Ed Connery passed away after a brief illness on Friday, June 14th, 2019 at St Boniface Hospital at the age of 85 years.
He was predeceased by his wife Beverley, sons Doug and Jeff, daughter Jackie and sister Eileen. He will be lovingly remembered by his son Tim; brother-in-law Phil Sager; son-in-law Ron; daughters-in-law Paulette and Beth; grandchildren Jarrett, Erin (Gil), Sheri (Dusty), Scott, Sam (Kyle) and Chris (Lisa) and their families; a large extended family and many friends.
Ed's passions in life were his family and friends, farming and his community.
Ed was born in St Vital on July 13, 1933 and he grew up in St Vital working with his parents in their bedding plant business. This had him selling plants in front of the old city hall and in the Polo Park parking lot. The operation eventually evolved into a market gardening stand on Christie Road in St Vital.
Ed met Bev at a church social and they married in 1953, having 4 children: Doug in 1955, Jackie in 1956, Jeff in 1959 and Tim in 1960. Over the years they developed many lifelong friendships within the community at large and the farming community.
Seeking better soil for root crops in the early 60s, Ed commuted from St Vital to Portage la Prairie in his panel van, working the fields and sometimes using the van as his sleeping accommodations. The family made the move to Portage in 1964 and spent the summer camping at the warehouse while their house was being built in Koko Platz.
Ed and Bev traveled much of the world, both for pleasure and to learn about new and innovative growing and storage techniques for the farm. Cruises, conferences, meetings, tours, and driving trips were all enjoyed.
He was very active in the community and many groups benefited from his efforts. Rotary's first vegetable sale was organized by Ed and he was instrumental in the Republic of Manitobah Park project. He was active for a number of years in the Habitat for Humanity builds. He was a volunteer for Central Plains Cancer Care Services. He had a term on the board of the Portage Golf Club and enjoyed many hours there with his friends over the years. Many agriculture organizations were supported and had him as a board member over the years including the Manitoba Vegetable Growers Marketing Board, Vegetable Growers Association of Manitoba and the Canadian Horticultural Council. Close to home, he was a part of the first Koko Platz Community Club on Laverendrye Crescent and helped with the move to the current location on Meighen Ave.
In 1986, Ed became the MLA for Portage la Prairie and was an active and assertive representative for the riding until he resigned in 1992. He held various cabinet positions from 1988 – 1991.
Whether on a tractor, reffing a hockey game, golfing or just driving around town and country, there was always a cigar in hand. If you couldn't see him, you could hear his laughter or smell the cigar.
Celebration of Ed's life will be held at Trinity United Church, Portage la Prairie, on Wednesday, June 26th, 2019 at 2:00 pm, led by Rev Beth Kerr.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Central Plains Cancer Services, 318 Saskatchewan Ave E, Portage la Prairie, Mb R1N 0K8 or to PAWS, 121 12 St NE, Portage la Prairie, Mb R1N 4A2.
A tree will be planted in memory and cared for by McKenzies Portage Funeral Chapel. 204-857-4021 www.mckenziesportagefuneralchapel.com