Dr. Ernie Baergen
Dr. Ernie Baergen passed away peacefully on Sunday, April 22, 2012, at St. Paul's Hospital in Saskatoon. He was 79.
Ernie was born in Sedalia, Alberta, attending school in Irma and Vauxhall, AB., then took his high school in Rosthern Junior College.
He was part of the first graduating class in Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan, a distinction he considered an honour. Ernie practiced medicine as a family doctor from 1958 to 1966. Then he became the very first Executive Director of the newly formed Saskatchewan Medical Association. Ernie stayed in this role until his retirement in 1992.
Dr. Ernie Baergen had wide ranging skills and interests which he applied to numerous fields of administration. Ed Schmidt, well-known in the MHSS circle of contacts, developed an intimate relationship with Ernie over the decades. Ed notes, that Ernie was always unpretentious, and was drawn into researching old church records that were two to four hundred years old.
His linguistic skills evolved to master much of the north shore of Europe's Gothic scripts. The medical contents, and then the family relationship indexing of these old records: Tragheimerweide, Montau - Gruppe on the Vistula River, and alongside the Danzig Church records, which no one before had ever succeeded in reading or indexing by individual and family, as well as health conditions, were completed in digital format under Ernie's care.
Several side results were the knowledge of geographic locations as well as something that would be close to a medical encyclopaedia over those centuries. To protect the research, the many thousands of pages of work were copy-righted and originals placed in the Mennonite Historical Society of Saskatchewan Archives. He had many research experts that became willing to assist him in his totally unique compilations.
Ernie and his wife Irene liked to spend quality time curling and golfing together. They also spent enjoyable times at their cabin with their children and grandchildren at Emma Lake. When they could no longer particpate actively in sports, they continued as active sports fans. Ernie also loved music and sang in a number of choirs.
When retirement came, he was often on his computer, researching, writing books, and working on family history. Ernie's family appreciates this rich legacy he left them.
Ernie is survived by his loving wife of 57 years, Irene, and his five daughters: Brenda (Howard); Donna (Gerry); Sheryl (Larry); Heather; and Glenna (Laurie) and many beloved grandchildren and great- grandchildren. He is also survived by his brothers: Robert (Betty); William (Donna); and his sister Lily (Carl).
A Memorial Service: Friday, April 27th at 2:00 p.m. at Nutana Park Mennonite Church (1701 Ruth St. E.). In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to MCC Saskatchewan 600-45th St. W. Saskatoon, SK S7L 5W9 or to Rosthern Junior College Box 5020, 410 6th Ave., Rosthern, SK S0K 3R0 or to the Saskatoon Food Bank 202 Ave. C. S. Saskatoon S7M 1N2.