It is with heavy hearts we announce the passing of John, at the age of 88. John passed away peacefully at St. Boniface Hospital after a lengthy and valiant battle with cancer in the early morning of October 29th, 2023, with his two loving daughters by his side.

John became an ironworker for local 728 on August 1, 1963, working with various companies in Manitoba, with most of his time working for Dominion Bridge. His career sent him on many travels for work such as; Hawaii, Giliam, Long Spruce, and Deluth, to name a few. He became a scuba diver and was accredited for underwater welding. He was instrumental in bringing in the pension benefits program for the members of Iron Worker’s Local 728 in the 1980’s. As quoted by Rob Duarte, Business Manager, FS/T of The Ironworkers Local 728 “John paved the way for the iron workers today”.

After retiring, John worked with Manitoba Lotteries at McPhillips Street Station Casino as a shuttle bus driver, where he made many life-long friends. Most recently he was employed with the Manitoba Metis Federation Central Registry Office, where he was the first driver of the mobile office unit travelling to various Metis Communities throughout Manitoba with his CRO team known as ‘Johnny’s Angels’.

John’s greatest accomplishments in life were his children, his grand children, great-grand children, and great-great grand children.

John will be lovingly remembered by his daughters Cheryl Lee and Jackie Lee, his wife Espie, and son Raymond Ayson (Chanelle); his 7 grandchildren, Candice (David), Christa (Hess), Mike (Leeata), Chantel, Bradly (Kara), Angel, and Cairo, 22 great-grand children, and 3 great-great-grandchildren along with several nieces and nephews, his only surviving sister-in-law Donna Zaitzoff.

John was predeceased by his Mother & Father, Elma the mother of his daughters, daughter Beverely (Kim), and great-grand son Kylen.

Honorary Pallbearers are Mike Lee, Gage Lee, Darryl Young, Carl Smith, Carter Lee, Dominic Lee, Bradley Rupert and Kason Lavallee.

Thank you to the wonderful, kind, caring nurses and doctors in the palliative care unit at St. Boniface Hospital. As well as the Home care team, CancerCare Manitoba, and all the doctors and nurses for the love and care provided to John and the family.

In lieu of flowers, family recommends donations to St. Boniface General Hospital, Palliative Care Unit.

Funeral service will be held at Cropo Funeral Chapel, 1442 Main Street, Winnipeg, MB on Sunday November 5th, 2023 at 1:00 pm. Cremation to follow.

Everyone is welcome to join us in the reception area following the service.


Funeral Service

1:00 pm
Sunday, November 5, 2023
Cropo Funeral Chapel
1442 Main Street
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
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