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RICK BORLAND Obituary pic


Born: Jul 12, 1945

Date of Passing: Jul 07, 2021

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July 12, 1945 – July 7, 2021

On July 7, 2021, Rick quietly passed at Riverview Palliative Care Unit after a courageous battle with cancer.
Rick will be lovingly remembered by his wife Heather, and sons, Jonathan (Lisa, Owen and Delilah), and Trevor (Roselle, Sophia and Stella), surviving nephew, Riley Peake, sister-in-law Helen Holmes, their families, and many cousins. He was predeceased by his parents, Olga and Lloyd Borland, sister Judy Peake, nephew Bryan Peake, and brothers-in-law, Ron Peake and Jim Holmes.
Rick was born and raised in Winnipeg and attended Kelvin High School, the University of Manitoba (Civil Engineering) and the University of Waterloo (Master's in Transportation Planning).
In 1967 Rick began his career with the City of Winnipeg as the Transportation Planning Engineer. In 1980 he became the Director of Transit at the age of 35, making him the youngest Director. During his time with Transit Rick oversaw transportation for the Pope's visit, two Grey Cups, the Pan Am games and two snowstorms in 1986 and 1997 that shut the city down completely. Transit, to Rick was like his second family, and he was always so proud of the dedication everyone showed during these challenging events.
Rick was someone people sought out for advice when they were struggling. He was always there to listen, never told you what to do, but helped guide you to find the answer he knew you were capable of finding. His family and co-workers will always love and admire him for this skill.
Rick was so proud of his sons and shared with them his passion of tennis and squash. He loved having Trevor coach him at the National Squash Championships, where he won a Canadian record 16 national titles. He was proud of Jonathan following in his footsteps and working at Transit for 15 years, keeping him up to date on all that was going on.
When Rick retired, he and Heather spent many years travelling, enjoying the heat of Ixtapa, Mexico, in winter and taking extended trips across Europe during the summer months. He loved planning the trips as much as going on them and helped many friends and family plan their trips. He was definitely the "go to" person for vacation trip planning advice.
Rick and Heather loved each other dearly and would have been married for 54 years on July 22, 2021. To love and be loved in return is one of life's greatest gifts.
We will always love you and carry you in our hearts. Thank you for everything Dad, be at peace.
Thank you to Dr. Johan Jacobs, CancerCare's Dr. Czaykowski and nurse Denise, CancerCare Victoria Hospital's Dr. Beshara and nurse Eleanor, and everyone at Riverview Palliative Care 3E, you are the best.
Thank you to all our neighbours and friends who took Rick and Heather into their warm embrace during this journey. We are forever grateful.
If friends so desire, donations may be made to one of the facilities listed above.
A Celebration of Life will be held when restrictions permit.
Publish Date: Jul 17, 2021

July 12, 1945 - July 7, 2021

It is with great sadness Rick's family announces his passing after a courageous battle with cancer.
Longer obituary to follow.

Publish Date: Jul 10, 2021

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Jul 10, 2021, Jul 17, 2021

Condolences & Memories (21 entries)

  • My sincere condolences to Heather and her family. Rick and I were classmates at the University of Waterloo studying towards our masters degree in transportation engineering on the late 1960s. I still have fond memories of those days. - Posted by: Andrew Vandertol (Classmate ) on: Oct 10, 2021

  • Heather, I was so sorry to hear of Rick’s passing. You spoke so fondly of him when we would walk and work out at rehfit. My prayers are with you and your family. - Posted by: Kerry taylor (Friend of heather) on: Aug 13, 2021

  • I knew Rick as the former Director of Winnipeg Transit, where I started working a few years after his retirement. Even years later, people still talked a lot about how much they liked and respected him, and how great it was to work there when he was the Director. I didn't know him too well, but did talk with him many times at various Transit events. He maintained a keen interest in Winnipeg Transit and our wonderful city, and I always enjoyed hearing his perspective. He was a very kind and intelligent man, and I was happy to know him in the small way that I did. He made this city a better place. - Posted by: Bjorn Radstrom (Friend) on: Jul 20, 2021

  • Rick Borland was the best Director Transit had. He welcomed the female drivers to Transit, the first female being hired in 1974. Because Rick was a visionary he saw the value that women brought to Winnipeg Transit. He always saw the person first not their gender. I was hired in 1985, I enjoyed my bus driving job immensely. When I decided to publish a comic book on Life in the Curb Lane, I brought the rough draft to him and asked if I could go ahead with it. Rick thought it was an incredible idea and said go do it. He always welcomed anyone into his office, had coffee in the FRG canteen and I think he knew every bus driver by name. I had the privilege of having him on my bus several times to take him to play tennis on his lunch break. My sincere condolences to Heather and family. Especially to Jonathan Borland who I met on several occasions while he worked at Transit. Rick holds a special place in my heart and memories . I am thankful for having the privilege of having Rick as my boss at Winnipeg Transit. I retired in January, 2021 after nearly 36 years behind the wheel. - Posted by: Kathie Klassen (Co worker) on: Jul 20, 2021

  • On and off the court Rick was a true gentleman...somebody who was always willing to talk to you and always with a smile. He will be missed by so many and my thoughts are with his family - Posted by: Jonathan Hill (Friend ) on: Jul 20, 2021

