It is with the heaviest of hearts that we bid farewell to our beloved father, Blaise Nelson. Pre-deceased by his darling wife, our mother, Ann Elizabeth Nelson, on March 11 of this year, Blaise is survived by daughters Fiona (Kris), Tara (Stephen) and Shannon (Kevin), and his deeply adored grandson Alex. He also leaves his brother-in-law in Ontario and cousins in the U.K.

Born in Belfast to William and Margaret Nelson, Blaise’s early childhood was marked by the upheaval of World War II. In 1948, the family moved to Montreal where Blaise revelled in an idyllic Canadian boyhood of sports, Boy Scouts and camping. When his father passed away in 1952, he and his mother moved back to Belfast, but Canada always called to him. At the age of sixteen Blaise met with Hudson’s Bay recruiters in Belfast and applied to return to Canada as a fur trapper for The Bay. When they found out he was the only son of a widow, they declined his application.

This was our good fortune because in 1959 he met our mother Ann and was instantly smitten. By then he was a young officer in the Royal Ulster Constabulary who walked the beat at the end of Ann’s street. He played it cool, walked her home a few times, took her dancing and charmed her right into his arms. They married in September 1962, and welcomed Fiona to the family a year later. In 1967, after serving ten years in the RUC in Belfast, Blaise applied to the Edmonton Police Service and the family emigrated to Canada. Settled in Edmonton, and later Sherwood Park, the family was happily completed by the addition of Tara and Shannon.

Blaise retired in 1997, having served 40 years in law enforcement in Belfast and Edmonton. He was a champion swimmer who was recognized by the Royal Humane Society, while in the RUC, for jumping into the Lagan River to rescue a drowning man. By the time he retired from the EPS, at the rank of Staff Sergeant, he had worked in sex crimes, arson, child abuse and homicide. He took great pride in his work and was held in high regard by all his colleagues.

Blaise and Ann moved to Victoria in 1998 and were finally able to engage in some world travels. Over the years they visited several cities in Europe and the US, and went on two cruises. Their final big trip was in 2018 when the entire family travelled together to Northern Ireland.

Blaise lost his life’s companion, and true love, on March 11, 2020. We were not able to hold a celebration of life at that time so a joint celebration and interment for both of them was held on Monday, November 16, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. for invited guests to attend in person. A recording of the service can be found below.

There were many beloved animals in Blaise’s life, including Pixie the cat, dogs Goldie, Paddington and Rupert, and many grand-cats and grand-dogs. If people wish, in lieu of flowers, donations to a humane society or animal rescue would be welcomed.

Condolences may also be offered to the family below.

McCall Gardens
www.mccallgardens.com


 

 

  • Dawnine Sembaluk

    Our heartfelt condolences to you all. I am so very sorry, Shan. Hugs and love to you, your sisters and family.

  • Lori Swanstrom & Family

    Fiona, Kris, Tara, Stephen, Shannon, Kevin & Alex,

    On behalf of our whole family we pass on our deepest sympathy for the absolutely huge & shocking losses you’ve had to endure this year – as we’ve all said there are ’simply no words’. Your parents were amazing and raised three incredible girls who they were so proud of. There was never a time that I talked to them & they didn’t also mention Alex – how much they adored him! I feel blessed to have known both your parents for so long. They were so incredible when we first came to the island & some of my best memories of our first island times were with them. They have a love story that few people ever have the chance to live – may they rest in peace together. I have no doubt they will be looking over all of you. Xoxo

  • Natasha Molinari

    Dear Tara, Shannon, Fiona, Alex and family,

    I am so sorry to hear about your loss. Blaise and Ann were such open, gentle, loving and caring people who really brightened the whole neighbourhood and I’m so grateful for the relationship we were able to develop as we grew up as neighbours alongside them! They will surely be missed but will remain forever in our hearts and thoughts with love and many fond memories. Sending love and best wishes to you all in this difficult time.

