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MITCHELL – David Edward O.C., B.Sc., LL.D., P.ENG.

Dave Mitchell passed away in Calgary at age 83. He is survived by Doris, his loving wife of 60 years, daughter Donna, son David B [Karen], and grandchildren Derek, Jessica, Miranda, and Carolyn. Medical conditions, which he was always reluctant to discuss, were an extreme burden on him, particularly in the last three years of his life.

He was a caring family man, who deeply loved, enjoyed, and respected his family. Although city-raised, one special focus of his family life was Dave’s beloved ranch near Priddis, which he created and enjoyed with his family for more than 40 years. He loved the nature, wildlife, and trees along Fish Creek and in the nearby hills. Family activities also included journeys into the North, the Arctic Islands, Ottawa and elsewhere, to see Canada. He was a very proud Canadian.

A respected businessman, Dave was CEO for 29 years of two successful corporations; Alberta Energy, which he started with a staff of four, and Great Plains Development. Both were operated with high integrity and great social and environmental awareness. He was particularly pleased that Alberta Energy never laid off employees during some very difficult times.

Dave was the 35th Governor of the Hudson’s Bay Company; a director of several corporations including, Scotiabank, Air Canada, Continental Airlines, Chieftain International, Inc., LaFarge Corporation and Noranda Inc.; Chapter Chairman of the Young Presidents’ Organization; President of the Independent Petroleum Association [now CAPP], and President of the Oilfield Technical Society.

He enjoyed creating and developing new ideas and organizations such as Alberta Energy and the Manning Innovation Awards, and resurrecting the Calgary Fire Department’s Cappy Smart Band.

He founded and was President for 26 years of the Manning Innovation Awards which recognizes and encourages outstanding Canadian adult and high school innovators. This national endeavour has volunteers from coast to coast who donate their time and talents to recognize outstanding Canadians. To date, it has granted over $4 million in Awards.

Dave was an enthusiastic participant and supporter of many voluntary local and national endeavours and has received many accolades for his community activities. He was a member of the Senate and Vice Chairman of the Board of Governors at the University of Calgary; Chairman of the Calgary Police Commission for two terms; an active Honorary Chairman of the World Police and Fire Games; Honorary Calgary Fire Chief in recognition of his many activities for the Firefighters, and General Campaign Chairman of the Calgary United Way.

His awards included appointment as an Officer of the Order of Canada, an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Calgary, and a Canadian Council Professional Engineers Award for outstanding community service. He was an inaugural inductee to the Canadian Petroleum Hall of Fame and was also an inductee into the Junior Achievement Hall of Fame.

His first regular job was digging ditches in Turner Valley. He joined the R.C.A.F. underage; became a Professional Engineer and enjoyed a never-ending stream of life’s adventures. He remarked recently, “I have a wonderful family, have had fun at work and play, and am an extremely fortunate man.”

A Memorial Service will be held at First Alliance Church (12345 – 40th Street S.E.) on Thursday, August 19, 2010 at 1:00 p.m. Forward condolences through www.mcinnisandholloway.com. If friends so wish, in lieu of flowers, memorial tributes may be made to: Ernest C. Manning Awards Foundation, P.O. Box 2850, Calgary, AB T2P 2S5

In living memory of David Mitchell, a tree will be planted at Fish Creek Provincial Park by McINNIS & HOLLOWAY FUNERAL HOMES Park Memorial Chapel, 5008 ELBOW DRIVE S.W. Telephone: (403) 243-8200.

Offer Condolence for the family of MITCHELL – David Edward O.C., B.Sc., LL.D., P.ENG.

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Condolence Messages

  1. Brian Moghadam & Gayle Hunter :

    Dave & Karen, Mrs Mitchell and family,

    We’re so sad to hear of the passing of Mr Mitchell. What a wonderful Albertan and Canadian! We have many fond memories of him, his smile, times at the ranch and his uncommon decency and above all, humility in the face of so many successes.

    My parents viewed their friendship with your parents as one of their most special friendships. I can tell you that when your Dad visited my Dad in my Dad’s final days when Mr Mitchell was so ill himself, this is something my Mom will never forget.

    Our thoughts are with you and your family, we wish to express our deepest sympathy.

