ForeverMissed
This memorial website was created in memory of our incredible husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, colleague, and friend. Ave passed away of natural causes on May 22, 2021.

Ave was a titan. A legend. A man among men. We know that the profound impact of his life and death is felt by many and we invite you to celebrate his incredible legacy with us. Our family has deeply appreciated every story and memory that has been shared with us so far. Please feel free to post your messages, tributes, and memories here in the hopes of sharing both our joy and our grief together. 

Short tributes can be posted using the Tribute section below. Photos, stories, and video messages can be shared by clicking the Stories or Gallery tab at the top of the page. Our hope is to compile these tributes and memories into a book later on.

Funeral Information:

Ave was larger than life, and loved nothing more than entertaining family and friends (often with the biggest fireworks show possible). While we wish we could have celebrated with each of you in person, we are of course limited by COVID restrictions. Thank you to everyone who took the time to share with us and honour Ave in different ways despite the circumstances. 

A private funeral was held for Ave on Friday, May 28 in Spruce Grove. You are most welcome to view the recording using the link below. His eulogy has also been posted in the "Life" section of this site. Our hearts burst seeing all the cars honking in the parking lot as we exited the Church, and for those that were not able to participate, you can view the videos posted in the Gallery section. You could sure feel Ave's power there that morning.

Our family would also like to send a special thank you to Curtis and the Harr family for putting together a truly special stock car in honour of Ave. Hearing the engine fire up after the funeral brought us all to tears. Pictures and videos of the car can also be found in the Gallery.

Funeral Recording Link: https://youtu.be/y4ZRvCu4vP0

Flowers and Donations:

Thank you to each of you who sent arrangements to the house or to the Church for the funeral service. We were showered with love and truly enjoyed seeing Ave surrounded by flowers from all the people who cared for him.

Ave was well known for his generosity, and one of his favourite charities is the
Marian Centre in EdmontonOnline donations can be made in Ave's name; thank you for honouring him and the good work of the Marian Centre in this way.

Posted by Rick Tinker on May 26, 2021
What an incredibly inspirational man! Worked hard, Played just as hard but loved his family and our Lord above all. I am so grateful to have met Ave and shared so many boating moments from boat shows to his always delicate but firm "negotiations" . Our family at Skier's Choice shares your grief and also celebrates his amazing life. A true friend to our industry and a true friend to all of us here in Tennessee. God Bless you, Ave.
Posted by Daniel Westgeest on May 26, 2021
We would like to express our sincere condolences to Priscilla and family. Our thoughts and prayers go out to you during this difficult time.

Ave was a kind and generous man, a pillar of his community. He will be dearly missed but never forgotten. May he Rest In Peace.
Posted by Scott Crutchfield on May 26, 2021
I am grateful and thankful that God had his plan to have put Ave into my world.

When our paths crossed we connected instantly, I was drawn to his Love for his family, his competitiveness, generosity, strength and compassion for others. 

Our long conversations about life our families and business are going to be missed for sure. I know now what a gift it was to have such a blessing called Ave Spratt in my life and I'm forever grateful for his support and friendship. I want to thank your family for sharing such a special man with the rest of us over the years.

You're family is in our thoughts and Prayers.

Rest in Peace my friend!

Posted by John Richards on May 26, 2021
A beautiful man with a beautiful family.
Priscilla and family, please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you at this time of great loss.
May almighty God welcome Ave with loving arms into his Kingdom ✝️ Amen.

John and Deb
Posted by Carl Harr on May 25, 2021
Ave you were the driving force behind our NASCAR team. “How can I help ?” was your only question.

A true friend and mentor, your values and influence on my family extended far beyond our sport.

Memories of spending time with Ave and his family will be cherished forever.

Godspeed my friend.
Posted by Nk Truck on May 25, 2021
I always looked forward to spending some time at large family gatherings to have a few words with Ave . He will be missed . Nick
Posted by Trevor Dreger on May 25, 2021
I always admired Ave’s stature and presence, but it was his genuine spirit that made him such an incredible leader. His values and dedication were a big reason I was drawn back to the MMS family.

We were blessed with one last visit from Ave only days before his passing. Ave always made everyone feel valued and important during his visits, but this conversation was especially encouraging and positive which inspired and motivated all. His physical presence will be missed greatly however his spirit will live on.

On behalf of the South Edmonton branch I want to express our heartfelt condolences to the Spratt family.

