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Born: Jan 14, 1919

Date of Passing: Dec 07, 2019

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January 14, 1919 - December 7, 2019

It is with gratitude for a life well lived that we announce the passing of Dad and Grandpa just five weeks short of his 101st birthday.
Dad made a difference to all of our lives and taught us how to enjoy the moments and all the celebrations in life. He was always planning the next project, trip or party.
He was recognized with the Order of Canada and the Order of Manitoba for his work with Hydro development in Manitoba and HVDC (High Voltage Direct Current) internationally. He was ahead of his time promoting Hydroelectric development over coal fired electricity. He was the first Canadian ever invited to chair a committee of CIGRE (Congres International des Grandes Reseaux Electriques), the committee on HVDC and was actively engaged with the work of CIGRE from 1968 to the late 1980s. He joined Winnipeg Hydro and then moved to Manitoba Hydro in 1956 rising to the position of Chairman and Chief Executive Officer in 1972. He always felt privileged to work with his team of exceptional engineers during the largest capital expansion in the history of the utility.
Dad set up his own company, Bateman and Associated Ltd., in 1979 and was privileged to serve clients in the United Kingdom, Brazil, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland and Canada who were seeking his expertise in HVDC. One of his favourite jobs was when he was asked by Hydro Quebec to assemble an international technical oversight committee for the massive hydroelectric development Hydro Quebec undertook in the 1980s. He chaired this group for quite a number of years and the members became like a second family. During this time Mom and Dad saw a lot of the world and loved every minute of it! He authored many technical papers, and presented them in many countries including Canada, Brazil, United Kingdom, Russia, India, China and the United States.
The profession he loved so much bestowed many honours on him. One of the most prestigious was the National Gold Medal given to him in 1994 by the Canadian Council of Professional Engineers for his contributions to the profession. His service to the profession included a six-year term on the Council of the Manitoba Association, starting in 1952 and another four-year term starting in 1982, as well as rising to serve as President of many national engineering organizations.
Dad really enjoyed the meetings of the Canadian Society for Senior Engineers and attended a meeting just weeks before his passing. As the founder of this group it was quite fitting that was his final meeting.
Dad attended Kelvin High School, United College and University of Manitoba graduating with both a B.Sc.E.E. and M.Sc. Mom always said their son Gary (who predeceased Dad in 2009) was so brilliant because Dad read him his thesis when he was a baby.
Dad felt very blessed with his career as an Engineer. Remembering how hard it had been for him to stay at university in third year, Dad created a scholarship for a third year Engineering student in 2009. Since that time, his scholarship fund has provided over $60,000 to worthy students and the fund has grown so two students are now helped every year.
It would be wonderful if you chose to join Dad helping these students with a contribution in his memory to the Len Bateman Scholarship. Just email
We have many family celebrations to remember fondly. Summers at the cottage Mom and Dad bought in 1950, annual family camping trips including the "Odyssey" to California in 1965, and the cruise to Alaska that Mom and Dad took the whole family on to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary in 1993. Dad still loved going to the cottage and hearing the waves crash. Dad loved it all.
Dad and Mom were avid symphony goers and Dad had the same tickets from when the Concert Hall opened till this year. He was very honoured when Daniel Raskin came to visit with him this past January on the occasion of Dad's 100th Birthday and heartily welcomed him to Winnipeg.
Dad's family of beloved memory includes his parents, Arthur and Mabel (Guest), Eileen (Campbell), his wife of 54 years, their son Gary, his siblings, Winifred, Doris and John, and Mary (Hall).
He is lovingly remembered by his daughters, Donna Blakeman Welch (Terry Panych), Joyce Bateman (Darrell Hancock), and his five grandchildren, Cameron Bateman (Daisy), David Bateman (Miriam) and their children (his great-grandchildren, Sebastian, Sophie and Nicholas), Benjamin Bateman, Calvin Hancock (Brittany Tovee) and AJ Hancock - his only granddaughter. He was so very proud of all of their accomplishments.
Dad was elated that every one of his grandchildren plus his niece and nephew, Heather (Campbell) McLaren and Gordon Campbell, came to the party he threw when he turned 100. He felt grateful they made the journey from Alameda, CA, Washington, DC, Burlington, Ottawa and Phoenix, AZ.
Dad enjoyed living at 65 Paget in the last decade and was thrilled he was able to live independently. We so appreciated the support of all the people who made that possible. There he enjoyed his garden, the book club and the seasonal gatherings. He so appreciated his neighbours and their many kindnesses to him.
Dad was always interested in life right to his last breath.
He had many interests. As a young man, Dad was a biking enthusiast. He won the Winnipeg Kenora bike race several times in the 1930s. He was an expert woodworker, building a motorboat when we were little. And he loved reciting Eleanor Wheeler Wilcox poems by memory. Dad started Pilates lessons when he was 91 and took up water colour lessons at the age of 99. When Dad learned in early December that Camerons' wife, Daisy Bateman, is releasing her first novel in June of 2020, he immediately pre-ordered copies for his book club members and some friends. He was always looking forward to life's next event.
Dad was always learning, always thinking and always there for all of us. Dad was a humble, kind and gentle man. We will miss him with our hearts and minds and know that he is always with us.
A celebration of his life will be held on December 30, 2019, at St. Peters Anglican Church, Grant and Elm at 10:30 a.m. Hopefully by then our hearts will have had a little more time to handle the enormous loss we are feeling. We learned from Dad to always be working on the next project, to always be planning the next celebration and to always be grateful for what we have.

