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Claire Macdonald

February 9, 1925 - August 7, 2017

Claire Margaret Macdonald

We sadly announce that Claire passed away peacefully at the Victoria Hospital on August 7, 2017 at the age of 92.  She will be remembered as a loving Mom, Grandma, Aunt, and dear friend to many. She is survived by her daughter Joan (Larry); son Bill; granddaughters Denise (Mike) and Kyla; sisters-in-laws Cathy, Joan, Skip and Marie, and many nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her husband Jim (James Hugh); her brothers Peter and Bill; sister-in-law Joan Allison; brothers-in-law Gerry and Bob, and niece Lisa.

Claire was born in Winnipeg on February 9, 1925 to David and Lena Allison. At age 17, David came to Canada alone from Scotland as a homesteader.  Her parents were both teachers and Claire had many great memories of the summer holidays she spent during her childhood in Killarney, where her Mother’s family was from.  Claire graduated from Gordon Bell and the University of Manitoba with Arts and Social Work degrees, and worked for several years at the Family Bureau.  She enjoyed being a social worker and joked that “she was paid to mind other people’s business”.

She married Jim in 1950 and together they had many happy years as a family in Fort Garry. The family enjoyed camping and later built a cottage in the late sixties.  Tragically, Claire was widowed at the age of 46, when Jim was lost in his small plane while on a business trip in northern Manitoba in December 1971, and was never found. She lived for double the years of her beloved husband Jim, and never remarried.

Claire was a strong-willed, courageous, and resilient woman. She was always a good listener and was accepting and interested in people.  She gave sage advice and support to many.  She loved to laugh and had a positive outlook on life. She was compassionate but feisty, never afraid to “tell it like it is”. She was a modern thinker who hated ageism, and was interested in social justice issues. She loved music, especially jazz, and attended countless recitals and music performances as a devoted fan of her granddaughters. She enjoyed travelling, reading the paper, following the news, and until recently, doing her own income taxes without a computer! Claire loved playing bridge with CHER (Claire, Helga, Evelyn and Ruth). The friends wore their CHER shirts at their Saturday afternoon games. She spent many happy summers at the family cottage at Kendall Inlet in Lake of the Woods.

Claire was a wonderful Mom, tremendously supportive to Joan and Bill and her grandkids. She taught them that “it’s not what happens to you but how you respond to it”.  She believed strongly in unconditional love, forgiveness, and kindness as the highest form of wisdom.

The last two years were a challenge for Claire, as she fought back from two strokes, which caused her to lose her independence.   Even through all her health issues, she never lost her sense of humour.


We are grateful for the care she received from the compassionate staff at The Convalescent Home, where she lived for the past year.


Claire was much loved and will be deeply missed, but we are thankful for her long full life and glad that she is at peace.


A celebration of Claire’s life will be held on Friday, August 18, 2017 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the First Unitarian Universalist Church, 603 Wellington Crescent at Academy Road.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to The Convalescent Home of Winnipeg, 276 Hugo St. N. Winnipeg, MB. R3M 2N6.

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