Keeping his spirit alive

The Winnipeg Foundation

Fund honouring curling legend Vic Peters improves kids’ lives

Vic Peters' family
Vic Peters' family in 2016.

Vic Peters had an amazing ability to inspire people.

After the curling champion passed away, his daughter Kasandra Leafloor heard stories from many people about how much he meant to them.

“The biggest takeaway from those stories was that people always felt better about themselves after being with him, even if they just shared a 10-minute conversation,” Ms. Leafloor says. “I found that to be really inspiring and thought, ‘What an amazing gift he had that he could do that for people just by being himself.’”

The family established a Donor-Advised Fund at The Foundation in memory of Vic Peters, so they can continue to spread that gift.

Mr. Peters was one of Canada’s top curlers, winning the 1992 Brier and finishing third at that year’s world championship. He was a three-time Manitoba champion (1992, 1993 and 1997) and was inducted into the Manitoba Curling Hall of Fame in 2005. He was universally known as a good sport.

Born March 24, 1955 in Steinbach, Man., Mr. Peters was a natural athlete. He and wife Deb married in 1979 and made their life in Winnipeg. They had three children: son Daley and daughters Kasandra Leafloor and Elisabeth ‘Liz’ Fife.

In summer, Mr. Peters worked as a golf course Superintendent, first at Rossmere, then at Larters and finally at The Meadows. In winter, he worked as an Icemaker, and he curled. Family meant the world to him and he was a very involved parent and grandparent.

“He was fun and kind and very involved with our lives and that of his grandchildren,” Ms. Leafloor says.

He was also a great mentor, offering up his expertise to young curlers.

Mr. Peters overcame melanoma in the ’70s, and in 2011 it came back; he passed away in March 2016.

At the time, his family decided to establish a Memorial Fund at The Foundation, which allowed them to quickly have a place to which memorial gifts were directed. See the end of the story for more information about Memorial Funds. Vic and Deb Peters always said if they won the lottery they would build a golf course for under-served youth, a place where kids would feel special – and so the fund was named Vic’s Little VIPs.

Since Mr. Peters’ passing, hundreds of gifts have been made to the fund. The family has also held two golf tournaments to raise money for the fund and is planning a third for summer 2018.

After some time had passed, the family decided to convert their Memorial Fund into a Donor-Advised Fund. This type of fund allows the family to work with Foundation staff to decide which charities will receive grants.

“The fund will help us to keep [his] spirit alive in our family as we make granting decisions together and most importantly, the grandkids will be able to see how great their ‘Bopa’ was even though they missed out on growing up with him.”

The fund’s mandate is to support programs and projects that ‘help young people in this community develop critical skills to assist them in their pursuit of sporting excellence.’ The family recently made their first grant from the fund, supporting West Broadway Youth Outreach.

Vic's Little VIPs
Vic’s Little VIPs was one of 17 Memorial Funds established between 2014 and 2017.

“When it came time to make decisions about what direction we wanted the fund to go in, it was really important to me that we could continue to work on [dad’s] behalf,” Ms. Leafloor says. “Setting kids up for success by maybe making their lives a little better with these grants is what I am very passionate about. Learning life skills like how to work as a team and building confidence though participation and success can go so far in kid’s development and I know that [my dad] would be so proud.”

The family is honoured so many people have made gifts to the fund and participated in the golf tournaments.

“His legacy is not only of sporting excellence but also of being ‘a hell of a guy,’ which is how his peers described him. I think that is why people have allocated their financial support to the fund, and for me it is so satisfying that so many people remember him as being as great as I do. Everyone thinks their dad is the best and I am so honoured that the donors agree too.”


Memorial Funds

Honour a loved one with a memorial gift

At a time of loss, a gift to our community is a meaningful way to remember a loved one. The Winnipeg Foundation offers a number of memorial gift options.

Give to an existing fund

You can give, or direct memorial gifts, to an existing fund. The Foundation has hundreds of funds to choose from.

Create a new fund

Creating a Memorial Fund provides a lasting legacy in honour of someone you love and offers a simple, flexible way to look after memorial gifts. The Foundation offers you the flexibility of quickly creating a fund to which gifts can be directed. You can take your time deciding how those gifts will support our community. Memorial Funds can be ready to accept gifts within 24 hours.

Memorial Fund options

Once you are ready, you can decide how you want the fund to be used. You may choose to:

Establish an endowed (permanent) fund that gives back every year. This fund’s purpose may reflect your loved one’s values and favourite cause or benefit the community as a whole.

Contribute the gifts to an existing fund at The Winnipeg Foundation.

Give a one-time grant to a charitable organization of choice.

How The Foundation can help

We can help you with fund wording for the obituary, provide customized gift forms for a service, and create an online page where people can give through our website. We’ll notify you of all gifts received, thank each donor individually, and provide a tax receipt for each gift. Contact us to learn more.

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