Deepest sympathies,
Trevor Dreger
Posted by Luc de gaspe beaubien on May 25, 2021
The world has lost a builder, visionary and gentleman.  His smile and demeanor will never be forgotten; and his ability to bring people together was legendary. I was fortunate enough to work with him in 2 careers. I look forward to catching up with him in heaven and finalizing the chapter of this go-around. I know everyone at BRP/Bombardier and Mahindra will never forget him. 
Posted by Robert Lumley on May 25, 2021
Laurenne, Priscilla and the entire Spratt family. I feel very fortunate to have known and worked with Ave for more than 20 years. In all that time, we talked about our families as much as we talked about business. I not only respected him personally and professionally , but will always be grateful for his support and friendship. I want to thank your family, and especially you Priscilla for sharing him with us. I'm sorry for all the times we took him away from you. I can't begin to imagine how much he will be missed; but I know that he would be disappointed in me if I wasn't focusing on the Celebration of an exceptional life lived instead . He inspired me and will continue to do so for years to come. Rest In Peace my friend.
Bob Lumley (BRP)
Posted by Trent Fleming on May 25, 2021
While I didn’t know Abe as long as most.. his lessons will live on with me forever. Ave always had the greatest way of making everyone feel important and equal.. he wasn’t scared to grab a broom and do what needed to be done. His work ethic and love for his family is something the world needs more of. The day he gave me $20 to set off my avalanche bag in a classroom when it was dead silent.. full of people... his laugh was never ending...I will cherish those Greta memories along with the valuable lessons he taught forever.
Posted by Leslie Seward on May 25, 2021
Ave and his family set a beautiful example of how living a life rooted in God and built on God brings wondrous joy.
The feeling of comfort of knowing Ave is always nearby, willing and eager to be there if you need him is somehow even greater now that he is with God.
Ave cleared the snow from the driveway after a winter storm and the memory warms and melts the chilly ache in my heart today.
The band at one of those hugemongous birthday parties allowed me to sing a song for Ave. Now when I sing along to "Last Kiss" I'll celebrate you again and have faith that you're singing too.
Posted by Mike Landry on May 25, 2021
Ave Spratt was one of the kindest, most thoughtful, and generous men I've ever known. To properly describe the care and kindness he showed to my family - and to me personally - from the time we arrived in Spruce Grove in 2006 almost seems a challenge beyond words. Ave supported me in my ministry at the Church and the schools, gave my family the opportunity to create some treasured memories, and challenged me by his example and by his friendship to be a better Christian, a better husband, and a better father.
Posted by Kevin Wiebe on May 25, 2021
To the Spratt Family

We have all looked up to Ave, over the years, for his dedication and leadership. His skills, humor, strength have inspired us to perform at our best.

I hope at this time of loss and great family change, that your strength moves you forward to brighter days.

You are all in our thoughts.

On behalf of the Calgary MMS Branch “OUR CONDOLENCES”

We thank you Ave for all that you have done. You will never be forgotten

Kevin Wiebe|
Martin Motor Sports
Calgary Branch Manager
Posted by Katrina Meloche on May 25, 2021
Growing up at the lake is special in itself but what makes it my forever home is the beautiful memories and loving families surrounding. I will be eternally grateful for the life that Ave helped build at the lake from clearing all the rinks in the winter to generously taking us surfing in the summer. Ave will always be a lake legend and the king of awesome toys. He was also aside from the fun stuff he was so genuine and so kind and to grow up knowing I had a second family a few houses down is something you can only dream of. Thank you Ave and family for teaching me to have faith and to always be kind. He will be missed and jackfish just won’t be the same without him, with a heavy heart I will think of Ave every time I look at the lake. ⛵️❤️
Page 2 of 2

Leave a Tribute

 
Recent Tributes
Posted by Rob Wiedeman on June 7, 2021
Ave was as great of a contributor to his community as he was to his family.
When an ill informed local politician said that Aves company never did much for the community I was furious and promptly filled her in.
When I mentioned it to Ave he calmly informed me he was not too concerned about her statement and took it all in stride.

Ave not only contributed to his local community but to worthy causes all over the county ,Edmonton and elsewhere.

Ave also had a little thirst for danger letting me take his boat and trying to pull him up in a parasail. Not being used to that much power I Ultimately drug him through the mud instead. Much to the horror of Pricilla But Ave calmly got up and went on to his next task.

