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Obituary

DONALD G. JACKS (published on February 17, 2010)



DONALD G. JACKS, CLU September 14, 1924 - February 12, 2010 Dad disliked long obituaries... After successfully beating two other cancers over 18 years, Dad passed away peacefully with family by his side at the Grace Hospice. He is survived by his loving wife of 58 years Dorothy (Macleay); son Allan (Evelyn) of Winnipeg and children Cordell and Donald; daughter Barbara (Greg) Davenport of Okotoks, AB and children Talia, Taylor and Austin; daughter Lori (Mark) Cullen of Edmonton, AB and children Jacqueline and Nicola; granddaughter Becky Jacks and children Gabriel and Makenna Aymont; and granddaughter Ashley Jacks; and Becky and Ashley's father Jeff Swan. Dad is also survived by brother Dr. Quentin Jacks and sister Yvonne Millar and many nieces, nephews and cousins. He was predeceased by his parents Douglas and Mary, brother Milton, daughter Beverley and nephew Douglas. According to Dad he was born 85 years ago in a ditch on the way to the pump in McTaggart, SK. He attended school in Brandon, playing hockey for the Brandon Elks (now the Wheat Kings). He passed on an offer to try out for the New York Rangers to join the navy during the Second World War. Upon his return he attended Brandon College, St. Paul's Collegiate in Winnipeg and the University of Manitoba, where Dad commenced a lifelong connection with Phi Delta Theta fraternity. Dad started as a travelling salesman with Canada Paint. Always the entrepreneur, he also sold pens with attached cigarette lighters (until discovering they could ignite in a pocket!) His career took him to Toronto, Hamilton, Regina, Burlington and back to Winnipeg in sales and management positions with North American Life, Income Life (co-founder), Crown Life and Rice Insurance and Financial. Dad also consulted with firms in Canada and the US. His entrepreneurial drive led him to found U R Tax Services (now Liberty Tax), purchase the marina at Clear Lake, and numerous buildings and properties throughout Manitoba and Florida. In 1977, Dad was proud to purchase, the building at 2579 Portage Ave. with the Long Tramp mural painted on it. Having passed this mural during childhood trips to Winnipeg, Dad outbid others to acquire the building from the estate of the original owner. He commissioned Evelyn's father Harry Schimke to repaint and conserve what has since been determined to be Winnipeg's first mural and a historical landmark. Dad was active in many service clubs, recreational and sports clubs and business associations and was thankful for his 26 year association with Alcoholics Anonymous. He was an inspiration and support to many. He was proud of 50 years as a Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU). He served with Rotary, Kiwanis, Free Masons and the Scottish Rite. He was a former member of the Manitoba Club and a 40 year member of the steamers at the Winnipeg Winter Club. Dad's spiritual upbringing and unconditional faith inspired the start of his dream to establish a non-denominational multipurpose fellowship hall in Onanole, just south of Clear Lake. The Cottage on the North Shore of Clear Lake, built by his father and cherished by five generations, was Mom and Dad's lifelong favourite getaway and family gathering place. Dad loved to take dogs, family, friends and people he just met, on leisurely cruises, always approaching the dock with his famous whistle. His display of four waving flags, (changed often to honour family and visitors) were always a welcome landmark. Winters in Florida also held many special memories. Dad was a promoter, recruiter and mentor. He loved to promote people and their ideas and was passionate about ensuring their success (often in spite of their own belief in themselves). His sense of humor, artistic talents and his amazing GIFT to create lifelong friendships with complete strangers, are but a few of his most memorable traits that have touched so many lives. Dad's life was about people, and creating relationships. Dad always made it a priority to attend the sports, music and dance activities of all nine grandchildren (often many in the same day) and was recognized in the crowd by his powerful two-finger whistles and his always-encouraging vocal support. His legacy is an incredibly strong family bond through all of the generations. Most unforgettably, Dad never, ever complained. His answer was always an uplifting: Terrific , whenever anyone would ask how he was doing. His artistic side led him to hand paint rocks with delicate flowers and his cartoons and caricatures adorned every note and envelope he sent. Dad specifically requested thanks be extended the many medical teams, health care aids, volunteers and cleaning staff who helped along his journey: including Department of Veterans Affairs, St. Boniface Hospital E6, CancerCare, Winnipeg Clinic, Shaftesbury Park Retirement Residence, the Grace Hospice and many others. Special thanks to his physician, Dr. Rolly Hayward. A Funeral Service will be held on Friday, February 19, at 3:00 p.m. at Trinity United Church, 933 Summerside Avenue, in Ft. Richmond. Interment will take place this summer at Clear Lake. In lieu of flowers donations in memory of Dad can be made to the Grace Hospice c/o The Grace Hospital Foundation, 300 Booth Drive, Winnipeg, Manitoba R3J 3M7, in Memory of Donald G. Jacks, or to the Haitian Relief Fund at the charity or your choice. Sorry about the length Dad, you were larger than life ! One day at a time.


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