    Brian & Gayle

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  2. Joy Porter and John Porter :

    Doris, Donna, David and the family
    We are thinking about you all and sending lots of love. We have all had some wonderful times together over the years and have some fantastic memories but we will miss his wonderful presence……
    With love
    Joy and John

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  3. June Salamandick-Simons :

    As an employee of Chieftain and Alberta Energy, I was truly blessed to have had Dave Mitchell touch my life. He was a kind and caring man with time to smile, say hello and shake your hand. When he entered a room he made an immediate impression with his smiling face and his beautiful white hair. He was always a positive force. This world is a better place because of him. My deepest sympathies to Sandra and all of the family. My love and heart are with you. My arms around you.
    June Salamandick-Simons

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  4. Denis Painchaud :

    Mr. Mitchell was an outstanding man and a role model to all. His many contributions to his community provide a legacy that will better the lives of others for decades to come. As Chairman of the Calgary Police Commission, I often looked to Mr. Mitchell for advice and guidance which he always provided in his usual thoughtful and insightful manner. Calgary and I will miss Mr. Mitchell.

    Best wishes to the Mitchell family and deepest sympathies.

    Denis Painchaud

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  5. Andrew Icharia and family :

    Mrs. Mitchell, Dave & Karen, Dona and family,
    It’s been and honor and a privilege to get to know someone as special as Mr. Mitchell. He was truly special dad, mentor and friend everyone must have.
    The passing of Mr. Mitchell leaves a huge void in our lives and hearts of those who knew him.
    BUT..
    Those we love don’t go away,
    They walk beside us every day,
    Unseen, unheard, but always near,
    Still loved, still missed and very dear,
    Memories, no one can steal.

    Our best wishes, you are in our prayers.

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  6. David Ruptash :

    My sincerest condolences to the family of David Mitchell. I met and got to know David quite well when he served Calgary as the Chair of the Calgary Police Commission. I was a member of the Edmonton Police Commission trying to organize the Alberta Association of Police Governance. David’s support and encouragement with this endeavour shall be remembered always. So sorry to see him gone. Rest in Peace my friend. David Ruptash….

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  7. C. Alan Smith :

    Emily and I extend our most sincere sympathies on the passing of Dave. He was an outstanding contributor to life and made the world a better place for all of us. He will be missed by many.

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  8. I was the chair of the Edmonton police commission when Dave chaired the calgary commission. I always appreciated his insights, perspectives and analyses. He was the consummate gentleman.

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  9. I extend my profound sympathy to Doris and to other members of the Mitchell family at the sad loss of an exceptionally fine gentleman.

    As Corporate Secretary, it was my privilege to serve David in his capacity as Governor of Hudson’s Bay Company. Whilst taking his responsibilities very seriously, he never failed to make our meetings very friendly occasions. It was thanks to his initiative, that steps were taken to ensure that the three hundred year old Charter document of the Honourable Company has been preserved for future generations.

    I find it gratifying that he always treated me as a trusted friend rather than an employee. For the rest of my life I shall treasure my association with such an outstanding Canadian gentleman.

    May his soul rest in peace.

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  10. Doris and Family,

    My thoughts and prayers are with you. Dave was a wonderful friend to both Tom and myself. He will be remembered always.

    Ruth Guday

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  11. Dear Dave and Family

    It was my privilage to work for you and your Dad at the ranch in Priddis and I enjoyed the experiences very much. I remember fondly the warmth and generousity David showed towards me every time I would see him. His smile was infectious and warmed the room whenever he entered. I hope these fond memories and kind thoughts will help carry you through the grieving process.

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  12. Adolfo J. de Bold, OC, PhD, FRSC :

    Sincerest condolences to the family. As a principal winner of the Manning awards, I had the privilige to be notified personally of such honor by David himself. His caring manner and kind smile will forever be with us. We shall miss him.

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  13. Carollyne Rayner and George McKenzie :

    Mrs Mitchell, Dave & Karen, Dona & Family

    Dave was a special person who shared his knowledge, friendship and home, with us, and we will not forget him.

    May each special memory shine in your heart and bring you peace.

    Best Wishes and our Deepest Sympathies are with you all.