Our family will miss him and we were privileged to know him as a friend.
Posted by Liz Fiege on June 6, 2021
Priscilla, just wanted to let you know that you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. Take care.
Posted by Andrew Hildebrand on June 3, 2021
Like many, I was completely shocked to read about Ave's passing in the Journal today. Ave was a great friend in our high school years at Shep. We bought our first boat together in 1979 and took many of our high school pals on "celebrity ski dates" they were the celebrities and paid for the boat gas. We enjoyed many sledding trips, boat holidays in BC. and played a lot of volleyball together after high school. Ave was a real competitor with a gentle disposition and that wonderful deep laugh. I really appreciated his business savvy and like many of his friends, filled our garage with the tools and toys he was passionate to share and sell us. The world could sure use more guys like Ave. For those of us who knew him...its up to us to carry that spirit and grab the rope. Im missing you Ave.
his Life

Ave's Funeral Mass Eulogy

Delivered by: Laurenne and Sterling Spratt

On June 12, 1961, God smirked and said to Ralph and Eva Spratt, “you better buckle up your bootstraps”.
And so started the race of a lifetime. A high-octane life lived full-throttle right up until the final lap and checkered flag. (How am I doing with my racing metaphors so far Dad?)
Dad was a born entrepreneur. A creator. A racehorse. A mover and a shaker who never quite could stand (or sit) still. Most children don’t optimize their paper routes and sell them to other kids for a small profit, but Dad did. Most teenagers don’t charge a per-car admission to their legendary high school parties, but Dad did. Most adults don’t build businesses while still putting family, faith, and friends first, but Dad did.
He grew up in Edmonton, surrounded by the love and faith of his parents, sister Idel, and brother Mitch. While I wish I could tell you more stories of his childhood, they’ve been redacted, sealed, and closely guarded with military precision, NEVER to be shared with his children. Dad, very well played, but despite your best efforts, we still have a fairly good sense of what those years looked like as evidenced by a trail of wrecked snowmobiles, crashed cars, torn up lawns, and a few unintentional story leaks from high school friends (you know who you are). We also know this because the apples sure didn’t fall far from the tree.
As a teenager, Dad worked with his father Ralph at Martin Farm Equipment as it was called at the time. His passion for John Deere started early while working alongside dear friends, although based on some of the stories I’ve heard, I’m not sure how much work was actually getting done which I’m sure Ralph was thrilled about.
In 1987, Dad married the love of his life, our mother Priscilla. Mom says she knew Dad was the one when he saved her a honey cruller donut that he absolutely would have wanted to keep for himself. And we must say, for a man that loves huge gestures and big moments, the story of his proposal doesn’t quite fit the mold and it makes us laugh to this day. It was a ringless, off the cuff, OVER THE PHONE “well, I guess we should get married”. So they did. And what a marriage it has been—34 years and a truly stunning example of love, devotion, true partnership, and living your faith through the sacrament of marriage.
During this time, Dad decided to pursue a new passion—the marine industry. He cut his teeth at Spruce Grove Marineland, before moving to Huston Leisure to start the notorious LA Ski brand—which to this day still lives on in a few sheds; the wetsuits easily spotted due to large amounts of neon which I’ve heard is starting to make a comeback. Dad always was a trendsetter.
And then of course, we came along. As our mother says, after four, what was five? After five, what was six? And then I think they may have lost count altogether and here all eight of us are. It’s difficult to capture the magic of our family and put it into words. That said, I have no doubt where that magic comes from—nothing meant more to our Dad than his wife and his children (and now children-in-law, and grandchildren), and he spent his life walking alongside each of us every. single. step of the way. He was our rock. Our patriarch. Our safe place. Our home. He was there to pick us up when we fell, dust us off a bit, and then told us to get back out there. He was there to cheer us on, and also to make sure we knew when we were out of line (and trust me, we knew). He was always down for a dance party, a car purchase, a surf lesson, or a round of karaoke. He never quite figured out text messages and still wrote them like emails, always signed with “Love, Dad”. But it didn’t matter because his messages came without fail. He showed up for each and every event to celebrate our accomplishments no matter how packed his schedule was. He taught us the value of hard work, and what it means to be fiercely loyal. He taught us the importance of faith, and the joy that comes from serving others and living for something bigger than yourself. But most of all, by living it completely, resolutely, steadfastly, and leading by example, he taught us integrity. What it means to unapologetically and unwaveringly do the right thing no matter what.
