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DAMIAN LEWIS MILLS

Date of Passing: Nov 17, 2003

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DAMIAN LEWIS MILLS "MONK" 1979 - 2003 Peacefully, in his sleep, on Monday, November 17, 2003, Damian passed away at home at the tender age of 24 years. He leaves to cherish his memory forever, his parents, Dr. Barry and Rona Mills; sisters, Cressida and Eleanor (Chad) baby niece Olivia; uncle Wyn Lewis (Pam) aunt and uncle, Eileen and Keith Sykes; cousins, Kirsty and Naomi and their families all from England. Also grieving is his aunt Helen Mills (Winston) from Auckland, New Zealand. Damian will be sadly missed by his Godchildren, Olivia Mills and Nathan Gooi; his cricketing family from across Canada and his many friends from school, University of Manitoba and MTS. He was predeceased by his paternal grandparents, Jim and Mercia Mills; maternal grandparents, Ivor and Winnifred Lewis and cousin Helen Sykes. Damian was born on Sunday, July 15, 1979, at the Health Sciences Centre in Winnipeg. He then returned to Deloraine where he lived for the next four years. Damian moved to Winnipeg with his family in 1983 and has lived in St. James ever since. He attended St. Charles Academy from Kindergarten to Grade 8. While there, he was deeply involved in sports; volleyball, basketball and a taste of rugby. We will never forget Damians lead singing roles in two Christmas concerts. During this time he also excelled in community soccer (Woodhaven C.C.) and joined a Magic Club seizing every opportunity to perform. He also found time to study piano at the Manitoba Conservatory of Music, achieving his Grade VII Exam. Damian graduated from St. Charles Academy in 1993 and upon graduating, he received the Leadership Award and also the Citizenship Award, awarded in memory of a fellow student who had recently died tragically. He went on to St. Pauls High School in Grade 9 and represented the school for many years in volleyball. Damian graduated in 1997 and entered the University of Manitoba. At the time of his death, he was in his final year in the Faculty of Management. At the age of nine, Damian became involved with the sport of cricket which rapidly became his passion. During the next fifteen years, he played with the Winnipeg Juniors Team, always as an opening batsman and captaining the team in his last three years. Damian represented Manitoba at many inter-provincial tournaments and won many best batsman awards, both provincially and inter-provincially. Damian played for Canada for the first time in 1997 in the International Youth Tournament in Bermuda and again in 1998 at the Nortel West Indies Youth Tournament in Trinidad and Tobago. In 1999, Damian was selected to two Canadian teams, Canada Under 23 and the Canadian National Senior Team. In October of 1999 Damian played for Canada in the West Indies Cricket Boards Red Stripe Bowl in Antigua and again in the 2000 Red Stripe Bowl. He toured India as an invited member of the Ilford (U.K.) Team and spent four months playing cricket in Auckland, New Zealand, developing his skills. Not content with merely playing cricket, he committed himself to coaching many junior players at summer camps and school indoor camps. He completed an Umpires course and acted as statistician for the Manitoba Cricket Association. Damian also developed a web page for his team, the Winnipeg Juniors. His achievements have been encouraged and developed in large part by his coach of many years, Ron Dipchand. He was committed to developing an increasingly strong cricket programme in Manitoba. Damian was baptized in St. Antonius Church in Deloraine and received his first communion at St. Paul The Apostle Church in Winnipeg, where he was also confirmed. At the age of eight, he became an altar server and served until he was 21 years old. During this time, he helped to train many young servers to follow in his footsteps. For the past four years, Damian has worked at MTS as a Residential High Speed Representative for Internet Services, balancing work with his University classes. Despite his hectic schedule, he maintained a strict training programme in support of his cricketing endeavours and always went out of his way to please others. He had a ready wit and loved nothing better than a long animated discussion on politics, ethics, or current affairs. Damian was a humble multi-talented young man, who willingly gave of himself whenever an opportunity arose. He had strong family ties which he cherished and protected and he leaves a huge hole in the hearts of all who knew him. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated this morning, Saturday, November 22 at 11:00 a.m. in his family church, St. Paul The Apostle Roman Catholic Church, 2400 Portage Ave., Winnipeg with Rev. Msgr. Ward Jamieson presiding. For those who wish, viewing will be held one hour prior. A reception will follow Mass in the lower Parish Hall. Damians entombment will then take place in the Queen of Heaven Mausoleum, Assumption Roman Catholic Cemetery, 3990 Portage Ave. Honorary Pallbearers will be the members of his cricket team, the Winnipeg Juniors and Mr. John Lovelace, the President of the MCA. Active Pallbearers will be Keith Sykes (uncle), Tom Kyle (close family friend), Hean Gooi (family doctor and close family friend), Ron Dipchand (cricket coach), Joe Lovelace (cricket team member), Barry Tobin (Confirmation Sponsor), Michael Ragasa and Chris Bullock (longtime school friends), Miles Nickel (altar server mentor). Our family wishes to acknowledge the compassion and understanding of the Emergency Response Team, the Winnipeg Police and the Medical Examiner. We have been overwhelmed and humbled by the outpourings of sympathy and the loving support of friends, which we have received on a daily basis. It has been a great comfort to hear the touching and often humorous stories Damians many friends and colleagues have shared with us. We have learned so much more about every aspect of Damians life which has truly been a gift to us. We deeply appreciate the caring direction of Wojciks Funeral Chapel and the uplifting and hopeful words of support and comfort from Father Vince Herner, Msgr. Ward Jamieson and Rev. Allan Saunders of Victoria, BC. As an expression of sympathy, in lieu of flowers, donations in Damians memory may be made to the World Vision Child Sponsorship Program or the Damian Mills Junior Cricket Trust Fund, in care of Manitoba Cricket Association, 307 - 200 Main St., Winnipeg, MB R3C 4M2. FOR DAMIAN Break away slowly, Pull too hard, and my heart will break. Ease the threads of your life Gently out of the tapestry of my existence. Catch your star, But let me share its guiding light To guide me too, As we move apart and then away. Take my love And with it weave the special dreams, That will enrich your life And reveal the treasure of the man you are. Embrace the child, Who will always be a part of you And I will hold close The man who will always be a part of me. GRADUATION FROM ST. PAULS HIGH SCHOOL JUNE 1997 "We love you, Monk!" WOJCIKS ALL BELIEFS & FAITHS FUNERAL CHAPEL & CREMATORIUM 897 - 4665

As published in the Winnipeg Free Press on Nov 22, 2003

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