The Story of Harry Casey, written by Ferg Devins

Har­ry Casey
was one of the best C.P.R. Sta­tion Agen­t’s I worked for and with. When I start­ed learn­ing teleg­ra­phy under Steve Bal­anyk in Souris sta­tion, on Sep­tem­ber 7th, 1947, Har­ry told me a sto­ry that I nev­er for­got. Har­ry’s expe­ri­ence affect­ed my life.

When Har­ry was a young relief agent in the ear­ly 1900’s he was reliev­ing at a small sta­tion. In those days they worked 10 or 12 hour shifts and only had Sun­days for a day off.  Any­way, on Sat­ur­day Har­ry was off duty at 18:00 O’clock (6:00 p.m.). It was 18:05 , he was still in the office, busy clos­ing down.The wick­et was closed. He had already put the cash and valu­ables in the safe and locked it. Some­one knocked on the office door. Har­ry opened the door. In the wait­ing room was a farmer, who explained that he want­ed to pick up an express ship­ment of imple­ment repairs.

Har­ry being young and a bit cocky, with a good job, and think­ing that mon­ey could get you any­where in the world, and look­ing for­ward to hav­ing the rest of the week­end off with his girl friend, told the farmer the office was closed and he could come back Mon­day and get his repairs. So the farmer went to town, picked up some gro­ceries, went to the hotel and had a few beers, and then went home very dis­ap­point­ed because he would have to miss half a days work on Mon­day to come back and get his repairs from the C.P.R. station.

The next day young Har­ry and his girl friend, (who lat­er became his wife) were out for a Sun­day dri­ve in Har­ry’s new car. Har­ry had the world by the tail. Young, in love, good job, mak­ing a good liv­ing, new car, nice girl friend. He had it made. Roads in those days were only a cou­ple of ruts down a road allowance.

Har­ry came to a large mud pud­dle across the road. There was no turn­ing back. Through the mud pud­dle he went. But he got the car stuck. ‘Lo and behold, who should come along with a team of hors­es, was the same farmer Har­ry had turned away last night. The farmer walked through the mud hooked onto Har­ry’s car and pulled them out. Har­ry, still cocky, and think­ing mon­ey got you every­where, flashed a $10.00 bill and said to the farmer, “Will this be enough for your ser­vices?”, “No Son­ny”, said the farmer, I don’t want your mon­ey, but some­day I may want you to do me a favour”.

Har­ry said to me, ” Fer­gie, I could feel myself shrink­ing to about 6 inch­es in height “.  I nev­er for­got Har­ry Casey and his good advice. One relief Agent told my wife that I had all the peo­ple in town spoiled. That they would come for parcels any­time of the day and even on week­ends. If I was there it did­n’t hurt me to get off my butt. If I was away for the week­end, then it was too bad.

I still have a lot of friends.….….