John “Leo” Gratton passed away on March 1st, 2006 in Chilliwack. He was born on April 15, 1918. Leo was the firstborn to Alma and Mose Gratton of Chelmsford, Ontario.
Leo is survived by his wife of 59 years Judy Gratton, his daughters; Anita Colling (Glen) and Colleen Sanderson, his grandchildren Michael Sanderson and Jonita Colling-Holland (Andrew), his great grandson Graeme “Cracker” Holland and numerous nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his parents, his sister Mariette Roy (Alf) and brother “Eddie” (June) Gratton.
Leo was a member of the 1st Division of the Canadian Army from Christmas 1939 to October 1945. He spent all 6 Â½ years serving overseas. During his service as an officer in the Medical Corp., he met nursing sister Julia Ann Hovorka. Judy and Leo were married in September of 1946. They later had two daughters and then two grandchildren. Leo was a miner in both Flin Flon, Manitoba and Miami, Arizona. In 1957 Judy and Leo established the Regina Haven Nursing Home in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He was the business administrator of the home until his retirement in 1968.
Throughout his life, Leo was an active member of the Royal Canadian Legion and received his 50 year pin. He became a member of the Knights of Columbus in 1951 in Flin Flon, Manitoba and continued service in Winnipeg and Chilliwack. Leo was also an active member of the Lion’s Club in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
First and foremost, Leo was a family man, a man of tremendous emotional depth, integrity and honesty. His 59 year marriage was a lifelong love affair, an example for his children and grandchildren. He will be sorely missed.