Vance Claire

Obituary of Vance Claire

Vance Michael Patrick La Claire May 12, 1948-December 14, 2008 It is with deep sadness that the family announces the passing of Vance La Claire. He was a pillar of strength for all who knew him and his absence will be felt immensely. Vance was predeceased by his Baba, his father, Vance Sr., and his mother, Pat. He is survived by his son, Brent, his daughter, Lia, fianc�, James, ex-wife, Rina (Bill), the Kushniers, his Uncle Nick and Auntie Anne. Vance was a constant presence in his kids' lives, providing unconditional love, support, advice, imagination, adventure and laughter. He was his kids' greatest cheerleader, and his contribution to their lives helped them to grow into remarkable adults. Vance was born and raised in Winnipeg's North End. He became an accomplished pianist at a young age and had the opportunity to play for CBC radio on numerous occasions. He attained a Commerce Degree at the University of Manitoba and spent many years in the hospitality industry. During these years, he began many friendships that were continued throughout his life. Vance moved onto real estate later in his career and was very proud of his association with Coldwell Banker and the people that he worked with. He was an astute businessman and offered his time and experience to anyone who was open to learning. He also had a longstanding relationship with the Lions Club of Winnipeg- he was on the board of directors and enjoyed many years with the organization. Vance had numerous hobbies, some of which included golfing, fishing and playing pool. He had countless "fishing trips with the boys" which resulted in lifelong competitions of who could catch the bigger fish. The greens of Pine Ridge, Niakwa and Falcon Lake provided him with fresh air, good laughs, and friendly bets with family and friends over who could achieve the better score. He spoke fondly of his times on the course and these memories were irreplaceable to him. Vance taught Brent to play pool at a young age, helping him to reach the top of the table by finding crates for him to stand on. This hobby was maintained throughout each of their lives and resulted in father-son times that Vance held very close to his heart. Vance's favourite retreat was his cabin at Falcon Lake- his most memorable times were spent swimming at the end of the lake, fishing at all of the "secret spots" and simply having friends over for bbq meals. The cabin became his second home and he took care of it with pride. Lia and Brent spent much time at the lake, and Vance valued the summers that Lia worked at Falcon as it provided more time to "just hang out with each other". Beyond this, the cabin allowed for him to become very close with Gregg Jr., Mitchell and Lianne Amborsky, Kristen and Mathew Rurarz and Jeremy Lane, also known as his "Falcon Lake Crew". He used to spend night after night spinning bedtime stories for them and day after day taking them out on the lake. Their Uncle Vance was very important to them and they will all cherish his memory. Vance had a real gift when it came to storytelling. He knew when a person needed a pick-me-up and was always the first to offer help or a hug. He was proud to say that Marion, Gregg, Kim, George, Larry, Craig and Zane were his best friends and truly appreciated every moment he has had with them over the years. He lit up when he told stories about each of them, and as a result, he lit up often. He would have done anything for his friends, as he knew the feeling was mutual. Also gratefully acknowledged are the friendships of Janice Amborksy, Debbie Rurarz and Jeannie and Jessie Lenkiewicz. In 2004, Vance met Lia in Australia where they traveled together for one month. The adventures, experiences and laughter that were shared on that trip are memories that both Lia and her dad are very grateful for. He was very much looking forward to Lia's upcoming wedding to James Wright, for whom he had great love and respect. He talked about how happy he was that he would be sharing in this occasion and could hardly wait to walk her down the aisle. Daddy-o, we love you so much and know you'll always be looking out for us. Prayers will be held on Friday, December 19, at 7:00 p.m., and the Funeral Service will be on Saturday, December 20, at 11:00 a.m. at Cropo Funeral Chapel (1442 Main Street). Interment to follow in Glen Eden Memorial Gardens. Donations, in Vance's memory may be made to the Lions Club of Winnipeg (610 Portage Ave., R3C 0G5). An online book of condolences may be signed at CROPO FUNERAL CHAPEL 586-8044
A Memorial Tree was planted for Vance
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Cropo Funeral Home
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