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  14. On behalf of my wife Pat and myself, I wish to express our most sincere condolences to the family of Dave Mitchell. I feel truly honored and privileged to have known Dave. He was without question one of the finest gentlemen you could ever want to meet. I first met him when we served together on the Executive Advisory Board for the World Police and Fire Games held in Calgary in 1997. He was a very caring and giving individual and I know he will be sorely missed as one of Alberta’s leading statesman.

    Don McDermid
    Assistant Commissioner RCMP (Retired)

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  15. Johnny Thorson :

    Dear Doris & Family:

    I was shocked and saddened to learn of Dave’s passing. What an incredible gentleman. Just being in his presence at any time made the world a better place.

    Whenever I play “Tie A Yellow Ribbon” on my banjo or hear the song played, I think of Dave as it was always a request from him.

    Cecile and I extend our deepest condolences to you and all of your family in the loss of a truly incredible man. God Bless.

    …Johnny Thorson

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  16. Dear Doris and Family

    We were saddened to learn of Dave’s passing but comforted by the full and wonderful life he lead. Dave was an inspiration to countless people, including me. We have lost a great leader, friend and family man but his legacy is certain to continue.

    I shall miss seeing his face at Spruce Meadows and at countless other events.

    The Allisons’ thoughts and prayers are with you.

    Ian & Joan Allison and family.

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  17. Dale and Merleen Hodgson :

    Dave/Karen and Doris

    Our sincere condolences to you. Merleen and I both loved David and we will miss his smiles, cheerful greetings and wonderful conversations. We are out of town and will not be available to attend the memorial but you are in our thoughts and prayers.
    Dale and Merleen Hodgson

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  18. Dear Doris, Donna, David and the family,

    We are thinking of you all at this very difficult time and send our love and best wishes. Dave was a wonderful man – as his obituary describes so well – who contributed so much to Canada and to Calgary while always remaining humble, devoted to his family and a fantastic friend. We have spent so many special times together over many years and will always treasure them; and we know that we and so many others will always remember Dave for what he did and even more for who he was.

    Ian, Stephanie, Damon and Justin

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  19. Roger & Beverly Ball :

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you all today. Dave was a very special individual who touched the lives of many people including ourselves. We have special memories of him especially at his Christmas celebrations at the Mitchell ranch. He always welcomed us with open arms and we are honored to have known him.

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  20. Ron & Irene Fraser :

    Ron & Irene Fraser.

    Doris, Donna,David & Karen & Family.

    We were sad to hear of Daves passing.. It was a joy and pleasure to talk & visit with him. He will be sadly missed by all.
    Our sincerest sympathy goes out to all.

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  21. David & Family

    As you shared with me at our golf game last week the state of your Dad’s health I hope in some small way that our conversation will help you in this time of loss.

    Your Dad was a pillar in our community, our City and Province and country but I will remember him most for his work – the creation and sustaining the Ernst C Manning Innovation Awards & Foundation.

    Per your request Calgary Technologies has made a small donation to the Foundation in recognition of all your Dad has done for the Innovation and Technology sector in Canada.

    David, when you would like at your timing please call me and I would like to provide my support to you.

    John W Masters
    President & CEO
    Calgary Technologies Inc

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  22. Ted and Margaret Newall :

    We were very sorry to read in the Globe and Mail about Dave’s passing. Please accept our heartfelt condolences.
    Warm regards,
    Margaret and Ted Newall

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  23. Winston Hopkins :

    Dear Mrs. Mitchel,
    I was saddened to read your husband’s obituary in the Globe & Mail of the 18th August 2010.
    I will always have fond memories of flying for Alberta Energy and of all the many considerations you gave to both myself and my family during this period.
    I would like to offer my sincere condolences to you and your family at this difficult and painfull time.
    I am sure Mr. Mitchell will be greatly missed by the many people who have had the privilege to have known him in his many and varied capacities throughout his life.
    With Kind regards,
    Winston Hopkins,
    (Captain Retired)

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  24. Beatrice Milner (Tom's Daughter) :

    So very sad to hear about Dave. My thoughts are with you. He had an amazing life – and I hope that as you share all your memories and funny stories that you will find comfort.

