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LORRAINE MARY MARGARET WEST Obituary pic LORRAINE MARY MARGARET WEST Obituary pic

LORRAINE MARY MARGARET WEST

Date of Passing: Aug 05, 2017

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LORRAINE MARY MARGARET WEST (nee BOUX) Lorraine Mary Margaret West (nee Boux) passed away peacefully in the early morning hours of August 5, 2017, having recently celebrated the forty fourth anniversary of her 39th birthday. Lorraine is survived by her loving husband George; children Martine (Gerry), George, and Joseph (Sonja); and beloved grandsons Paul and Jason. Also left to cherish her memory are brothers Raymond (Audrey) and Richard (Yvette); and her many cousins, nieces and nephews. Mum was predeceased by her parents Joseph and Corana Boux; and sister Juliette Stannard of San Jose, California. Mum was born in St. Boniface Hospital in Winnipeg and was part of a very large extended family of numerous Belgian and French Canadian cousins, beautiful aunts and accomplished uncles. Mum showed an early aptitude for singing and was encouraged by her mother who enjoyed hearing her sing around the house but felt a larger audience would equally enjoy her gift. A lifelong fan of Jeanette MacDonald and Nelson Eddy movies ... Mum set her template to their example of what must have seemed like impossible glamour, melancholy love songs and deep appreciation of beautiful singing. In her late teens, her mother encouraged her to try her luck with a weekly radio broadcast talent contest beamed out of the Beacon Theatre on Main Street. According to family legend, she won the contest six weeks in a row. Through these appearances, she came to be hired as the alto vocalist with the Ed Emel orchestra who gigged most weekends at the Fort Garry Hotel in the ballroom. Mum really wasn't a natural alto but all the orchestra arrangements required an alto so an alto she became in short order. With no specialized vocal training, her talent, intuition (and range) ensured her popularity and job opportunities. Mum soon was approached by the CBC and kicked off her long association there with a 15 minute radio spot called "Let's Meet Lorraine". In addition to radio work and live appearances, Mum was soon appearing on television, both live and pre-recorded, mainly in Winnipeg, but occasionally in Toronto and other major Canadian cities. She was fortunate to have had the legendary guitarist Lenny Breau participate in some of her appearances with the CBC and many fabulous musicians and vocalists throughout her career including childhood friend, Len Cariou, on a particularly memorable one time CTV variety program in the early 1970s called Love in a Cold Climate. Another extraordinary opportunity came one week before Christmas, 1968, when she agreed to sub for a last minute no show singer contracted to accompany an entertainment troupe flying up to Alert on Ellesmere Island (Nunavut), the northern most inhabited community in the world, to provide some cheer to both Canadian and American troops stationed there. We thought it was rather spectacular that she was patched through to our phone from the jet flying her there. They got her home in time for Christmas with time to spare and a suitcase of awesome stories. Mum performed for Prime Ministers and Premiers, for military, for northern Manitoban communities, for regulars at the Constellation Room and many many dinner theatre shows at the Hollow Mug at the (then called) International Inn. She loved performing and all that goes with it. In her later years, she appeared in a duo called "Sugar and Spice" with friend Marie Enns entertaining folk in nursing homes across the city. We always assumed that mum was the "Spice" half of the duo. Mum and dad enjoyed 61 years of married life together. An often busy life juggling rehearsals, shows, travels to appearances and family vacations while raising three children who all had extracurricular activities and hobbies. Mum was proud to be a hockey mum for her sons and supported and cheered all her kids in their interests and talents. Mum was also an accomplished athlete in her own right, playing hockey in her youth and teaching figure skating locally for a time in the 1970s. Mum cherished and enjoyed her wide circle of friends, whether they were childhood chums or members of "The Dirty Dozen" or friends and colleagues she knew throughout her performing years. If you trespassed against anyone she loved, you trespassed against her as far as she was concerned and she was not afraid to state her opinion no matter the station of the unfortunate sinning individual. She faced a number of medical challenges throughout her life, facing every one with calm and grace and courage. Mum had a wonderful sense of humour; something she shared with Dad ... at times we'd swear George Burns and Gracie Allen had materialized right in front of us. Her immediate and extended family were crucial and special to her. She had the enormous pleasure to perform a lovely song for her grandparents on the occasion of their 70th wedding anniversary in front of 500 close family members; the first such married couple in the south eastern region of Manitoba to celebrate this rare event. The many Christmases she hosted for family and many reunions held during times of sorrow and good cheer were very important to her. A lifetime with a sprinkling of adversity, a lot of humour and song, a bit of red wine and loaded potato skins, a lot of fabulous gowns and costumes (the shoes!!), good friends and lots of love and generosity and applause. To quote the immortal George Gershwin ... who could ask for anything more? Mum ... you were so lovely and you shone so brightly, the stars in heaven will surely be jealous. Funeral service will be held on Thursday, August 10, 2017, at 10:00 a.m. at Thomson "In the Park" Funeral Home, 1291 McGillivray Boulevard. The family wishes to express their gratitude to the staff at the Prime Program at Deer Lodge Hospital and the staff at Oakview Place for their loving, respectful and dignified care of Lorraine. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the charity of your choice. THOMSON "IN THE PARK" 204-925-1120 Condolences may be sent to www.thomsoninthepark.com

