Our History

History of McKillop's Funeral Service, Trimble Funeral Chapel, Portage Funeral Chapel and McKenzies Portage Funeral Chapel

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Orville McKillop

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J. Tolbert Trimble

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Paula McKenzie

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Owen McKenzie

Douglald McKillop began this family funeral business located in downtown Portage la Prairie in 1886. For a short time, McKillop partnered with a Mr. Dodimead the furniture component of McKillop’s Furniture and Funeral Service.  Dodimead would later withdraw from the business and McKillop’s sons Orville and Neil grew into the profession.  Orville McKillop would die in Hong Kong while serving in Canada’s Armed Forces. 

Tolbert “Toby” Trimble and Malcolm A. Kains gained ownership of the McKillop Furniture and Funeral Service in 1961 and the firm was re-named Trimble Kains.  Kains eventually withdrew from the partnership and the operation became known as Trimble Funeral Chapel.

Trimble was heavily involved in the Portage la Prairie community and also operated a dairy farm. He dropped the furniture component of the business in 1966 and re-located the funeral home to its present location at 56 Royal Road South.  He built a new facility, which was fully equipped and modern with such features as family and reposing rooms. 

A Trimble staff member, Ron Moffit purchased the family firm on December 31, 1974.  Evergreen Memorial Gardens was acquired in 1976.  Ownership transferred in 1984 to Harry Jackson who sold to Dwayne Hicks in 1985 who named the firm Portage Funeral Chapel.  He increased the size of the chapel and garage at Evergreen Memorial Gardens.  During this period of changing ownerships there came a time in 1997 when Owen and Paula McKenzie acquired the firm.  The name was changed to McKenzies Portage Funeral Chapel and would be known the community as McKenzies.

To keep abreast of the changing expectations of the public, McKenzies have increased choices at Evergreen Memorial Gardens with upright monuments, columbariums, scattering garden and crematorium.  

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Karen Letts, Paula McKenzie, Owen McKenzie, Jeff Dubois, Amy Chappellaz

In 2015 Jeff Dubois, a long time staff member, purchased thefuneral home.  Jeff had been the managingdirector for the previous 3 years and brings a wealth of knowledge as well asthe personality the community has come to expect from McKenzies.  Karen Letts joined the firm in September2015.  Karen brings over 16 years’ experience.  Amy Chappellaz, who was born and raised inPortage will graduate from the Canadian College of Funeral Service in May 2016.McKenzies has always valued their part time support staff of Vi Siemens, Len Essay, Helen Roy, Gerry & Barb Gillespie,  Cheryl Nckels, Walter Ewert, Jared Bergen, Nick Plourde, Ed & Dianne Dzikowski.

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