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News > Passing of friends > News from Canada that Nicholas Gray (1965G) passed away

News from Canada that Nicholas Gray (1965G) passed away

An avid reader, cricket enthusiast, keen photographer and wonderful family man.

We only recently received this beautiful tribute from the family of Nicholas Gray (1965G) who sadly passed away on 15 April this year.

Nicholas Gray was born on July 27, 1947, and passed away peacefully at home in Winnipeg, Canada with his family by his side, on April 15, 2022, at 74 years of age. Nicholas endured a six-month battle with cancer with bravery and stoicism, as was his way. He fought valiantly until the end.

He will be lovingly remembered by his wife of 31 years, Debbie Mabin; and their children Sarah and Douglas. He will also be sadly missed by numerous friends and family members.

Nicholas was born in Paarl South Africa and spent his early years living on the wine and fruit farm Plaisir de Merle. The family remained at Plaisir de Merle until they sold the wine estate and moved to the farm Knorhoek, also near Cape Town.

Nicholas initially attended a local “farm school” where there were few school rooms and few teachers. He then attended Bishops Diocesan College from 1958 to 1965, including a post Matriculation year. He then attended the University of Cape Town from 1966 to 1971 and attained a Batcheler of Science, majoring in mathematics. He worked at Old Mutual 1969 to 1971 after which he returned to full time studies, then worked from 1972 to 1979 at Norwich Union followed by Metropolitan Life from 1979 to 1993. He was a part time actuarial student during these periods of work.

Volunteering was an important part of Nicholas’ life. He was a member of Table Bay Rotors from 1972 to 1979, serving terms as treasurer and president. The Rotors club sadly disbanded, but Nicholas made lifelong friends from his time there. While in Canada, Nicholas joined the Lions Club both in Thompson and The Pas. He was president of the Lions Club in The Pas 1998 and 1999. Following this, Nicholas volunteered for The Pas Skating Club for several years and was treasurer for this club for some time. He then was heavily involved in volunteering for The Pas Music and Fine Arts Festival from 2010 to 2018.

Nicholas had wide interests including music, wine tasting, reading, travel, theater, ballet, and photography. Nicholas attended “residential” on-site wine tasting courses in Germany and France from 1975 onwards. Nicholas played squash for sport and had a keen interest in cricket, being a member of the Western Province Cricket Club in Cape Town. His family remember him attending cricket matches with a comfortable cushion in one hand and a Time magazine in the other hand. Indeed, Nicholas never went anywhere without something to read, although more recently, Time had been replaced with National Geographic or a computer magazine.

Nicholas and Debbie were married in Cape Town in 1991 and two years later emigrated to Canada, initially living in Thompson, Manitoba. After a few years, Nicholas and Debbie moved to The Pas, Manitoba, where they welcomed both their children into their lives. Nicholas and Debbie moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba in 2018.

Thank you to the family for sending this to us.  Nicholas clearly lived well and was loved well.

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