  • Mike, Brenda and Robert Cook

    It is difficult to put into words the admiration and respect that we had for Blaise and Anne. Not only was Blaise my supervisor at the EPS but a respected friend. Blaise and Anne were a tremendous support to us when Robert was born, he always enjoyed his visits to the Nelsons. Chasing Rupert around the house and reading stories with them. There was no limit to the kindness that they showed us. For those who did not know Blaise I am sure that they only saw a Giant of a Man, he was however the most kind individual I have ever known.
    Our sincere sympathy goes out to your family, we will always think fondly of the Nelsons.

  • Nicole Molinari

    Dear Fiona, Tara, Shannon, Alex and family,

    I am so sorry for your loss. I could only imagine how hard it is losing both Blaise and Ann so close together, although it is so heartwarming to know they are reunited once again.

    As close neighbours, my sister Natasha and I grew up from kids to adults as they aged. They saw us grow, looked out for and over us, and were always so interested in what we were doing with our lives. When we moved away from home and were no longer neighbours, each time we visited, we were mutually eager to catch up with each other and hear about the recent goings-on. I will miss dearly bumping into them in the driveway or stopping by their house for a chat. They were so kind, loving, warm, and knew all the good neighbourhood gossip. They will always be close to my heart.

    Nicole Molinari (Holly Boettcher’s daughter)

  • Marketa and Jacob

    Marketa and Jacob
    Deepest condolences to Fiona, Tara, Shannon and the family.
    I am so sad for your loss. I feel so lucky to know both of your parents. The neighbourhood will not be the same without them.
    It was so comforting to have them across the street. I knew I was always welcome to pop by. They were supportive, caring and gave beautiful hugs.
    Our dog Mr T loved them so much we could not go for a walk unless we stop to say hello.
    I am already missing them. They will be in my heart forever. I am sure that their love is an inspiration for many.
    Praying for all of you.

  • Bill SURMON EPS/427/Ret.

    Blaise was a valued and highly respected Member of our Recruit Training Class #26 at EPS back in Sept/67. He set a fine personal and professional example for his classmates and the whole Service. Kind regards and condolences to his girls and their families.

  • The Grelowskis

    Sending our hugs and our condolences on the loss of your beloved dad at this sad time. Our whole family has such lovely memories of visiting with both your parents in Victoria. They always had great stories to entertain us and were so interested in what was going on with all of us. Both Ann and Blaise were such lovely people and we will miss them. We hope that you can keep your special memories of your Dad and Mom close to your hearts.
    love Jo, Ron, James and Jon

  • Mark & Wendy Miller

    Fiona, Tara and Shannon

    Our thoughts are with you all at this time.

  • Uel Beattie

    Blaise and I met through our mutual love of swimming, we were in our early teens. We got on well and became as close as brothers. We both joined the RUC and both swam for the polo team. We thought we were pretty good. Blaise and Ann went to Canada, as I knew he always would, but neither time or distance ever diminished our friendship. I share the terrible sense of loss with his beloved girls. I loved the big guy.

  • Terry Mehmel

    Wow, what a shock to see and to read. I was a member of EPS for only 6 years but it was long enough to get to know your dad. What a giant of a man. I had a lot of respect for the person that he was. I am so sorry for your loss and also ours. There is a big hole that he left. I have to say that every time that I saw Tara, I could see Blaise and I was and am so proud of her.

    God bless you all.

  • Victoria Levesque

    Gabe Levesque and myself, Victoria Levesque are thinking of the whole family at this difficult time. Gabe and I remember Ann and Blais fondly over the years during the time we lived beside them on Superior St. Ann and Blaise dotted on our first child, Sylvie, and made those first years of her life richer and more welcoming. Ann and Blaise Nelson were a lovely couple and we were lucky to have know them.

    Victoria, Gabe, Sylvie, and Felix Levesque

  • Uel Beattie

    Blaise and I met in our early teens through a mutual love of swimming – especially water polo. We swam for the same amateur club, then against each other in schools competitions, then with each other in the RUC team that won the National Championships. We got on from day one and became as close as brothers, I never remember a fallout. When you got to know the Nelsons, you got to know them all. They were that sort of a family I was privileged to know Ann, Blaise’s lovely wife. Time and distance never diminished our friendship. I just loved the big guy. Fiona, Tara and Shannon have lost their dear Mum and Dad. I have lost my oldest friend. I value the memories.

