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ALBERT EDWARD (BERT) BLAKE June 29, 1919 - June 19, 2012 EILEEN GRACE BLAKE (nee MURRAY) May 6, 1928 - July 3, 2012 They were a formidable pair. Both were horse people par excellence, he a successful trainer for over 50 years at Assiniboia Downs and she a skilled equestrian in her youth - winner of the Powder Puff Derby at Assiniboia Downs in 1960 - and later a buyer of horses for the track. They were partners in profession, and in love. Married for 55 years, so close to one another in life, it seems somehow fitting that they died a mere two weeks apart from one another. They were a beloved pair. Bert stormed Juno Beach on D-Day, and was personally decorated by King George Vl. He could appear gruff but on the inside was a softy. Eileen was poised and elegant, with impeccable posture---a leftover, no doubt, from her equestrian days. They each lived full, rich lives, and they did what they loved. Eileen and Bert will be missed dearly by their family and friends. Predeceased by their parents Albert Edward and Florence Blake and Roy and Lois Murray. Also predeceased by Eileen's brother Jack in 1947, and brother-in-law Brant Ackroyd in 1971. Celebrating their life are Eileen's sister Margaret Ackroyd of Brandon, MB, brother Roy (Lorri) Murray of Vernon, B.C., nieces and nephews Ellen (John) Kachan of Calgary, AB, Jack (Mo) Ackroyd of Vernon, B.C., Greg (Sheri) Ackroyd of St. Albert, AB, Susan Slawson of Burlington, ON, Brian (Jackie) Ackroyd of Winnipeg, MB, Michele Murray (Daniel Miller) of Sherbrooke, QC, Roslyn Murray of Vancouver, B.C. Also several great and great-great-nieces and nephews. The family extend a heartfelt thank you to the staff at Victoria General Hospital, Winnipeg, for their kind and compassionate care of Bert and Eileen. Also special thanks to Barry Boychuk and Mary Dagg for their help and kindness to Bert and Eileen. Flowers graciously declined. As per Bert and Eileen's request, a private family graveside service will be held in Brandon. Arrangements are in care of Brockie Donovan Funeral Cremation Services, Brandon, (204) 727 0694. Messages of condolence may be placed at www.brockiedonovan.com.
As published in the Winnipeg Free Press on July 14, 2012
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