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Born: Jun 29, 1919

Date of Passing: Jun 19, 2012

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ALBERT EDWARD (BERT) BLAKE June 29, 1919 - June 19, 2012 EILEEN GRACE BLAKE (nee MURRAY) May 6, 1928 - July 3, 2012 They were a formidable pair. Both were horse people par excellence, he a successful trainer for over 50 years at Assiniboia Downs and she a skilled equestrian in her youth - winner of the Powder Puff Derby at Assiniboia Downs in 1960 - and later a buyer of horses for the track. They were partners in profession, and in love. Married for 55 years, so close to one another in life, it seems somehow fitting that they died a mere two weeks apart from one another. They were a beloved pair. Bert stormed Juno Beach on D-Day, and was personally decorated by King George Vl. He could appear gruff but on the inside was a softy. Eileen was poised and elegant, with impeccable posture---a leftover, no doubt, from her equestrian days. They each lived full, rich lives, and they did what they loved. Eileen and Bert will be missed dearly by their family and friends. Predeceased by their parents Albert Edward and Florence Blake and Roy and Lois Murray. Also predeceased by Eileen's brother Jack in 1947, and brother-in-law Brant Ackroyd in 1971. Celebrating their life are Eileen's sister Margaret Ackroyd of Brandon, MB, brother Roy (Lorri) Murray of Vernon, B.C., nieces and nephews Ellen (John) Kachan of Calgary, AB, Jack (Mo) Ackroyd of Vernon, B.C., Greg (Sheri) Ackroyd of St. Albert, AB, Susan Slawson of Burlington, ON, Brian (Jackie) Ackroyd of Winnipeg, MB, Michele Murray (Daniel Miller) of Sherbrooke, QC, Roslyn Murray of Vancouver, B.C. Also several great and great-great-nieces and nephews. The family extend a heartfelt thank you to the staff at Victoria General Hospital, Winnipeg, for their kind and compassionate care of Bert and Eileen. Also special thanks to Barry Boychuk and Mary Dagg for their help and kindness to Bert and Eileen. Flowers graciously declined. As per Bert and Eileen's request, a private family graveside service will be held in Brandon. Arrangements are in care of Brockie Donovan Funeral Cremation Services, Brandon, (204) 727 0694. Messages of condolence may be placed at

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Jul 14, 2012

Condolences & Memories (3 entries)

  • We had not realised, in our earlier Tribute, that Eileen had also passed away so soon after Bert's passing. The most remembered of memories of Eileen was her sense of fun and her dignity. When Bert and Eileen visited us in England, some years ago, we surprised Eileen by taking her to see the Queen Mother who was visiting Cheltenham. Eileen was a staunch Monachist, as was her mother, Lois. Eileen could not believe how close she could get to the Queen Mother. We got so much fun and pleasure at seeing Eileen so excited. Bless them both. - Posted by: Chris and Val Smith () on: Jul 17, 2012

  • We have many happy memories of times spent with Bert and Eileen, in Kentucky, England and when we visited in Winnipeg. Bert and Eileen took us to the Downs, a visit which we also enjoyed very much. Bert was a great cook, in addition to his unrivalled knowledge of horse flesh. He was very proud of his 'Yorkshire Pudding' and it was very good. Bert was a unigue character and so easy to get along with - we shall miss him. - Posted by: Chris and Val Smith (England) (Friends) on: Jul 17, 2012

  • To Albert, we would like to thank you for your service. To live such a fulfilled life with the one you love is such a blessing. May God Bless you Both, Amen John, Celina, Peyton and Travis Medeiros - Posted by: John and Celina Medeiros (none) on: Jul 16, 2012

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