  • I am deeply saddened to hear of Rick’s death. Our families got to know each other about 70 years ago at the Wildewood Club playing tennis and badminton. Lloyd Borland was my tennis instructor, Rick was my first doubles partner in badminton, and Judy won many titles in badminton with my brother Ted in mixed doubles. I extend my sympathy and very best wishes to Heather, their sons, and the whole family. Ken Ransby — Naples, Florida - Posted by: Ken Ransby (Friend) on: Jul 20, 2021

  • I was so sad to hear of Rick's passing. I remember him with fondness as a very kind and caring man who valued his family above all else. My sincere condolences to you Heather, Jonathan and Trevor and your families. He will be missed by all who knew him. Sincerely, Colleen Link - Posted by: Colleen Link (Friend) on: Jul 17, 2021

  • I was deeply saddened to learn of Rick’s passing. Without a doubt he was the absolute best Director of any City Department and the best ever to guide the Transit Department. His vision and determination were inspiring to those of us that were blessed to report to him. He was not only our Director but also a mentor to many of us and I’m proud to have been one of his team. He will be missed as much as he will continue to be admired. My thoughts and prayers are with Heather and the boys. - Posted by: Daniel Kirk (Co worker) on: Jul 17, 2021

  • So saddened to hear of Rick's passing. Condolences to his family. Although I only had a few meetings with him, I always felt he listened to anything I had to say and he had that way of letting you know that he really heard you. I remember seeing him out on the front lines during the 99 Pan Am Games and he was so approachable. I remember giving him a honk of the horn on my bus as I saw him enter the Squash club on Donald and he always gave a wave back at you. He was missed at Transit after his retirement. May he Rest In Peace. - Posted by: Elaine Nicholl (co work) on: Jul 17, 2021

  • Barb and I are saddened by Rick’s passing. I’ve had the privilege of knowing Rick for many many years through the squash club. In my opinion, he and Henry Thiessen put the Winnipeg Squash Club on the world map! And he was a fine person as well. I will miss him. Ross Parke - Posted by: Ross Parke (Winnipeg squash racquet club) on: Jul 16, 2021

  • I have very fond memories of Rick, both from Winnipeg Transit and from when he was Chair of the Employee Benefits Board. Rick was an excellent leader and also a true gentleman and a man of integrity. My condolences to his wife Heather and his family. - Posted by: Ken Hayes (Work Related Friend) on: Jul 14, 2021

  • A very saddening news to hear that Rick Borland passed away. The news brought back past memories of working with him in Transit. As the Director of City’s Transit Department, Rick Borland had a very dedicative service for more than 25 years. Much of the Winnipeg Transit success should be attributed to his strong leadership skills, technical expertise, and his commitment to provide an excellent public transportation to the citizens of Winnipeg. There are not that many individuals who excelled both in Sports and Managerial skills. As a person, who worked with him in Transit for over 20 years, I used to admire his integrity, kindness and respect for all individuals. My sincere and heartfelt condolences to Rick Borland’s family. - Posted by: Varghese Cherian (Co-Worker) on: Jul 14, 2021

  • Rick was Director of Transit for much of my time in city government. He believed in the necessity of good public transit and pursued innovative ways and means to make our transit system better and better. I always appreciated discussing these issues with him. He was friendly, engaged in his work, and dedicated to excellent public service. Sincere condolences to Rick's family in your time of loss and sorrow. He will be missed by many. - Posted by: Jae Eadie (former City Councillor) on: Jul 12, 2021

  • Rick Borland created Winnipeg Transit into a modern transportation division by being open to new ideas and embracing innovations. It was a pleasure to work with Rick for 24 years. Our condolences to his family. - Posted by: Margaret & Brian Keller (co-worker) on: Jul 11, 2021

  • My and Sharon's sincere condolences to Heather and family on Rick's passing. During my lengthy Transit career, I had many work related dealings with this man of integrity and wisdom. Rick's leadership within the Department was not only valuable but futuristic. Rest in peace friend. - Posted by: Martin Kaczkowski (Transit Co-worker) on: Jul 10, 2021

  • I met him through Handi Transit meetings. He seemed very nice. I'm a writer and I'd like to write a poem. Gone but not forgotten, your pain is now over, God enters you into his valley. - Posted by: Joyce Lancaster (client) on: Jul 10, 2021

  • Rick was always a good guy. He had time for you no matter what your position was. He will be missed. - Posted by: Darren Ralke (Employee) on: Jul 10, 2021

  • Mr. Borland improved my life by being in it! Always a kind word, words of encouragement and an incredible listening ear!! He improved and made my life better! He cared! I have him to thank for being where I am today! Deepest condolences to the family!! He will be sorely missed! - Posted by: Valerie Ralke (Co-worker) on: Jul 10, 2021

  • What a shock to read of his obituary! My condolences to Heather and family. I first met Rick 50 years ago at the Winnipeg Lawn Tennis Club. He excelled at tennis and everything else he did! The kind of excellence he exemplified does not come along very often. Peace to Rick and family. - Posted by: Mac Horsburgh (Tennis) on: Jul 10, 2021

  • I had the pleasure of working with Rick and always respected him. My sincerest condolences to the family. - Posted by: Gail Lamoureux (Work Associate) on: Jul 10, 2021

  • My condolences to Rick's family. I will always remember him as a man of integrity. He treated everyone with dignity and respect. It was a pleasure to work with him and for him. He was always approachable. I don't think I ever saw him without a smile. I would consider him to be a wonderful man and an inspirational leader. He will be missed. - Posted by: Danny Smith (Coworker) on: Jul 10, 2021

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