BRUCE GARNET WATSON
June 11, 1945 – February 15, 2023
Peacefully, on Wednesday February 15th 2023, surrounded by his loved ones, Bruce Garnet Watson at the age of 77, went to be with his Lord Jesus Christ after a brief but courageous battle with cancer.
He will be greatly missed by his wife of 50 years, Wendy, his children Erin and Courtney (Tim) and grandchildren, Selah and Lauren Mohr and Caedmon, Liam, Mackenna and Braelynn Horch. He is also survived by his brother Bob (Shirley) Watson and sister Ruth Harbard as well as many cousins, nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his parents Frank and Jean Watson.
Bruce was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba on June 11, 1945 and was raised in the neighbourhood of Fort Rouge. He would often say that he grew up quite privileged. Not because of the things he had but because of the era he was living in. He loved to tell his family stories of his childhood adventures, leaving us feeling envious of what he called a much simpler time. He would take off on his bike first thing in the morning with his friends, ride to Assiniboine Park and be gone until dinner. He also enjoyed taking the train with his family to Grand Beach where they would spend time with their relatives in the summer.
Bruce attended Lord Roberts School and then moved on to Churchill High for grades 8-12 where he graduated in 1963. He has fond memories of those school years, making some wonderful friendships that he still had to this day.
Following graduation Bruce enrolled in the two-year electronic engineering program at the Manitoba Institute of Technology (Red River College). His employment included working in the engineering department at MTS and subsequently in the special circuits department with Bell Telephone in Toronto. While he enjoyed his work, a change in his career path brought him back to Winnipeg where he joined Price Waterhouse as a Chartered Accountant student. He graduated in 1972 as a Chartered Professional Accountant. For most of his career he worked as an internal auditor and retired from Manitoba Hydro in 2007.
Family has always played an important role in Bruce’s life. He and Wendy were married in Winnipeg in April of 1972. They welcomed their first daughter Erin in August 1975 and then four years later Courtney was born in October 1979. His young family became his focus. He did not pursue music as a boy but made sure to give his daughters those opportunities and was so proud to hear them play and perform. He made every effort to be at each musical or sporting event showing his love and support and ensuring his girls knew that they mattered.
He was a very welcoming and caring father-in-law and was thrilled to no longer be the lone male of the family. This meant he wasn’t outnumbered anymore. In 2004 Bruce and Wendy had the pleasure of becoming grandparents. They were blessed with the gift of six grandchildren. Just as he did with his own children, Bruce attended as many of his grandchildren’s events as he could, taking his role as “Papa” very seriously. He looked forward to every visit and enjoyed his conversations with each one and would’ve loved to have been around longer to support and cheer them on in their future endeavors.
Throughout the years, Bruce enjoyed playing sports including hockey, soccer, volleyball and baseball. In the early 1990’s he became an assistant coach for a soccer team at Gateway Community Club that went on to win the City Championships two years in a row. It was extra special because his daughter Courtney played on the team. They proudly wore their team jackets for several years until they outgrew them.
Bruce enjoyed travelling and visited Mexico, Scotland, England and France in his 20’s. He was a student of history and spent hours visiting many of the historical sites in those countries. His enjoyment for travelling increased as he and his family went on numerous holidays and trips across the U.S.A and Canada visiting family and friends. Once retired, Bruce and Wendy returned to Britain to visit Bruce’s sister Ruth and her family. They also enjoyed month-long stays in Tucson, Arizona and Austin, Texas while spending time with friends.
Bruce was an all-round Mr. Fix-It. Whenever something needed repairs, he was often the first one his family and friends would contact. If he didn’t know exactly how to fix it, he would take the time to research how to fix it or find out which expert to call to ensure it was done properly. He was an avid reader, loved history and had knowledge of many topics which helped to guide and teach his children and grandchildren. He also enjoyed playing games. He spent many hours playing dominoes, teaching the grandkids chess and cribbage and working on many puzzles with Wendy. He also had a real love of classical music. He and Wendy enjoyed attending performances by the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra for many years with friends.
Bruce was raised in a family who believed in God and for whom church life had a significant impact. His faith in Jesus was strong and his belief system was well-grounded. He had a real love for Jesus and his heart was to see his family and friends find that same relationship with Jesus. He served in numerous capacities within the church and was grateful for every opportunity. He was a part of kid’s clubs, youth groups, led Bible studies, and served on various boards. He and Wendy would often have people in their home for Bible studies, prayer groups, mentorship and potlucks.
Bruce’s cancer caught us all off guard and although the battle was brief, we are so thankful for all who supported him in the fight. Many thanks go to the staff in the Emergency and Internal Medicine Ward 5E at St. Boniface Hospital. The doctors, nurses and support staff were outstanding during his 20 days there. We would also like to extend a special thanks to Dr. Sen, Dr. Silver and Dr. Kisil who have cared for Bruce for many years. You went above and beyond and we appreciate you.
A Celebration of Life service will be held on Wednesday March 8th, 2023 at 11:00 am at Rowandale Baptist Church, 162 Rowandale Avenue in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
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