Joseph Young is well-known in Saskatoon and throughout Saskatchewan for being a pioneer in the fast food industry. He partnered with Col. Harland Sanders in the very beginning years of Kentucky Fried Chicken and spread the franchise throughout North America.
Joseph Young was born in St. Catherine’s, Ontario and raised in Sudbury by Janie Bartlett of the Children’s Aid Society. His journey has been an inspiration to many. He was a most determined and courageous man whose life was full of hardship and adventures, accomplishment and success. From life as an underground nickel miner and bellhop during Prohibition to respected businessperson, he demanded the best of those around him and was generous in his appreciation and charity.
“Coming through the school of hard knocks had taught me many things, not least of which was the ultimate power of positive thinking. I felt certain that with my determination plus a little luck, I could make my dream realityâ€¦. The harder I worked, the luckier I got.” That later became the title of his autobiography.
Joe was a proud veteran who served in the RCAF as a photographer based in London, England during World War II. After graduating from Ryerson Polytechnic Institute under the veterans education program, he transferred to Saskatoon to manage the Hollywood Studio downtown. He met his wife, Madeleine Duchsherer, at St. Joseph’s Church and they married in Mistatim, Saskatchewan on July 21, 1952. They raised five children. All remain in Saskatoon except Ken who died in 2000, a loss Joe suffered deeply. He lived his life with infectious enthusiasm and shared his drive and passion with those around him. His hobbies, networks and interests were extensive and with Madeleine he enjoyed many winters in Arizona, and summers at Jackfish and Waskesiu with family and friends of all ages.
This fund was created as a legacy to Joe. He came from very humble beginnings and knew what it was like to live with nothing but the generosity of others and a hard day’s work. He never chased fame or fortune; all he wanted was the family and community that he never had growing up. He greatly appreciated everything that he had here in Saskatchewan, and would have wanted to share that with those less fortunate.
Over time, the family would like to grow the fund to become donor-advised â€“ this way the family can be more involved. As his daughter Debbie says, “Dad would have liked that.'”