre on March 12, 2020 at 87 years of age.

Art attended Hartney School, and completed his grade twelve at United College of Winnipeg, Manitoba. He then went on to continue his education there.

Art married Reta Janet Robson on April 11, 1953 at Bethel Church in Deleau, Manitoba.

Art and Reta farmed the original homestead SW 32-6-22 as the third generation of Cowans. He was recognized as the zero till farmer of the year in 1992.

Art’s love of community motivated him to serve as Reeve of the Cameron municipality for 25 years.

During that time of service he was involved in the building and establishment of the Town Hall, Hartney Community Rink, and the Hartney Health Centre (personal care home).

He enjoyed participating on various boards including the Surface Rights Board of Manitoba, Souris and Glenwood Hospital Board, and the Pool Elevator in Hartney.

Art enjoyed sports and had fun playing and coaching different teams. He was part of the Hartney Ball Team, the Grande Clairiere Ball team and the Manitoba Coyotes, slow pitch team. He played senior hockey and coached senior and minor hockey. He loved curling in many bonspiels. He remembers the bonspiels in Dauphin fondly.

In addition to sports, Art loved to travel. He went to Egypt with a provincial government marketing trade mission, representing Prairieland Grain. Art and Reta enjoyed trips to California to visit his sister Kathleen and Gordon Freeman. For their fortieth anniversary, Art and Reta enjoyed exploring Australia together.

The family remembers many fun summers camping at Madge Lake.

Art is survived by his wife Reta Janet and his sister Geraldine Ames.  As well as his five children, his daughter Kay Cowan, son Doug (Cathy) Cowan, daughter Debi (Kelvin) Jenkins, daughter Jani (Dale) McBurney, and son Bill (Nina) Cowan, his eleven grandchildren and twenty two great- grandchildren.

His funeral was held in Hartney at the Hartney Centennial Centre on March 17, 2020.

His private internment will take place at Cowan Farms at a later date.

In memory of Art, donations may be made to the Hartney Community Health Centre c/o Prairie Mountain Health Box 280 Hartney, Manitoba R0M 0X0 or to a charity of your choice.

40 thoughts on “Cowan, Thomas Arthur”

  1. Our deepest condolences to Reta and family. Art will be missed by anyone that had the pleasure of meeting him. He was a true gentleman, farmer, and his children and grand children’s biggest fan!

  2. Reta and family

    So sorry to hear of Art’s passing. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all at this sorrowful time.

  3. We were so sorry to hear of Art’s passing. He was a wonderful man and will be missed by many.
    Trevor and Ruth Mealy and family

  4. Our sincere condolences to all the family. May your memories of Art help to ease your sorrow.
    I will always cherish my memories of riding to ball tournaments in the big red station wagon, and how Art and Reta made Lew and I feel like part of the family.
    A very nice and kindhearted gentleman.

  5. Sorry to hear if the passing of Art.
    Our thoughts and prayers are with Reta and all the families.
    Glen and Gail Williamson

  6. A true gentleman in Southwestern Manitoba. Our prayers are with Reta and the Cowan family.

  7. Reta and family,

    Our deepest condolences on Art’s passing. He will be missed as a strong community supporter,a good neighbour, family friend and statesman!

    Gordon and Rosalie White

  8. Reta and family
    Sorry to see Arts passing. Our Sincere Sympathy to you at this sad time. We have some great memories at the ball fields. Lots of laughs. Always the gentleman. He will be missed by many friends.

  9. Sorry to hear of Art’s passing. Our sincere sympathy to you and your family.

  10. Reta and family
    We wish to extend our sympathy to the family at this time.

  11. Reta and families
    Deepest condolences to your beautiful family. Art was a classy, kind, always sharing a laugh and a big hug. Our Dad had such fond memories, and great stories to tell of the two of them. He will be missed.
    Gail and Bernie Martin.

  12. Reta and family

    So sorry to hear of Art’s passing, my deepest condolences.
    Working with Art on the Surface Rights Board was a real pleasure. He would always start the meetings with a joke. I remember him coming to a meeting with a neck brace on. The question was, what happened, Art’s reply was, “fell on my head”. Then he proceeded to tell us how he fell off the combine.
    I am sure glad I had a phone conversation with him last fall when I was back in MB and in Hartney with daughter Brittney watching my grandson play hockey.
    I will always have a chuckle when I remember Art.

  13. Dear Reta,Bill and Nina and all of the Family,
    Our caring sympathy to all of you as you remember such fine gentleman as Art was- community-minded,fun,welcoming,strong love of family and so many more tributes.He most definitely made the world a better place!
    We feel it’s prudent to stay away from celebrating with you on Tuesday as we just returned from a flight and we are try to self-isolate for awhile.People coughing on the plane and one never knows.Our thoughts will be with you as much love will surround you.

  14. Bert and Marie Peaslee, Reta and all your families
    our deepest sympathy from our house to yours he will certainly be missed by his neighbours and Friends

  15. Our prayers and thoughts are with your family during this difficult time.

  16. Sincere sympathy to Reta,Kay,Doug,Debi, Jani, Bill and all your extended families.
    Lots of fun memories with the Cowan crew through the years. Art was a wonderful man, cherish your memories.
    Frank and Karen Lang

  17. Dear Reta,Bill,Nina,Doug,Cathy,Debi,Kelvin,Jan,Dale Kay and families,
          Our sincere condolences on Art’s passing. He was such an upstanding, outstanding family man who donated much of his time for the benefit of others and his community and still always had time for a visit and a positive conversation. He will be missed by many. Thinking of you all.
        Paul and Ania Hammond
        Heather and Ernie Braun

  18. Our deepest condolences. Art was a wonderful neighbor. Reta and Art were so very kind to Mom11

  19. Dear Reta and family,

    Our most sincere condolences on Arts passing. He will be missed by all that knew him.

