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Born: Jun 19, 1937

Date of Passing: Jan 10, 2023

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It is with great sadness and much love that we mourn the sudden and unexpected passing of Larry William Elder on January 10, 2023 at the age of 85.
He will be deeply missed by the love of his life and wife of 57 years, Sylvia, daughters, Julie (Dave), Sheri (Helmut) and Tara (Ian), grandchildren, Stephanie (Dao), Luke (Brittany), Nicholas, Brady and Jenna, and great-grandchildren, Mathaeus, Layla and Brooks. Also left to mourn are his sisters, Joyce and Ruth, sisters-in-law, Kathleen and Loreen, and many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his parents, Harold and Florence Elder, sister Dorothy and brother Bruce.
Dad was born on June 19, 1937 in Coronach, Saskatchewan, the fourth child of William Harold and Nellie Florence (Sorsdahl) Elder. He and his siblings, Dorothy, Joyce, Bruce and Ruth were raised on the family farm. They attended Luella and Berg country schools and then went to Coronach School for high school. Dad liked to reminisce of how he and his siblings would go to school on horseback and then by sleigh in the winter when they were young. He also told many stories about playing baseball with Bruce. He loved baseball and sports and passed that love on to his children and grandchildren.
After high school he worked at the Co-Op in Coronach, then near Moose Jaw before joining the Canadian Air Force in 1961. He served in the Air Force until 1965 and acquired electrical training.
He met Sylvia in 1963 and they were married in 1965. They initially lived in Ottawa but moved to Winnipeg in 1967 to be closer to their family in Saskatchewan and start their own family. They welcomed their first child, Julie, in 1968 and settled into a home in the Wolseley area in 1969 where they raised their family and lived together until his passing. They had two more daughters in the 1970s, Sheri and Tara.
Dad worked at Bristol Aerospace as an Electrical Technician for 34 years. He worked on the Black Brandt rocket projects which took him all over the world including Churchill, MB, Wallops Island, Virginia, New Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii, Brazil and Norway. He was most proud of the work they did at Bristol in collaboration with NASA that resulted in a payload he worked on going on a space shuttle flight. We would tell our friends that our dad built rockets for a living to which we received disbelief. But we knew the truth – he was our rocket man. He retired in 2002.
Dad was very involved with the church and community. He was always very active and happy to lend a helping hand to family and friends. He volunteered countless hours on various church committees over the years and when we were young, dedicated time to the community club and coaching softball and ringette. He was a big sports fan and was a Jets season ticket holder for the original Jets. He was from Saskatchewan but became a Blue Bomber fan as soon as they moved to Winnipeg. He played ball and curled for many years. He enjoyed watching all sports on TV but favourites were hockey, football, baseball, curling and horse racing.
Dad was a very dedicated grandpa and attended every school event from winter concerts to Grandparents Day and enjoyed watching his grandchildren play sports and participate in their other activities. Dad and Mom kept themselves busy going from soccer to hockey to softball and baseball games, all school sports, not to mention dance recitals and music concerts. Grandpa was always willing to offer some advice, or tell a story from when he played, especially when it came to baseball and softball.
During retirement Dad and Mom were able to travel to BC, the Maritimes, Hawaii and Florida. Dad found enjoyment in his daily walks with Mom, playing bridge, gardening and still had a small garden in the back yard last summer. He was very handy and would build whatever was needed for the house. He was our very own MacGyver. He was also a very good dancer and loved to dance.

Dad, we will miss you very much but are comforted
in knowing you are shooting off your rockets in heaven.

Cremation has taken place. A memorial service will be held in the spring.
We would like to thank the Emergency Department staff at St. Boniface Hospital for their compassion and kindness.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his name to the Heart & Stroke Foundation.

Condolences may be sent to

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Jan 14, 2023

Condolences & Memories (3 entries)

  • I am so sorry to hear of Larry Elder’s passing. Please accept my heartfelt condolences to your family. I had the great pleasure of working with Larry for many years; first while I was working for a company called ADGA, and then more directly while I was working at Bristol Aerospace. Larry was always a friendly person and very willing to help me out even though initially I worked with another company. When I joined Bristol in the early 90’s I began to work even more closely with Larry. Larry was very skilled at building and testing rocket payloads and he didn’t hesitate to offer advice on how to design better payloads for assembly and operation. Often, as our designs progressed, we would invite Larry to our reviews to make sure we did not forget anything. Larry’s inputs were invaluable and helped lead Bristol to many rocket launch successes. I missed Larry’s friendliness, strong teamwork and exceptional technical talent when he retired to enjoy more family time. I am so glad that I was fortunate enough to know and work with Larry during his years at Bristol. Larry was truly a great rocket-man. Dave Beattie - Posted by: David Beattie (Colleague) on: Jan 16, 2023

  • Will really miss Larry.....I am glad all his lighted display is with us the rest of this winter.....See you later BUDDY !!! - Posted by: Phil Hugill (Neighbor across Street) on: Jan 16, 2023

  • Extending our heartfelt sympathy on the sudden passing of Larry Elder. Mrs. Elder & family so very sorry for your loss! Thank you for sharing this lovely tribute of his dedication to his community and family! It's evident that he touched alot of lives along the way. Thinking of you all at this sad and difficult time. Lynda Ruban staff & friends at the HSC Foundation - Posted by: Lynda D Ruban (staff at Health Sciences Centre Foundation) on: Jan 16, 2023

Thomson Funeral Home

Thomson Funeral Home

669 Broadway Ave. (Map)
Ph: 2047837211 | Visit Website

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