Our History

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

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Oliver McKillop

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J. Tolbert Trimble

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Paula McKenzie

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Owen McKenzie

Douglas McKillop began this family funeral business locatedin downtown Portage la Prairie in 1886. For a short time, McKillop partnered with a Mr. Dodimead the furniturecomponent of McKillop’s Furniture and Funeral Service.  Dodimead would later withdraw from thebusiness and McKillop’s sons Oliver and Neil grew into the profession.  Oliver McKillop would die in Hong Kong whileserving in Canada’s Armed Forces. 

Tolbert “Toby” Trimble and Malcolm A. Kains gained ownershipof the McKillop Furniture and Funeral Service in 1961 and the firm was re-namedTrimble Kains.  Kains eventually withdrewfrom the partnership and the operation became known as Trimble Funeral Chapel.

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

A Trimble staff member, Ron Moffit purchased the family firmon December 31, 1974.  Evergreen MemorialGardens was acquired in 1976.  Ownershiptransferred in 1984 to Harry Jackson who sold to Dwayne Hicks in 1985 who namedthe firm Portage Funeral Chapel.  Heincreased the size of the chapel and garage at Evergreen Memorial Gardens.  During this period of changing ownershipsthere came a time in 1997 when Owen and Paula McKenzie acquired the firm.  The name was changed to McKenzies PortageFuneral 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 uprightmonuments, 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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