David Anthony Samolesky
With his loving family at his side, David Anthony Samolesky passed away at his home in Portage la Prairie, MB on Tuesday, May 30, 2017.
Born March 11, 1948 in The Pas, MB, Dave grew up in Flin Flon, moving to Portage la Prairie when he was sixteen. He was predeceased by his parents Tony and Vicki (nee Hutney). Left to cherish his memory are his wife of 47 years, Lorraine Samolesky (nee Rey); his children Jordan (Nadine), Jana (Aaron), and Jeremy (Alina); his grandsons, Oliver and Harlen; his sister Diane; his sisters-in-law Dosia Cannon and Claudette Pagé; his extended family; many friends, former colleagues, and fellow parishioners.
Dave attended Arthur Meighen High School, completed his B.A. in Psychology at the University of Winnipeg, followed by his M.A. in Psychology at the University of Manitoba. In the ‘70s he worked at the Manitoba Developmental Center, and in the ‘80s began working for the Province of Manitoba as a Behavioural Psychologist in the region of Portage la Prairie for over thirty-five years until his retirement in 2005.
He quickly established himself as a widely respected clinician working with people with developmental disabilities. His passion and enthusiasm for his work led him to pursue involvement in related areas such as Non-Violent Crisis Intervention and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder training, and work with Emergency Social Services.
Dave truly loved being active in the local community. He was involved with the Kinsmen club, and did volunteer work with Habitat For Humanity, Manitoba Coalition for International Cooperation, and the Portage Soup Kitchen. He was very active with St John’s/Good Shepherd Church in a variety of roles including RCIA and the Parish Council. He enjoyed his work with Welcome Wagon, S.A.M., and Elections Canada.
He was an active listener, and an even more active story-teller. He loved to travel, completing the Camino de Santiago in 2008. He read voraciously. He ate, drank, and socialized voraciously. He played many practical jokes, some with incredible repetition, but each time like it was the first time. He accepted people for who they were. He loved life and embraced its challenges with vigour and positivity. His family and friends loved and respected him. He cherished his role as “Papa Sam” and always looked forward to spending time with his grandchildren. He was so grateful for the quality of medical care he received and never missed a chance to say thank you. He gifted those around him with a tremendously positive outlook. Dave and his wife Lorraine somehow kept laughing all the way till the end. Through the many lives he touched, his spirit will live on.
Prayers will be held at Good Shepherd Roman Catholic Church on Sunday, June 4, 2017 at 7:00 pm. Funeral Mass will take place at Good Shepherd Catholic Church,1125 Saskatchewan Ave E, Portage la Prairie on Monday, June 5, 2017 at 2:00 pm led by Father Gerald Langevin.
As expressions of sympathy, if friends so wish, donations may be made in Dave’s memory to Prairie Welcome House, 114 Countess Ave. Portage La Prairie, MB R1N 0T2, First Presbyterian Soup Kitchen, 17 Royal Road S. Portage la Prairie MB R1N 1T8 or Central Plains Cancer Services, 318 Saskatchewan Ave. E., Portage la Prairie, MB R1N 0K8.
A tree will be planted in memory and cared for by McKenzies Portage Funeral Chapel.