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Date of Passing: Feb 03, 2023

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May 10, 1939 - February 3, 2023

Allayne Clare Sparks was born to Alice and Walter Sparks at Portage la Prairie on May 10, 1939. An older brother William had been born in Minto and died shortly after birth in 1930, and an older sister Myrna was born in Transcona in 1933. Allayne lived in Portage with her parents Walter and Alice until they bought a business with an attached residence in Minto in 1945, but with many renovations needed on the house and business, Myrna and Allayne lived in Winnipeg with their grandmother, Ida Jackson and their Aunt Iva. In 1946 with renovations completed the family moved back to Minto. Allayne had quite a colourful life in Minto growing up based on the many stories of her exploits told by family and friends. She was active in the community and belonged to the local CGIT. Allayne attended school in Minto until grade 11, then attended St. Michael's Academy in Brandon where she graduated in June of 1957.
On July 2, 1957 Allayne married Noel DeCorte at St. Agnes Catholic Church in Boissevain, and they lived on the farm with his parents, Jules and Angela DeCorte north of Minto until they were able to acquire the farm south of Minto. A lot of good memories were created on the farm, and it was a great place to raise a family. The town girl had become countrified. Five children were raised there, Andrew, Brenda, Trevor, Michael and Arlis. Allayne was busy raising a family, keeping a large productive garden, raising chickens and all manner of farm animal pets and wild orphans the kids dragged home. She was involved in the local community and with the CWL in Boissevain. She and Noel enjoyed socializing with friends, and visiting with neighbours. Bonfires and weiner roasts were family favourites and so much better when the neighbours attended too. Birthday parties, car-pooling for swimming lessons, Christmas concerts and other school and sporting events kept her running.... Allayne also played accordian with her dad's orchestra for local dances, and they enjoyed the whist tournaments in the winter. The local rink was well attended for skating, hockey and curling as the family grew and the annual winter carnival was always a favorite place to be. Allayne had many friends in Minto and loved to visit for tea and a game of cards, always with at least one child in tow.
The marriage failed, and Allayne moved to Wawanesa with the four youngest children in 1973. She worked as a secretary for Harvey Jones septic service. The following year she moved to an acerage south of Dunrea and worked as a receptionist for Dr. Lommerse at the Dunrea Medical Clinic. In August of 1974 she married Steve VanSchepdael and moved the family to his farm near Belmont. A daughter Patricia was born to them in 1976. The blended family had a total of 14 children and it was a busy place, although I don't think there were more than 10 of us at home at any one time. Allayne enjoyed life on the farm, and her large gardens were even bigger than before. Although she did most of the planting, the working, weeding and picking fell to the kids. and taking in the garden produce at the end of the summer was like a production line, with the older kids helping with the canning and freezing the middle ones baby-sitting the younger ones. Allayne had many friends in the Belmont area and enjoyed socializing and going to dances in the winter months. She and Steve travelled for holidays in places including Western Canada, Hawaii, and the Bahamas. When farming allowed, they spent time with the family at the lake, and visiting at the cabins with friends.
In 1990 Allayne and Steve parted ways and she moved with Patricia to Minto to live with and care for her parents, Walter and Alice Sparks. Moving back to Minto was like coming home for Allayne. Allayne worked at the AgQuest Research station as a field technician, which she enjoyed. She also took in other employees from the Ag-Quest Station as borders, making some good lasting friends. While living at Minto, Allayne met and became close friends with Arthur Eberling from Elm Creek.
After Alice and Walter passed away, Allayne moved to the farm at Elm Creek with Arthur in 1997. She continued to work for AgQuest at one of the satellite stations until her health made it too difficult. Allayne also enjoyed being on the farm again, and became close with Arthur's family and friends. They kept busy with the farm, and she loved accompanying Arthur on Municipal work and to the Municipal conferences. They took time to go fishing up north in some fly-in locations, and enjoyed travelling together.
In 2009 with Arthur and Allayne both having health issues, Allayne moved to Boissevain and lived with her daughter Brenda and family south of town for most of a year. When it became evident that she would not be able to move back to Elm Creek, she moved into Johnston Apartments in Boissevain in 2010 and was able to manage with Home Care. With day to day activities becoming more difficult, Allayne then moved into Westview Lodge in 2011.
With less responsibilities and the excellent care she blossomed and her health seemed to impove a lot. She knew many of the other residents and was able to re-kindle friendships from the past. Some of the neighbours she had at Minto were now neighbours at the Lodge. She also made some new friendships
Allayne met and married Calvin Hayduk at Westview Lodge on June 26, 2011. It was an exciting day not only for them but for the residents as well as it was the first wedding known to have been held there. They had four years together, and enjoyed doing activities together including outings on their scooters down town to the bakery or coffee shop on nice days. Calvin's health failed and he passed in 2015.
Allayne, soon made a close friendship with Archie Saltel, and they were seen together enjoying each other’s company in her room or his watching movies, reading books, making puzzels and even trying to dance a little when there was entertainment.
Archie passed away in 2020, and missing his companionship and with the pandemic in full swing, she found time long. Allayne missed the outings and visitations with family that were no longer possible, or more difficult to arrange. Allayne was struggling with the yo-yo affects of dementia but was also beginning to become more active in scheduled activities, and loved playing bingo again. She enjoyed her visits with Rev. Rolanda Taylor and looked forward to them.
Allayne passed away unexpectedly but peacefully on February 3, 2023 at age 83.
Allayne was pre-deceased by her parents, Alice and Walter Sparks, an infant brother William Sparks, her sister Myrna Rourke, and two sons Andrew DeCorte and Michael DeCorte.
Allayne is survived by two daughters, Brenda (Dale) Lyons, and Patricia VanSchepdael, two sons, Trevor DeCorte (Laura Eberling) and Arlis DeCorte. 17 Grandchildren: Angela, Matthew, Aaron, Rebekah, Jenna, Tianna, Isaac, Samara, Jeremy, Megan, Amber, Dustyn, Carlene, Drew, Logan, Darian and Dylan. As well as 15 great grandchildren.
A private family graveside service will take place at Minto Cemetery.
Donations in memory of Allayne may be made to the Westview Lodge Personal Care Home, Box 819, Boissevain, MB R0K 0E0 or to a charity of one's choice.


Wheatland Funeral Service

As published in Brandon Sun on Feb 11, 2023

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