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Dec 14, 2019

Condolences & Memories (8 entries)

  • As backyard neighbours for many years at Ponemah I remember with great fondness, Mr. Bateman and his wonderful family. - Posted by: Andrea Laird (Friend) on: Jan 11, 2020

  • Extending our heartfelt sympathy and sadness to the Bateman family on the passing of Leonard A. Bateman. Thank you sharing this wonderful tribute and remarkable legacy of a community champion and an inspired life. As a valued member of the HSC Foundation family he will be missed. 'You can't use up creativity. the more you use, the more you have' - Maya Angelou. Thinking of you at this sad time staff and friends at the Health Sciences Centre foundation - Posted by: Lynda Ruban (staff at Health Sciences Centre Foundation) on: Dec 30, 2019

  • My heart goes out to you Joyce. May God keep you. Having lost my father almost 5 years ago; I feel your loss Blessings. - Posted by: janice Fotheringham (nee Pheifer) (friend ) on: Dec 29, 2019

  • If only there were something that friends could say or do... Some way they might express their thoughts and help to comfort you... And yet, perhaps, just knowing that there are so many of those who care... Will help at least in some small way, to ease the loss you bear. - Posted by: Hydro-X Group (Friends) on: Dec 17, 2019

  • Len was always an inspiration to those who knew him. At Hydro, in the community and at the CSSE meetings. Our sincere condolences to Joyce and the family. We will all be grieving his loss, but buoyed up by the story of his wonderful life. - Posted by: David Grant (Fellow Hydro Engineer) on: Dec 17, 2019

  • Len was a Champion for the Engineering Institute of Canada (EIC) and the Canadian Society for/of Senior Engineers (CSSE). Len provided critical leadership along with fellow Board Members in our early years and in transitioning to the CSSE from the EIC's Life Members' Organization (LMO) where Len was the last LMO President and first CSSE President, Even up into his late 90s, we always enjoyed Len's presence and wisdom at our AGMS. - Posted by: Ken Putt (Colleague in the EIC and CSSE) on: Dec 15, 2019

  • My condolences to you Joyce and your family. I remember your Dad coming to visit you when we both worked at Western Economic Diversification on the 7th floor. I would be at the front desk at times to greet him. A real class act who always made sure to acknowledge me during those visits. He was very sweet to me and said "Hello, Dear" with a kind smile. I never forgot that! You would beam introducing your Dad, such a lovely man. It was an honour to have met him all those years ago. You could tell he was so proud of you Joyce and adored you so much. I am sending my thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. I am so very sorry for your loss. - Posted by: Brenda Letain (Friend/Former Co-Worker to Joyce Bateman) on: Dec 14, 2019

  • Thinking of you and your family at this difficult time - Posted by: Taras and Janice Sokolyk (Friend) on: Dec 14, 2019

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