Spackman, Grant Lawrence August 3, 1921 – December 5, 2014
Grant Spackman passed away on Friday, December 5, 2014 at the age of 93 years. He will be lovingly remembered by his wife of 65 years Beth; children Larry (Flora) Spackman of Calgary, AB, Kathy (Wendell) Cahoon of Sandy, UT, David (Camilla) Spackman of Calgary, AB, Bill (Colette) Spackman of Calgary, AB, Hugh (Whitney) Spackman of Santa Barbara, CA, Carl (Tracy) Spackman of Phoenix, AZ and Michael (Jennifer) Spackman of Boise, ID; grandchildren Beth (Stuart) Thompson, Mary Anne (Nelson) Kroeker, Sara (Dustin) Johnson, Holly (David) Melchin, Grant L. Spackman III, Jay (Cindy) Cahoon, Kay (Kris) Whitehead, Tom (Crystal) Cahoon, Christy (Allen) Hadley, Sally (Daniel) O’Keef, Eddie (Karlie) Cahoon, Eldon (Abbey) Spackman, Sarah (Brad) Leishman, Steven (Chelsea) Spackman, Jeffrey Spackman, Benjamin (Jessica) Spackman, Stephanie (Matt) Rempel, Mark (Jennifer) Spackman, Scott (Rachelle) Spackman, Renee (Jake) Sherlock, Michael Spackman, Rachel Spackman, Sam Spackman, Zack Spackman, Ginger Spackman, Christian Spackman, Chloe Spackman, Ian Spackman, Nathan Spackman, Daniel Spackman, Tanner Spackman, Jacob Spackman, Bethany Spackman, Lily Spackman.; 48 great-grandchildren (we would love to list all their names because he loved each and every one of his great-grandchildren, but it will take up too much room) with three more great-grandchildren on the way; sisters Nora Berezay and Louise (Terry) Fulsom; and many more family and friends. He was predeceased by his son Thomas Spackman, grandson Michael Spackman, great-granddaughter Kaitlyn Leishman, his parents Elmer and Fern Spackman, and siblings Ella Schaufert, Robert Spackman, Ronald Spackman, and Dorothy Spackman. Grant Lawrence Spackman was born in Stirling, Alberta on 3 August 1921 to Elmer Louis Spackman and Celia Fern Workman and raised in Raymond, Alberta. As a young man, he received the King Scout Award in Scouting. He was active in Boy Scouts of Canada as a Scout leader for many years. After high school, Grant received a scholarship to Olds College for winning an art competition. He attended Olds College, studying agriculture, where he was instrumental in forming the first branch of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Olds. However, as he considered a career, he decided that his allergies would make life on the farm difficult, so he made the decision to further his education at university and became an engineer. He wore his Professonal Engineering ring for the remainder of his life. His studies were interrupted by World War II. Grant enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force and trained as a pilot and in other capacities in the Air Force. In his role as navigator/bomber, he flew many missions over Europe. He received the Distinguished Flying Cross from King George VI in June 1944 for his valiant and heroic actions in crawling out onto the wing of the aircraft to extinguish a fire on the wing as it flew back to England from a mission over Europe. Grant later recalled, “As King George pinned the DFC (Distinguished Flying Cross) on me, I said, ‘Thank you, Your Majesty. I accept this on behalf of my whole crew.’ Then the king said quietly as he clasped my hand and looked into my eyes, ‘But you were the man on the wing.'” After the war, he attended the University of Alberta in Edmonton where he met and married the love of his life, Beth Tanner, and graduated with a degree in engineering. They started their family in Edmonton before his career in the oil and gas industry moved the family to Estevan, Saskatchewan and then to Regina, Saskatchewan. In 1971, they moved to Calgary which has been their home ever since. Grant married E. Beth Tanner in the Cardston Alberta Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on 28 July 1949. They were delighted to celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary this year. Grant and Beth were blessed with eight delightful, smart and opinionated children. Grant often told anyone who would listen that he had seven sons and every son had a sister. He would then explain that he had seven sons and one daughter, (each son had the same sister.) Their home was filled with love, laughter and prayer, hard work, diligence and a deep love of the Lord. They lived on an acreage south of Calgary for 40 years, raising cows, chickens, pigs and other critters, all while pursuing his engineering career in Calgary and serving in many church capacities. When questioned about the benefit of raising animals on his acreage, Grant said his priority was not raising the animals, he was raising boys – and one delightful girl – and teaching them how to work. One of the most challenging times in their life came with the death of their sweet son, Tommy, who passed away from leukemia shortly before the age of eight. Grant often mentioned how grateful he is for the knowledge that families can be together forever and that they will be reunited again. Grant was a hard worker in everything he did. This was evident in both his career and his service in the church. In addition to serving in many leadership callings throughout his life, he and his beloved companion, Beth, served four church missions together: New Zealand Christchurch Mission as mission president (1983-1986), Iceland as counsellor to the Denmark Copenhagen mission president (1992-1993), Toronto Temple (1996-1997), and Phoenix, Arizona in the Mesa temple visitor center (2001-2002.) A viewing will be held for Grant at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints – 24 Street Chapel (10923 – 24 Street SW, Calgary) on Friday, December 12, 2014 from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. A Funeral Service will then be held at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints – Foothills Stake Centre (30 Everstone Boulevard SW, Calgary) on Saturday, December 13, 2014 at 10:00 am with a viewing before the funeral at 9:00. Interment will follow at Mountain View Memorial Gardens.