Regimental Number: M45560
In 1921, Anton and Emma Dorscheid and family that consisted of four sons, Arthur (1904), Jack (1909), Charles (1912), and Earl (November 17, 1919) moved from Windom, Minnesota, USA to an area west of Bezanson known as Glen Leslie to join their daughter, Sylvira (1899) and her husband Herman Kimble. The Dorscheid’s purchased land from Dr. John Peschong and lived in a log house with a sod roof for many years. The children went to the Crystal Creek School and were very active in sports. Through hard work and perseverance, Anton and his sons built up a sizable farm and cattle operation. Anton and Emma passed away in 1939 following which their sons managed the farm.
Earl enlisted in the Army on June 24, 1940 at Grande Prairie and was sent to Edmonton for basic training followed by Nanaimo, back to Edmonton, Calgary, Camrose, Dundurn and Vernon before being transferred back to Calgary. In December 1940, Earl received permission to marry Velna Parrish. Earl successfully completed a course to become a Class III Driver. He suffered from an acute appendicitis attack and was in serious condition when it was discovered that his brother, Charles, had the same or similar blood type. Charles was at a training camp in eastern Canada at that time and quickly traveled to Camrose to provide the life-saving blood transfusion. After such a serious illness, Earl was declassified but remained in Camrose. He was discharged on demobilization on September 20, 1945 in Calgary. At one point Earl was promoted to Lance Corporal however subsequently relinquished the appointment. Private Earl Lee Dorscheid (Regimental # M45560) served in Canada and received the War Medal 1939-45 and the Canadian Volunteer Service Medal. Unfortunately, Earl’s brother, Charles, was killed in action on August 19, 1944 in France.
Velna and Earl had four children; Darrel, Danny, Joanne and Mark. Sadly Mark passed away when he was 5 months old. Once back in Glen Leslie, Earl bought his father’s ¼ of land and an additional 80 acre parcel. Jack bought more land as well and the two brothers entered into a partnership with the farming operation. In an effort to supplement the farm income, Earl found employment with Moon’s Mill. Shortly thereafter, Earl and Jack decided to enter into the sawmill business during the winter months and established their mill-site slightly north of Moon’s Mill that was located north of Clarkson Valley. They sub-contracted timber from Moon’s Mill and hired many local farmers. Their brother, Art Dorscheid, was the flunky and his wife, Rosie, was the cook. Eventually Earl and Jack retired and their sons took over management of the farm that included the original Dorscheid land.
Earl passed away on May 31, 1970 and Velna in 2008 – both were buried at the Glen Leslie Cemetery.
Contributed by Wanda Zenner
Source: Smoky River to Grande Prairie p. 425-426 (Dorscheid stories), p. 53 (Parrish family story)
SPRA Family and Personal Life Reference Files – Obituary (Velna)
Herald Tribune Oct. 7, 1955 (biography)
Interview with Danny Dorscheid (son)
Herald Tribune newspaper articles