For the past twenty years, Dad was on a mission. And as every single one of us knows, once Ave Spratt wanted to do something, you best get on board or get out of the way because either way something incredible was going to happen. Anyone who has experienced being on the other side of the negotiating table with Dad (or the volleyball net for that matter), knows that he NEVER left anything on the table. He wanted to share the joy of being on the water, on the road, in the dirt, or in the mountains with as many families and individuals as possible through his passion for boats and anything else with a throttle or gas pedal. His professional life’s work was growing Martin Deerline and Martin Motor Sports alongside his partners, suppliers, staff, and clients to the vibrant businesses they are today—and the enormous number of touching notes we’ve received from his many connections who have been able to share in this joy are a tribute to his resounding success. He didn’t just build a business, he built up an entire industry across North America simply by living his passion each and every day, and doing so while rooted in faith, charity, and integrity. There was nothing he loved more than seeing families spending time together creating memories so thank you to all of you who have been part of this incredible journey.
That said, his mission in life was so much more than just business. He was 100% in it for the people. He believed in the incredible power of people working together and wanted to leave the world better than he found it. For a man who I’m not quite sure has ever finished reading a full book, he sure wrote the one on authentic leadership. He mentored so many, and changed an incredible number of lives for the better simply because he genuinely cared, took an interest in the people around him, and wanted nothing more than to see them succeed. He believed in a much larger, higher purpose and nothing he did was for himself. Each and every moment of his life was spent building others up, and he often spoke of the responsibility of leadership. Business for him was about taking care of the families who were relying on him (which is a bit astounding when he already had a family our size to take care of). He lived to entertain, to socialize, to be generous, and to learn more about the people around him. He welcomed so many to our home to enjoy lake life, skating, and of course a few epic fireworks shows along the way. Many of you have reached out with touching stories about how Dad irrevocably altered the course of your lives through his wisdom, sincerity, support, and steadfast belief in greatness. He couldn’t be more proud of each and every one of you and I know he will never stop cheering you on. Thank you for being living testaments to his kindness and generosity.
And if all of those things weren’t enough for a full and complete life—because it’s Dad, we have to add a bit more. Many of you are connected through his many hobbies, ministry work, and volunteer efforts. I want you all to know that whether it was racing, go-karting, car rallying, volleyball, waterskiing, creating fireworks shows, surfing, golfing, youth camps, the Marian Centre, Holy Trinity, the Catholic Archdiocese, Jackfish Lake, what I’m naming The Order of Perfect Hot Tub pH Levels, or the many other things I’m sure I’m missing—you helped bring so much joy to our father’s life and for that we are eternally grateful. We’re also quite certain he has been propping up Canadian Tire’s stock for a while so if you’re a shareholder we would advise you to divest because they just lost their best customer.
They say the measure of a man is the legacy he leaves behind and the things that live on long after he’s gone, and so I wanted to spend a few moments reflecting on the quite literally thousands of messages we’ve received over the past few days. They have come from all over North America, from people young and old, at different places in life, connected to Dad in different ways, but the same words are repeated over, and over, and over again. Ave was a legend. A pillar. A titan. A true gentleman. A class act. A man of faith. A man of integrity. A family man. The picture of generosity. How amazing is it that one man could be so astoundingly consistent and authentic no matter where he went or what he was doing?
He was all those things and more, and because of that we have absolutely no regrets. It’s truly incredible because his life could not have been more full. He could not have served any greater purpose. He could not have done any more. There was nothing left unsaid. So while his passing is certainly devastating and we mourn the loss of our father, husband, grandfather, brother, uncle, colleague, and friend, it’s also SO beautiful and we have such profound gratitude for the 59 years, 11 months, and 10 days that we had with him. He went exactly the way he should have—in the prime of his life, doing what he loved, his life’s work complete. He now joins our Lord in heaven and is exactly where he belongs for eternity.
In closing, on behalf of our entire family, I want to express our sincere thanks for every single message, meal, flower arrangement, favour, phone call, photo, story, thought, and prayer. While we have not been near as good as our Dad was at connecting with each one of you, each tribute has made an otherwise devastating week instantly brighter, and lifted us back up when the floor fell out from beneath our feet. Each of these acts of kindness is also beautiful way to honour Ave and the generosity he displayed all throughout his life—thank you to each of you for carrying on his legacy in this way.
St. Paul said “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”
So you can rest now Dad. You won the race and we could not be more proud of you.
Recent stories

