ULRICH, Jürg (George)

September 1, 1935 – May 9, 2023

Jürg (George) Ulrich was born on September 1, 1935 in Zürich, Switzerland. He was the fourth of five children born to Lina Frei and Hans Ulrich. George dedicated his life to serving the Lord and providing for his family through farming and breeding and raising cattle.

When George was about 6 years old there was a freak accident that almost took his life. George spent weeks in the University Hospital in Zurich under the care of the most famous Swiss neurologist at that time, Dr. Hugo Krayenbühl. With the help of the relatively new discovery of penicillin and the grace of God, George lived. Ongoing infections and complications made for a very long journey but in the end, Dr. Krayenbühl acknowledged that his recovery had truly been a miracle.

In 1955-57 George attended the Wetzikon Agricultural School in Switzerland. He was the top student in classes about cattle breeding practices. This passion stayed with him throughout his entire life.

George married Trudy on April 9, 1960 and lived on a small farm with his parents that included 25 milking cows and some fruit trees. During this time he started his breeding of Braunvieh animals along with his father.  In 1964 one of his cows was declared the nicest cow of any breed in all of Switzerland at the National Exhibition in Lausanne.  

George’s brother Hans moved to Canada earlier and needed help on his farm, so in 1969, George decided to sell everything in Switzerland and move across the pond with his wife and 3 small sons. They arrived in Claresholm, Alberta on April 1, 1969.

George quickly started breeding Hereford cattle in Canada like his brother Hans; however, his passion was with his favorite – Braunvieh. In 1969 the first Braunvieh bull, named Aron, was imported into Canada which enabled George to start his dream. George could be a bystander during conversations except when he talked about his cattle; he could not be stopped and could “talk cows” for hours at a time. Over the years, the genetics from his cattle were sold into the USA, Canada, Switzerland, Australia, South Africa, Namibia, Brazil, Mexico, Costa Rica and Spain. In fact, some of his best of the breed won national championships in both Mexico and Brazil.

George was a founding member of the Braunvieh Associations in Canada and the USA and spent time traveling and speaking about the Braunvieh breed. He built a friendship group and business partners around the world to allow a never-ending opportunity to discuss the benefits of the Braunvieh breed with anyone who showed interest.

In 1975, the Ulrich family along with five other families formally started the Faith Community Baptist Church in Claresholm and after 48 years it is still thriving.

In 1993, George sold all his cattle to Mexico and settled in Cochrane, Alberta where his oldest son lived. He purchased a house and he and Trudy became active members of the Baptist Church, which was just around the corner from their home.

In 2020, after Trudy passed away, George went to live back in Claresholm where he resided for the past two and a half years.

George passed away peacefully at the age of 87 years on May 9, 2023. He is survived by his son Martin Ulrich (Wendy), grandchildren Joel Ulrich (Jessica), great grandchildren, Madison, Ava, Presley and Hudson, and Hannah Wollin (Robert) great grandchild August, son Bernhard Ulrich (Val), grandchildren Stephanie Martin (Scott) great grandchildren, Faith, Carissa and Elarah, Andrew Ulrich, Miranda Cooper (Nic) great grandchildren Ellie, Leopold and Levi, and son Stefan Ulrich (Carma), grandchildren Carlina Ulrich and Amy Ulrich. George is survived by one sister, Regula Witschi (Christian) and many other family and friends in both Switzerland and Canada.

George will be dearly missed.

A Celebration of Life service will be held at the Bow Valley Baptist Church in Cochrane, AB on Wednesday, May 17, 2023, at 1:30 pm. Refreshments to follow. All are welcome.

Please see here the Live Stream of the Celebration of Life service for George Ulrich, scheduled to start at 1:15 pm.

Arrangements entrusted to Flo Simpson, Funeral Director

Cochrane Country Funeral Home – cochrane@piersons.ca 403-932-1039

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