As published in the Winnipeg Free Press on Aug 09, 2017

Condolences & Memories (9 entries)

  • I never met her, but my dad (Noel) told me about her. Rest in Peace Lorraine. Sing with the angels. - Posted by: Richard Noel Boux (Distant relative ) on: Aug 11, 2017

  • My sympathies to all the family. Lorraine was my second cousin, I met her when I was a small child growing up in Winnipeg. Her father Joseph was my first cousin and very close to my father. Have always been impressed by the little I know of her amazing journey. As a musician I am very proud to be of the same family as she. Merci Martine for the words above & deeply sorry for your loss. Guillaume Boux, Chambly, Québec - Posted by: Guillaume Boux (Second cousin) on: Aug 10, 2017

  • Sending my sincere and heartfelt condolences to Mr. West & the entire family. I played my minor hockey with Joey and I have many fond memories of Mrs. West welcoming friends into the home on Harvest Lane. Very Very Sorry For Your Loss. Murray Brace - Posted by: Murray Brace (Family Friend) on: Aug 09, 2017

  • Martine, My heart goes out to you and your family at this time. Gosh, it brings back so many memories! The stories you told about her and her adventures. I remember meeting her and thinking how beautiful she was. I hope the many great memories help to carry you through this most difficult time. - Posted by: Dawn Bering (Friend of Martine) on: Aug 09, 2017

  • So sorry to hear this news. My sincere sympathy to George and all the family. - Posted by: Celoris Miller (I played many Hollow Mug rehearsals.) on: Aug 09, 2017

  • A lovely tribute to your Mom Martine. I know how proud you were of her and my sincere sympathy to you, Gerry and your son Paul - Posted by: Margie Harris (Friend of Martine) on: Aug 09, 2017

  • With sincere condolences on the loss of the wonderful, amazing, talented, hilarious and just plain FUN - Lorraine. Am sure she and Jerry are 'dueting' up there...accompanied by Neil. With loads of love to George and to the entire family. Lorraine holds a special place in my and Kenny's hearts. Debbie xoxo - Posted by: Debbie Maslowsky (Friend) on: Aug 09, 2017

  • I met Lorraine in 1979 after her Daughter Martine and I became the best of friends. I was so taken with Lorraine; I thought she was incredibly beautiful, gracious and caring; and she always looked fabulous! And she could sing! She had an incredibly beautiful voice! She did have a great sense of humor and could make me laugh any time I was in her presence. Our world has lost an incredibly special lady! My heart (and condolences) go out to George, Martine, Joe, George and families. Let the memories and the love you have for Lorraine carry you through this very sad time. Xo. - Posted by: Kathy Magnusson (Family Friend) on: Aug 09, 2017

  • Ray, I'm sorry for the loss of your sister. She was a great entertainer. - Posted by: Fran Watson (Friend) on: Aug 09, 2017

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Thomson In the Park Funeral Home and Cemetery

Thomson In the Park Funeral Home and Cemetery

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