    Thinking of you all at this most difficult time.

    Shane and Karen Eastman and family

  20. Dear Reta and family:  we are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of your husband, your father and grandfather.  Art was truly a wonderful friend and a true gentleman.  I will miss our birthday calls on June 21!  We are unable to attend the farewell services because of Delores’s health issues, however, you are all in our prayers and affections.  RIP
    Edward and Delores Genaille

  21. Reta and family,
    Very sorry to hear of Art’s passing. I have many memories of Art and his wise counsel as we discussed the political times in south west Manitoba.
    Art will be missed by all who knew him.
    My condolences to all of Art’s family.
    Dale Smeltz

  22. Reta and Family,

    Our condolences on Art’s passing. I have great memories of staying at the Cowen’s during my childhood! He will be greatly missed. Mom and Dad also send their condolences.

  23. To the Cowan family,
    So sorry to hear of Art’s passing.
    I have many happy memories of spending time at the Cowan’s during my childhood.
    Art was a pillar of the community and I know he will be greatly missed by all his family and friends.
    Condolences to all.
    Cathy Garza(Scharff)

  24. Our condolences for the loss of a wonderful man, a very good athlete, and a person who I respected throughout his live. Reta and Art raised some very well respected children who have done well in their lives. He will be missed.

  25. Art will be truly missed by all. He was a man who was devoted to family, farm, and friends. Art was a community builder through the years through his actions, time and sponsorship. He had a great sense of humor and often saw the glass half full rather than half empty.
    Art was a great family friend , a genuine friend.

    Thinking of you all and sending virtual hugs.

  26. Our sincere sympathy on the passing of Art. He was such a kind gentleman who left everyone who met him better people. May your many memories help you through the difficult days ahead.

  27. Dear Reta and family,
    We were so very saddened to receive the news of Art’s passing. He was a very kind man and a true gentleman, for whom our family always had the greatest respect and admiration. May he rest in peace after a life well-lived. Please accept our heartfelt sympathy.
    Katharine (Cseres) and John Schulz

  28. Reta and your wonderful family,
    So sad to hear of Art’s passing, he was such a gentle, friendly, respected person who always made everyone feel comfortable in his presence.
    He will be missed.
    Del and Joyce

  29. Gets and Family. Deepest sympathies on the passing of Art. He was such a wonderful person and such a community minded person. He will be truly missed.

  30. Reta and all the Cowan Families. Our thoughts and prayers were with you on this most difficult day. Art was a great friend, statesman and pillar in the Community. Always had time for a chat and a valued piece of advice. Family was always his first consideration. God Bless!

  31. We first met Art and Reta in 2016 when their grandson Del was playing hockey in the Allan Cup in Steinbach. Little did we know then that our daughter Kelsey who was dating Del at the time would become Kelsey Cowan three years later. Art had a magical smile that day as he did just last month when we, along with Del, Kelsey and his newest great-granddaughter Wren, had lunch with he and Reta at their home. In the few years we came to know Art as a kind, generous and very welcoming man. Those who knew Art would likely know of he and Reta’s evening tours of the Cowan “fields” as crops matured – cocktails in hand. I vividly recall being with Del and finding five sheets of white paper each with a few leaves and notes indicating the fields from which they were taken – a gift from Art. While Del raised an eyebrow upon seeing this new display I could tell he understood and loved the underlying sentiment – Grandpa was still in the game! Seeding will start soon and we can see Art keeping track of the crops’ progress from his new vantage point. We will miss seeing Art on return visits to the farm. Our deepest sympathies to you all.

  32. Reta and family,
    I was saddened to hear of Art’s passing. He was a kind, gentle and fun person. I have wonderful memories of time spent playing at your house. He made a difference in the community. Art will be missed but will have left great memories. With sincere sympathy . Karen and Warren

  33. To the Cowan’s We are sorry for the loss of Art. Too sad to think we won’t see him at the rink and ball park and in town. Of course he will be there cheering on his grandkids. He will be watching over the farm, and all his family!! He was a wonderful, kind, intelligent man, loved by everyone. He will be missed. Cyril and Kate

  34. We are sending our most sincere and heartfelt condolences to the entire Cowan family at this very sad time. Art was a true gentleman. My mom, Vona Cochrane, sends her love to her dear friend Geraldine Ames.
    May you find comfort and peace in all of the wonderful memories you made together.

  35. Reta and family,
    Please accept our sincere condolences on Art’s passing. He was a wonderful husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather! He certainly placed his family and community in high standing and will be sorely missed by all. Thank goodness that you all have so many wonderful memories to sustain you during this difficult time and sad times to come.

  36. Sincere sympathy to you in the loss of a kind and gentle husband, father, grandfather. We were honoured to have known Art. His legacy will live on through the lessons he taught his family.
    Sincerely, Brian & Kathie Saunderson

  37. Dear Reta and family.
    We were so sorry to hear of Art’s passing. I first met you and Art shortly after you were married and your mom and dad were baby sitting me. We next met at the many municipal conventions we both attended. I always thought you were such a nice couple. Art will be sadly missed. He was a true gentleman.
    Lionel and Sandra (Hoath) McGhie

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