Blake E. Spence

Spence, Blake E. age 83, of Champlin, MN, passed away peacefully on February 1st, 2018 surrounded by his loving family. Blake was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He worked at the Winnipeg Free Press, where he met and married his wife, Irene, in 1956. A job offer from the Minneapolis Star & Tribune brought him to Minnesota in 1959, becoming a U.S. citizen in 1965. After 37 years at the newspaper, Blake retired as the Press Room Manager in 1996. He valued the relationships of those he made in the paper industry and was proud of putting out a good paper. Blake's family brought him the greatest amount of joy and they benefited from his love and devotion. He treasured time with his grandchildren! The legacy of Blake's adventurous spirit, love of travel, passion of reading and zest for life will live on through them. Most will remember him for his kind heart, self-discipline, strong work ethic and enthusiasm for golf. His sense of adventure made special memories for his children; including traveling to New Zealand with his son and biking to Canada with his daughter. Everyone knows he had a passion for golfand it showed! Blake set the course record of 69 at Bunker Hills Golf Club, the first year it was opened. His handicap ranged between a 0-3 for many years. At 78 years young, he shot a 68 (albeit from the senior tees). Blake was grateful to have played courses all over the U.S. and Canada, even playing in Australia & New Zealand. Upon retirement, Blake and his wife spent winters in Arizona, where he enjoyed competitive golf matches in the desert sun. Blake will be deeply missed by his wife of 61 years, Irene; son, Todd (Maryjo) of Coon Rapids, MN and daughter, Kathryn (Paul) Giles of Spanish Fort, AL; grandchildren: Lillie, Blake, Abbey, Taylor (Mallory) & Andrew (Vienna); sister, Sharon Flett, Winnipeg, MB; brother-in-law, Bob Beairsto, Kelowna, B.C. and many cherished friends. Blake was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Shirley Beairsto. Per his request, a private service was held just for the immediate family. Memorials are welcomed to the Coon Rapids-Blaine Meals on Wheels where Blake was a dedicated volunteer for several years. 11800 Xeon Blvd., Coon Rapids, MN 55448.