Memorable Manitobans: David Alexander “Dave” Downie (1921-2014)
Born at Wawanesa on 29 March 1921, the youngest of four children of John Downie (1884-1932) and Mary Jane Haining (1889-1946), he received BA, BEd, MEd, and PhD degrees from the University of Manitoba. During the Second World War, he served as a navigator with the Royal Canadian Air Force.
His teaching career began at Boissevain Collegiate (1945) then he moved to Winnipeg where he taught at Lord Selkirk School (1952-1955), Norberry Junior High School, Glenlawn Collegiate, Lord Selkirk School, Churchill High School (1956-1957), and St. George School (1957-1958). He was the Principal of Glenwood School (1958-1963) and Dakota Collegiate (1963-1967).
He later was Superintendent for the River East School Division, President of the Manitoba Association of School Superintendents, President of the Manitoba Branch of the Canadian Association for Health, Physical Education and Recreation, Adjunct Professor of Education at the University of Manitoba, and a member of the Board for the International Peace Garden and the St. Vital YMCA.
In June 1947, he married Margaret Alice “Marg” Phillips (?-1996) and they had a girl and three boys. He was a member of Manitoba Amateur Basketballers Association, St. Vital Graduates Basketball Club, and Regents Park United Church. In recognition of his community service, he received a Queen Elizabeth II Silver Jubilee Medal (1977).
He died at Winnipeg on 22 August 2014.
Marriage registration [John Dorvine, Mary Jane Haining], Manitoba Vital Statistics.
Birth registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.
Annual Reports of the Manitoba Department of Education, Manitoba Legislative Library.
“Know your principal: Basketball one of his interests,” Winnipeg Free Press, 7 May 1964.
Obituary [Margaret Alice Downie], Winnipeg Free Press, 1 June 1996, page 45.
“A historical look at River East Transcona School Division, 1959-2002,” River East Transcona School Division, 2018.
Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 1 August 2023