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Ken Lanceley

October 18, 1951 – December 28, 2016

With heavy hearts we announce the passing of Kenneth Blaine Lanceley on December 28, 2016 in Winnipeg.


Ken was born October 18, 1951 in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan. He was predeceased by grandparents Joe and Mary Vermette, Eli Wuttunee and Mary Johnston, parents Lester Vermette and Hilda Lanceley Brown, stepfathers Albert Lanceley and Ernie Brown and sister-in-law, Aurie Lanceley. Ken is survived by his wife, Ann, son Joseph, daughter Sarah (Dave) and three granddaughters Rowan, Mya and Lilyana.  Ken was the oldest of ten and leaves to mourn him six sisters: Peggy Vermette, Darlene Lanceley (Gary), Sherry Saevil (Glen), Sandra Lanceley (Rob), Patsy Littlepine (Brian) and Donna Brown; three brothers: Earl Lanceley, Wayne Brown and Robert Brown (Beatka); his father and mother-in-law Harold and Winnie Baird and sisters-in-law Allison Gordon (Peter) and Susan Baird (Doug) as well as numerous nieces and nephews, most of whom knew and loved him.


Ken was born a treaty Indian and member of Mistawasis Band. He was baptized in the Roman Catholic Church and after the early death of his father, Lester he was raised in part and sustained by the love of his Vermette grandparents. He was enfranchised upon his adoption by Albert Lanceley in 1963 and his surname changed from Johnston to Lanceley; his religion changed to Protestant.  After the death of his stepfather, Ken became a ward of the government.  He was eventually relocated to Regina, Saskatchewan where he attended and graduated from Sheldon Williams High School. 


Ken considered himself lucky to have been guided by group home parents: Fred and Bev McBeth. Ken managed to transcend the stereotypes and prejudices of the time but he would spend his whole life reconnecting with the family he lost in his youth. Ken met his wife-to-be, Ann Baird, in Ottawa, Ontario and three years later, they moved to Prince Albert, Saskatchewan to begin their life together.  They married in 1976 in Rouleau, Saskatchewan. Ken had already begun to work in construction as a carpenter.  He entered his apprenticeship the same year his son Joseph was born (1977) and received his ticket as an Interprovincial Red Seal Carpenter the year of his daughter Sarah's birth (1980).  His family was the central love of his life and his trade of carpentry was a constant. 


Ken was a man who loved to work with wood.  Although most of his working years were spent in Brandon, Manitoba he plied his trade in four provinces as a contractor, teacher, apprenticeship counsellor and building inspector.  While his own children were in high school, Ken returned to Brandon University and graduated in 1997 with his Bachelor of General Studies.  He followed that degree with a two-year Civil Service Aboriginal Development Program. New challenges as a Building and Fire inspector required more study in building codes and fire safety. In 2006, Ken took early retirement from his government job to travel and take on short term contracts as a carpentry instructor and building inspector. In his spare time he restored a one-hundred-year old house in Liberty,Saskatchewan with his wife Ann and in June of 2016 he completed construction of their retirement home at Pelican Lake, Manitoba on the site of their family cottage. 


Ken worked hard for all of his achievements and yet he never failed to enjoy life in the moment.  He liked to drink beer and eat bacon. He enjoyed playing and watching basketball and passed that enthusiasm on to his children.  He had a large laugh and a larger heart.  His home was open to anyone who needed a place to stay.  He loved to shop, he cooked breakfast for his wife and children and read his daily newspaper.  He loved music and played guitar.  He took good care of his vehicles and enjoyed long road trips to Mexico and the United States. In 2006 he drove 15,000 kilometres from Brandon, Manitoba to Quetzaltenango, Guatemala and back.Ken was an even-tempered, easy going, kind, compassionate and thoughtful man.  He loved children and they loved him back.  He spoke with directness and eloquence.  People were proud to call him a friend as evidenced by the outpouring of support and love he received during his battle with cancer. 


Cremation has taken place an a memorial service will be held during the summer of 2017 and will be announced at a later date.

Our family will be forever grateful for the care and attention Ken received from volunteers, staff, nurses, doctors, paramedics: Palliative Care, Cancer Care Manitoba, Health Sciences Centre and St. Boniface Hospital. 

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