  • Barney Stevens

    Tara and family:
    Sorry to hear of the passing of your father. Our thoughts and prayers are with your family all at this time. I had the distinct pleasure of knowing and working with your Dad in the EPS. He was a true gentleman and very much a professional in his service to the citizens of Edmonton. He will be dearly missed.

    Barney Stevens

  • Nick Perry

    Blaise was my supervisor in the early 90’s. Rarely have I encountered someone like him. He was a genuine gentleman. Blaise was direct and no nonsense. But, he was fair and empathetic. I definitely looked up to him as a mentor. I learned a great deal about people management from him. Many of his leadership traits I eventually translated into my own approach when I became a supervisor. Apart from the work aspect, I found him to be an engaging man who took an interest in the people in his sphere of influence. He definitely impacted my life in a positive way and will be sorely missed.

  • Jane Pendlebury

    Such a beautiful tribute to your Dad. We are so so sad and sorry especially after loosing your lovely Mum not so long ago too. We are so grateful to have been in touch with your Dad, Blaise this past year and especially for his Cousin Phyllis after all these years apart. It’s testiment to both Blaise and Ann who raised such a fine, upstanding, loving family, Fiona, Tara, Shannon who they must have been so immensely proud of. Our love and prayers go out to you. Phyllis, Jane Mark xxxx
    Miles apart but forever in our hearts

  • Brenda Seefried

    Our sincerest condolences to you Tara, Fiona and Shannon on the loss of your dad. I will cherish my childhood memories of both of your parents, they were lovely people. I will always remember your dad taking Paddington for walks around the block, he was certainly a gentle giant. My fondest memory of your mom was her setting tea out for us as little girls, we would feel so grown up to be sitting in the living room and having conversations with your mom and also your grandma when she would visit.
    We will certainly be thinking of you girls on Monday and sending our love and prayers.
    Love Brenda and Sheldon

  • Barrie and Anne Bolton

    Dear Fiona, Tara, and Shannon
    We are very sorry to hear of Blaise passing. It was a sad shock when we heard about your mum as well. Victoria and family know and also send their condolences. We plan to be present for the service Monday, and will celebrate the lives of two fine people. Wishing you all our blessings and thoughts. Stay well.
    Barrie and Anne Bolton

  • Ray Willis

    Our sincere condolences to all members of the family. Anne and Blaise were lovely neighbors and friends. Will miss our block conversations and memories of our work time in Edmonton.
    Ray and Brenda Willis

  • Elaine Scarth

    We are so sorry for your losses during this difficult year.
    Many fond memories and cherished boughts of laughter with your family when we all started out our young families on Alderwood Cres. in Sherwood Park in the 70,s

    Sadly missed but never forgotten as they have left a forever imprint in many peoples lives.

    Love and strength to all

    The Scarth Family

  • Mary-Frances Zielinski

    Dear Tara and family; Your parents were amazing people and that shines through all of you. They were special and they truly showed others every day what it meant to be a wonderful caring soul. Many many condolences on your loss.

    Mary-Frances Zielinski

  • Janet and Harry Klemm

    We are so sorry to hear about your Dad. Our hearts go out to you all.

  • Carla Sheen

    So sorry for anorher huge loss, prayers are with you all…from all the Scarths

  • Gerry Roden

    My condolences to Blaise’s and Ann’s family. Loosing ones parents is difficult, especially in these trying times when we cannot hold celebrations of life in the usual manner. Although we cannot attend in person, we will be there in spirit. Peace be to you all and to Blaise and Ann. Fond memories of work. ❤️

  • Harold Jimmy

    I cannot imagine what you must be feeling during this difficult time.my sincerest condolences to you Shannon, Tara and Fiona and your families. Just know that I am here and just a phone call away if you feel you need to talk.
    Much love
    H

  • Ms Jonnie Goyer

    Fiona, Tara and Shannon – a lovely tribute to your dad and also your mum. Love and strength to you all. Jonnie

  • Deana Bruce

    Well written ladies! I feel sad that you are having to say goodbye to your dad so soon after the passing of your mom. They are together again, whole and I’m sure full of love for you and your families. Lots of virtual hugs for you all!❤️Deana, Allan, Mackenzie and Liam Bruce ( Friends of Shannon)

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