It is with great sorrow the family of Jake DeGagne, of Red Deer, Alta., announces his sudden passing on Saturday, March 3, 2018, one day after attending his brother Raymond's funeral in Fort Frances, Ont., near where Jake was born and raised on the farm near Devlin, Ont.
A celebration of Jake's life will be held on Friday, March 16, 2018 at 1 p.m. at the Red Deer Legion (2810 Bremner Ave.)
He was born on March 29, 1947 to Ulysse and Emilia DeGagne, the seventh of their 12 children.
He worked hard all of his life, coming west to Alberta in 1967 to seek his fortune, making good use of his many mechanical and construction skills.
Jake and Betty Watson of Delburne were married on Sept. 27, 1968, enjoying nearly 50 years together.
Not long after they were married, they returned to Ontario, where Jake qualified as a certified millwright while working in a paper mill. After a decade there, they returned to live in the Delburne and Red Deer areas.
Jake used his millwright skills at Ipsco, as it was known then, until his retirement.
He enjoyed building or renovating multiple houses, both in central Alberta and in Arizona, too. Other retirement hobbies were fishing, playing horseshoes, and restoring and showing antique vehicles par excellence.
His favourite use of these antique vehicles was taking his grandchildren and Jadyn to the Dairy Queen. He thoroughly enjoyed his family and friends.
In later years, he and Betty wintered in Arizona with Jake's brothers and cousins, among other travels.
Jake leaves behind his two sons, Kevin (special friend, Heather Wall) and Dion (special friend, Faye Van Humbeck); grandchildren, Christopher Robb, and Alexander and Melissa DeGagne; and favourite great-granddaughter, Jadyn.
He also is survived by his siblings, Roger (Doris), Vinton (Arlene), Paul (Jan), Ed (Karen), Marcel (Valdean), Louise (Roy) Cull, Emily (Bob) Bishop, and Yvonne Smelt; sister-in-law, Janis DeGagne-Nelson; and many nieces and nephews.
He was predeceased by his parents; brothers, Raymond and Leo; sister, Aurise and her husband, Armand Manaigre; sister-in-law, Susan; and brother-in-law, Richard Smelt.
In memoriam donations can be made to the local Heart and Stroke Foundation.
Messages of condolence may be offered for the family at www.myalternatives.ca