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Born: Mar 29, 1921

Date of Passing: Aug 22, 2014

Offer Condolences or Memory Make a donation to CancerCare Manitoba Foundation CancerCare Manitoba Foundation

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DAVID (DAVE) ALEXANDER DOWNIE August 22, 2014 It is with sadness that we announce the passing of Dave Downie at the Maples Care Home in Winnipeg. His final days were peaceful surrounded by his family. Dave is predeceased by his cherished wife Marg (Margaret Phillips). He will be dearly missed by his children Brenda (Charles), Ray (Julie), James (Shilo), Martin (Jenny), and his five grandchildren Sherrie (Steven), Trish (David), David, Jenna, Ellen, and five great-grandchildren Brooke-Lynn, Charles, Lorraine, Joshua, and Zackery. Dave was born in Wawanesa on March 29, 1921, the youngest of four children. Dave had a lifelong dedication to learning as evidenced by his B.A., B.Ed., MEd., and PhD. He also was passionate about moulding young lives "to create a more harmonious world." Dave started his career in Boissevain, and then moved back to Winnipeg where he taught at a number of different schools, eventually becoming the first Principal of Dakota Collegiate. During his career he became the Superintendent of Education for River East School Division, Winnipeg 1 Division and President of the Manitoba Association of School Superintendents. He also was adjunct professor for the Admin Department for the Faculty of Education at University of Winnipeg. In 1943 Dave joined the Royal Canadian Air Force where he proudly served as a navigator. Dave was presented with The Queen Elizabeth II Silver Jubilee Medal, which was awarded by the Governor-General of Canada to those who have made outstanding and exemplary contributions to their communities or to Canada as a whole. Dave was a member of the Committee for the Development of Education in the Caribbean whose mandate was to enhance the education in the region. He was also on the Board of Directors for the International Peace Garden Canada-US. It was at a Young People's outing at the local church, where he met Marg and they were married in June 1947. Dave and Marg shared a love of music and enjoyed spending time at their cottages at Red Rock Lake and Lake of the Woods. They loved to travel from camping in the tent trailer as a family to flying to exotic destinations. They were active members of Regent's Park United Church. Dave will be fondly remembered for his tenacity as well as a wonderful endearing mischievousness that endured till his final days. Ray, James and Martin want to thank their sister Brenda for her unwavering dedication to their dad's care and well-being particularly in the past few years. The family also want to thank the staff at Maples Care Home for their kindness and compassion, especially in Dave's final days. A private family service to celebrate Dave's life will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family requests honouring Dave's memory through an act of kindness or donation to CancerCare Manitoba, where Dave spent many hours volunteering after losing Marg to cancer.

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As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Aug 23, 2014

Condolences & Memories (13 entries)

  • So sorry to find out at this time of Dave's passing. Your father, grandfather and great grandfather spent many hours volunteering in the library at Cancer Care Manitoba. He was a valuable addition to the library but more than that he was a wonderful friend and mentor to all the library staff and volunteers and how lucky you all are as a family to have had such a wonderful father figure in your life. - Posted by: Donna Pacholok (Friend) on: Oct 25, 2014

  • Our condolences to our cousins on the passing of Uncle Dave. He had a life well spent filled with family, friends, community contribution and professional accomplishments. Well done Uncle Dave. Best regards to our cousins. - Posted by: Bill and Jean (Nephew and Niece) on: Sep 02, 2014

  • With sadness we learn of Uncle Dave's passing. I have fond memories of many family Christmases together and lakeside visits. Uncle Dave was an inspiration to all and will be greatly missed by many. The family has written a wonderful tribute to Dave's life. Merrill and I send our deepest condolences to the Downie family. - Posted by: Wayne Gilraine (Nephew) on: Aug 26, 2014

  • It's a long time ago that I met Dave and too long since I last saw him. But in hearing of his passing I had a powerful memory of his sweetness, joy, fullness and warmth. Always with a smile. A kind heart that will certainly be missed. Condolences to the family. James and David I send you our love. - Posted by: Susanne Cunningham (Friend) on: Aug 26, 2014

  • Mr. Dave Downie was the first principal of Dakota Collegiate which I was honored to graduate from in the first year - 63/64. He was an exceptional leader - quiet, brilliant and observant. He set a high bar that we all aspired to and he was an extremely positive influence on me. Many thanks. - Posted by: Roger Bartley (student) on: Aug 25, 2014

  • I was very fortunate to attend Dakota Collegiate in the school's first year and be active in student government. Mr. Downie was an inspiration to us all, as evidenced by the number of graduates from the first few years who went on to achieve success in the field of education. He was a wonderful mentor, a role model, and a leader in his profession. - Posted by: John Zaplatynsky (Student at Dakota Collegiate in 1963-64) on: Aug 25, 2014

  • Mr. Downie was an exceptional person, a gift to the education community--wise and committed and forward-thinking. I wonder how many hundreds of students were positively influenced by him, as I was. It was a special thrill to meet him again at Dakota’s 50th anniversary in May. - Posted by: Judith Hammill (Glenwood and Dakota student) on: Aug 25, 2014

  • So very sorry to hear of Mr. Downie's passing. Deepest sympathies to his family. - Posted by: Dunc Malcolm ( Formet Dakota student) on: Aug 25, 2014

  • I met Dave in the early 80s when he and I both started at the Winnipeg School Division during a time when significant administrative changes were being implemented. Having met Marg previously through her work at MASS, Dave and I became friends and worked well together. I learned a lot from him and will always remember the twinkle in his eyes. It’s nice to see that twinkle again in the newspaper photo. Dave talked a lot about his kids and grandchildren and I felt like I got to know each of you a bit without having met you. I also met Marg’s sister Jean and her husband Frank one summer boating on Lake of the Woods. My sincerest sympathy to all of you. - Posted by: Pat Drew (Work Colleague) on: Aug 25, 2014

  • Sorry to hear of your father's passing. - Posted by: Neil Johnston (Childhood friend of Martin) on: Aug 24, 2014

  • My condolences to the Downie family on the loss of Uncle Dave! - Posted by: George Gilraine (Nephew) on: Aug 24, 2014

  • Margaret was my one and only sibling. David is now at peace in heaven with Margaret. He has enjoyed a long and interesting life. Brenda did an outstanding job as the only daughter and we thank you for all your love and care. Jean Hickson/Gilraine/Phillips - Posted by: jean hickson/gilraine/phillips (niece) on: Aug 24, 2014

  • Just s short note to recognize the life of Uncle Dave. Although we did not have much contact in recent years I have fond momories of visits to his house when I was young. Brenda, I too would like to thank you for your dedication to your Dad. My condolences and best wishes for the future. - Posted by: Bob Swain (Nephew) on: Aug 23, 2014

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