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Bruce Phipps McDonald

Nov. 5, 1918 to May 10, 2005

McDonald, Bruce.jpgBruce was born in Portage la Prairie to parents William Wallace McDonald, who died in 1929, and Annie Mae Phipps McDonald, who died in 1955.  He attended school in Portage until his older sister, Mary, was accepted at United College in Winnipeg. His mom, sister and he moved to the city, where he completed high school and then entered law school, graduating in 1941.

His first job in law was at McMurray and Company in Winnipeg, where he met Vera Kunynsky, whom he married in 1943.

Because of the war raging in Europe, Bruce started training for the air force, and got his wings in 1943. During his military training, Bruce earned the Bud Skarrat memorial watch award for his high marks. Because he had to wear glasses, Bruce became a navigator rather than a pilot.

Along with his new wife, Vera, he was posted to Comox, B.C., where he was a pilot officer instructor and navigator until the end of the war.

Back to law, he then joined Heap, Arsenych and Murchison, where he worked for about five years. Then he formed his own practice. After about ten years, he moved back to Portage la Prairie, working at Miller and Miller law firm.

Bruce then became a circuit judge, holding court in Treherne, Gladstone, Portage la Prairie, Morden and other towns.  He retired in 1994 at age 75.

Bruce spent his teen summers at the family cottage at Delta on Lake Manitoba and continued to return there every summer, first with his wife Vera and daughter Sharon, and later with his third wife, Lorraine.

He and Lorraine worked tirelessly together to make the cottage a welcome oasis for family and friends.

Bruce and Lorraine also shared a passion for baseball, and often travelled to Florida to attend spring training. His favourite team was the Oakland A's.

The last few years of his life, Bruce gave all of his energy to looking after Lorraine, and later visited her every day when she had to move to Tabor Home in Morden.

Besides his parents, Bruce was predeceased by daughter Lauren Patricia in 1948, second wife Mary (nee Shoomski, of Portage)  in 1978 and sister Mary Irene McDonald Piercey of Calgary in 1995.

When his second wife, Mary, died, Bruce had the Portage la Prairie United Church organ restored in her memory.

Bruce is survived by his wife of the last 25 years, Lorraine McDonald (nee Morden) (Allen), daughter Sharon McDonald and her husband David Connors of Stonewall, and their sons Michael Ross McDonald Connors of Montreal and Matthew Wallace McDonald Connors of Stonewall, as well as his first wife, Vera McDonald of Winnipeg.

On May 3, Bruce had a stroke and was found unconscious in his home by the home care nurse. He was taken to Boundary Trails hospital and then transferred to Health Sciences Centre A5 stepdown unit. He died on May 10 on the A5 ward.

Thank you to home care nurses, Morden ambulance, Boundary Trails Hospital, Dr. Duff, Winnipeg Health Sciences Centre A5 stepdown unit,

A5 ward, Dr. Krcek and all the staff and nurses who tended to dad.

Teresita and Cora were two of the nurses who happened to have been student nurses of Sharon's when she taught nursing 16 years ago. Thank you all so much.  Thanks also to neighbours Ken and Pat Gibson and friends Maryanne and Gordon Wolfe. We'd also like to thank Sarah Hofer and all of the folks at the Hutterite colony who gave dad lots of food, support and visits.

The funeral service will be at 1 p.m. Friday, May 13 at St. Paul's United Church, 353 Thornhill, Morden, Mb.  A private interment will follow at Hillside Cemetery in Portage la Prairie.

In lieu of flowers, donations to the Heart and Stroke Foundation would be greatly appreciated.

Wiebe Funeral Chapel, Morden in care of arrangements.

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