Francis “Grant” Lawrence

Francis "Grant" Lawrence

It is with great sadness that the family of Grant Lawrence announces his passing on September 27, 2018 at Hospice at the Views in Comox, B.C. where he was lovingly surrounded by his family.

Predeceased by his parents Lou & Ethel (nee Morgan) Lawrence of Weyburn, Saskatchewan, nephew Craig Lawrence of Calgary and his in laws Jack & Ainslie Langston of Victoria (formerly Comox ) whom he was very fond of. He is survived by his wife Kathie of 50 years, son John (Jo-Anne) Lawrence of Victoria, daughter Tracey (Kirk) Lawrence of Courtenay and grandchildren, Adam, Kate, Jack, Megan and Madi. Also, his brother Jim (Pat) Lawrence

of Calgary, brothers in law George (Mary) Ferguson of London, England, John Langston of Victoria, sister in law Allison (Phillipe) Langston of Victoria and several nieces and nephews.

Grant was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba and raised in Weyburn, Saskatchewan. A watershed event of his youth was the first family visit to the West Coast in 1954, so impactful that Grant announced, “When I grow up, this is where I’ll live!”. A lifelong love of music led to him playing alto saxophone in the Weyburn Marching Band and the Legionnaires Dance Combo. Bitten by the radio bug while in high school, upon graduation in 1961 Grant was sent by the local radio station to establish a sister station in Estevan, Saskatchewan.

While there, he sent out audition tapes to the West Coast which resulted in a job offer in Courtenay. In 1962 Grant departed for the Promised Land! Later, after additional time “on-air” in Campbell River, he began his career in the newspaper business at the Campbell River Courier in advertising sales. While in Campbell River he met his wife & they were married at the Base Chapel in Comox in 1968. His career took him to the Lower Mainland for 5 years. Missing the Island and wanting to raise their children there, they moved to Parksville in 1976 and in in 1979 was offered a position with the Comox Valley Free Press ( The Green Sheet) and came “home” to Courtenay! He joined the Comox Valley Record in 1993 as Sales Manager and 2 years later became its publisher, a position he held for the balance of his career, retiring in 2008. In 2014 his many newspaper achievements culminated in receiving the prestigious Eric Dunning Award for Dedication & Service to the Community Newspaper Industry. An award he felt very honoured to receive.

An active community worker and volunteer, Grant was a member of the Kinsmen Club, K 40 Club, Courtenay Rotary and served several terms as President of the Comox Valley Crime Stoppers.

He was a gentle man and a Gentleman. Always the “voice of reason” in our family. Although, there were times we did try his patience! He deeply loved his family and was very proud of his children. Over the years we enjoyed many get together with friends and family at our home, trips to Weyburn and Calgary, several cruises and more recently trips to England. He was very touched on the last trip to England when his newly found Lawrence cousins made arrangements for him to actually visit the still occupied home in Forthampton, Gloucestershire where his grandfather was born in 1889. He always said it was something he thought he would never see.

We would like to thank Dr. Crowe and Dr. McLeod for their amazing care and compassion, the VIHA nurses, (especially Christine) and all the staff at Hospice at the Views who took such wonderful care of him over the last two months of his life. Also, his co-workers and friends for the visits and a very special thanks to his friend Al McGee who was always there for him. After a life well-lived, Grant will be lovingly remembered by those touched by his presence.

A Celebration of Life will be announced at a later date.

I’ll Be Seeing You (Billie Holiday circa 1944)

I’ll be seeing you

in all the old familiar places

That this heart of mine embraces

All day through

I’ll be seeing you

in every lovely summer’s day

in everything that’s light and gay

I’ll always think of you that way

I’ll find you in the morning sun

And when the night is new

I’ll be looking at the moon

But I’ll be seeing you

Comox Valley Record

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