With heavy hearts and tears in our eyes we share that Lewis (Lew) Charles Taylor died as the sun set on June 2, 2020 at the age of 69.
Lew was many things to many people including but not limited to being a loving husband, devoted father, doting grandfather, supportive friend, dedicated teacher, motivating coach and an amateur golfer who was VERY committed to his practice.
He successfully holds the title of being the last baby born at the old Hamiota Hospital (circa July 28, 1950). After achieving that title, surprisingly it wasn’t all downhill from there. Raised in Rivers, his first job was at the pool hall, and if he wasn’t playing pool he was doing odd jobs around town, playing all the sports and doing school work on occasion.
He graduated from the University of North Dakota in 1971 with a Bachelors of Science in Physical Education. Hearing rave reviews of the Swan River Valley from fellow university classmates he accepted a position with the Swan Valley School Division. Over the next thirty-three and a half years Lew became a highly respected teacher and administrator in the Division. He cultivated longstanding relationships with students and staff as well as created memories and opportunities for all who walked through the doors of Ecole Swan River South School. Upon retirement, his work didn’t stop as he volunteered with the SV Trails Committee as he was an avid x-country skier, was a board member for Sport Manitoba, active member in organizing the 55+ Manitoba Games in Swan River, travelled the NWT to help with the 2006 Canadian Census in addition to being a member on many other committees. Lew was a fierce advocate for youth sports and a role model on how to give back to your community.
One fateful day in Swan River he met Diana (Dixon). They were married in 1975. The next forty-five years of marriage included welcoming their two daughters and three grandchildren, winter weekends skiing at ThunderHill, spring breaks in the mountains, summers at Madge Lake, many family road trips and quading to enjoy the scenic gems of the valley. Lew lived for his golf trips with Diana and friends as well as marathon golf trips with his buddies. He often reflected fondly on trips he took to Europe, Cuba, Arizona and PEI.
Lew did not lose his battle with glioblastoma (brain cancer). Technically according to the playbook - the cancer left at the same time he did so it’s a tie.
His mom and dad as well as other extended family members have passed before him. Honouring his legacy and holding tight to memories will be his wife Diana; daughters Janelle Yakimishen (Ryan) and Pam O’Hara (Aaron); grandchildren Emily, Burke and Kate; brother Wilf (Jean); mother in law Lila Dixon; as well as brother and sister in laws, nieces, nephews and many, many friends.
Our family would like to extend a huge thank you to all the people involved in Lew’s care - Dr. Burnside and team at Swan River Primary Care Clinic, Jeffrey and team at Swan Valley Pharmacy, PMH Palliative and Home Care staff, Cancer Care Manitoba and our family and friends. We are and continue to be overwhelmed with your generosity and kindness.
In honouring Lew’s wishes, a private burial service was held. The Lew Taylor Memorial Fund has been established with the Swan Valley Community Foundation. Donations made in his honour will be directed towards youth sports within the Valley as well as the Swan River Golf Course. Contributions can be sent to Community Foundation of Swan Valley, Box 1509, Swan River, Manitoba R0L1Z0.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Lewis Charles Taylor, please visit our floral store.
Community Foundation of Swan Valley
Box 1509, Swan River MB R0L 1Z0