    Beatrice Milner

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  25. Doreen Buckley :

    Doris and Family
    My heartfelt thoughts to you all. It has been a long time since the Great Plains years, but they still remain very dear to my heart. Not only did I meet Bill at that time, but the company itself was a privilege to work for. This was due to Dave. I was honored that he attended Bill’s funeral five years ago. Hold your memories close! Doreen Buckley

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  26. I extend my deepest sympathy to each and every member of David’s family. I worked with him at Alberta Energy and he was a man who walked the talk. He was the most humble and approachable person I have ever met. Always a kind word and smile. The world has lost a great man.

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  27. Dianna and Wilton Van Lersberghe :

    Doris and Family

    Having worked with David for a number of years, we often reminisce of the great values, hard work, achievements, and fun we had.
    Sorry to see him leave; Most greatful for the values and memories he has left us with.
    Sincerely. Dianna and Wilton

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  28. Susan Schneider :

    To all of my deeply loved Mitchell family members: I feel very blessed to have so many wonderful memories with all of you, both on Maui and in Arizona. Dave was always such a special person and I keep all of you lovingly in my thoughts.
    Most Sincerely with lots of Aloha, Susan

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  29. thomas owen jr. :

    To Doris and family; we are saddened to hear about Daves passing. We wish to express our sincere condolences to you and your family. I had alot of fun working with Dad on Daves electrical projects out at the ranch. We thought that this fine gentleman would live forever. No memory is ever alone. Its at the end of the trail of memories a dozen trails that each have their own associations. We shall miss having Dave coming over for a visit. With our kindest regards Tommy Owen junior and Doris Owen.

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  30. Gerry & Anna Maier :

    Anna and I extend our condolences to Doris, Donna, David and all members of the Mitchell family. David’s passing is a loss for not only those who knew him, but for the entire country. We will all miss him but his legacy as a very strong leader will live on and serve as a model for future generations.

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  31. Herb & Madeleine Pinder :

    Dear Doris and Dave:

    Madeleine and I were not able to get to Calgary to the Memorial Service celebrating David’s life. We very much enjoyed the obituary and Gwyn’s recent column in the Globe.

    There are few special people who I have been fortunate to interact with in my life and Dave is certainly one of those. He was one of the most enthusiastic YPO members ever as he truly enjoyed the intellectual stimulation and the interaction with interesting people.

    With my lengthy tenure as a trustee of the Manning Awards I got to work with Dave and observe him in one of his most enthusiastic endeavors. It really should be called the Mitchell Foundation as this was the brainchild and the result of his long-term superlative efforts.

    At one point Dave wanted me to get in line to succeed him but I had a young family at the time and he would be an altogether too difficult an act to follow. I am pleased, however, that I did recommend John Read who I believe has turned out to be a very strong leader.

    Dave (as do you Doris) always showed great interest in Madeleine. He was a true gentleman.

    I will miss Dave – but feel deep gratitude for his life and our friendship.

    The Pinder family has made a donation to the Manning Awards in his honor.

    With sincere condolences and best personal regards,

    Herb & Madeleine Pinder

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  32. Maureen Dolyniuk :

    Dear David, Karen and Family

    I was very sad to learn about the death of your father earlier this month. His outstanding life is an inspiration to many and his professional and personal integrity certainly came across to all who had the privilege to meet him. His keen interest in the history of the Hudson’s Bay Company and the archival legacy that resulted from its operations over several centuries was evident by his involvement in ensuring the restoration of the HBC’s original charter from 1670 and in encouraging others to get a sense of the magnificent history of the HBC which parallels the history of the development of Canada. I remember with fondness his visit to the Hudson’s Bay Company Archives in Winnipeg with you and your children several years ago and his arranging a tour of the facilities for the Manning Awards delegates when they met in Winnipeg around that time.

    My deepest sympathies are with you and your family at this time.

    Maureen Dolyniuk
    Winnipeg, Manitoba

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  33. Erik the Butler :

    My deepest sympathy and condolences. The entire Mitchell clan was always warm and kind, a reflection of Mr. Mitchell indeed.
    Aloha,
    Erik Engstrom

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  34. Mount Royal University Foundation :

    To the Mitchell family: Mount Royal University President Dave Marshall and the Mount Royal University Foundation wishes to express our most sincere condolences and deepest sympathy for David’s passing.

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