Memorable Manitobans: David Solomon “Dave” Weiss (1913-2005)
Businessman, municipal official.
Born at Yorkton, Saskatchewan on 17 November 1913 to Dora Berger (1891-1978) and Jacob Weiss (1881-1930), he was only ten when his father left the family of four children, resulting in the young boy as eldest having to find odd jobs in Saskatchewan and North Dakota to support the household. One of those jobs was collecting and selling scrap metal.
At the outbreak of the Second World War, he enlisted in the Canadian military and was sent with a medical unit to serve in northern Europe, where he won a medal for bravery for a daring rescue at the front. While in London, England, he met Celia “Cissie” Cohen (1918-1980). After the war, he invited her to come to Canada and marry him, which she did. They subsequently had two daughters and two sons.
Living in Brandon after the war with no financial resources and little education, he turned to his experiences as a young labourer and in 1945 purchased a scrapyard near First Street and Pacific Avenue. Over time, he developed Brandon Scrap Iron and Metals Recycling into a successful business, including a branch at Yorkton, Saskatchewan. He served on the Brandon City Council for many years and was actively involved in city planning for much of his life. Known to be a gruff and controversial figure, he was nonetheless recognized as a proud and tireless supporter of the city. Although he was Jewish, he was keenly interested in all religions and attended church regularly, visiting every church in Brandon during his life there.
Around the age of 86, he closed his business and moved to Winnipeg to live with one of his daughters. He died there on 11 March 2005 and was buried in the Shaarey Zedek Cemetery.
Death registration [Celia Weiss], British Columbia Vital Statistics.
Obituary [Celia Weiss], Brandon Sun, 28 November 1980, page 82.
“Local merchant was all heart,” Brandon Sun, 12 March 2005.
“David S. Weiss,” Harrison Family Tree, Ancestry.
Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.
This page was prepared by Lois Braun and Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 29 October 2022