When Ave was little

Shared by maureen mackrory on June 2, 2021
Ave’s mom dad sister and brother often came to visit in our home. Jeanette and Maureen had bought their parents an electrical blanket with two switches for Christmas. One switch warmed up Milly and one switch was lowered to accommodate Jim who was always hot. This was before Ave was in school. He snuck into the bedroom crossed the switches so Jim kept putting his dial down as he sweat and Milly get jacking hers up because she was freezing. They did not discover this until the morning and tracked the trickster down to Ave. He was quite pleased with himself.              Another incident happened when Jim was pitching ball at a ballgame and Jeanette was keeping score for the team. She was also looking after Ave who was about 4 years old. All of a sudden the umpire stopped the game.  Who’s little boy is that pointing to the top of the school fence which was a very high backstop. Jeanette had to convince him to come down carefully. Ave loved to take risks even at a young age.      The last little story is when we were all at the Spratt’s home. Their parents had gone out. Ave disappeared for a very short time without asking. He came back with popsicles for us all. He had used his own pocket money. Right from the get ho he was so very generous. We will never forget him when he was young or when he became the responsible generous man people LOVED

Homily from family mass prior to Thursday's viewing (from Deacon Pat Hessel)

Shared by Laurenne Spratt on May 29, 2021

Ave Spratt – Memorial Mass

It’s unfortunate that our numbers are so limited this evening, but I am grateful for the opportunity to speak more personally with you.

Priscilla, the other night after Mass, we talked about Ave’s passing. I remember that, with a smile on your face, you told me about Ave’s last day, driving the go-kart, indulging his “need for speed.” It was very telling that, while most people in your situation would have been speaking about your own personal grief and challenges, just a few days after losing your husband, you were focused on the fact that, if Ave had to have a last day on earth, this was a good one.

When I asked how you and the family were doing, I got a sense that both you and the family, although terribly saddened by Ave’s death, had already achieved some level of peace. How does that happen? I remember that you spoke to me about your sense that heaven and earth are not distant from one another. If I understood you correctly, you were saying (my words) that, if there is a barrier between heaven and earth, it’s more like an old screen than a brick wall. This is the blessing of faith. And we see it reflected in the first reading that you chose for this evening’s Mass: “In the eyes of the foolish, they seemed to have died, and their departure was thought to be a disaster, and their going from us to be their destruction, but they are at peace.”

I think we take away two messages. First, if by faith, we believe that Ave is at peace, then we can share with him some level of peace and even joy, despite our sadness. And please understand that sadness is normal and healthy and real. Our faith gives us hope, but it can’t entirely insulate us from sorrow. And second is the point that you made, Priscilla – the dead are never far from us. Ave will never be far from us.

I also saw an image of one of your “Ave stories” in the second reading that you chose. You told me that in the year 2000, Ave received his first communion. Afterward, you asked him how he felt when he received the Eucharist. His response: “I felt complete.”

In this second reading, Saint Paul was writing to Timothy. He knew that his own death was imminent, and yet he had a sense of peace. His words speak of a sense of – to use Ave’s word – completion: “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” Ave’s first communion was not the end of his race, but was the foundation of a spiritual strength that would, indeed, allow him to finish the race.

That’s what I saw in this reading. But I wondered whether you chose it because of Ave’s fascination with actual racing. Was that it? I still remember him telling me: “Life begins at 600 horsepower!”

Father Paul chose the Gospel reading, and I’m happy he chose the one he did. It allows me to make an important observation about Ave – an observation that you, his children – should understand and remember.

Jesus said: “The person who loves their life loses it, and the person who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life.” When Jesus said that we should hate our life in this world, he wasn’t suggesting that we should make our lives miserable, and that, somehow, we would be better people if we were miserable. Jesus wasn’t saying that. He was exaggerating to make a point, the point being that we can become attached to the things of this world to such an extent that we neglect or lose interest in the really important things. The “things of this world” include material possessions, wealth, power and status. Ave had all of those. Did it make him a bad person that he had, and enjoyed, snowmobiles, boats, go-karts, and an electric car that did 0-100 km/hr in less than three seconds? Of course not. Can you imaging your dad getting off a snowmobile and saying: “Now I feel complete?” Obviously not.

We are called to love God and love our neighbour. Ave vocalized his love for God when he spoke about his first communion, and showed his love for God countless times when he insisted that you come with him to Sunday Mass. Toys are toys, but God is God. And I don’t think Ave was confused about that – at all.

When we speak about love of neighbour, we typically talk about sharing our time, talents, and treasures. And the extent to which we do that is a clear indication of whether our first love is for God or for the things of this world. And here again, Ave demonstrated his love for God by serving his neighbour. I was always amazed that despite his many family and work-related obligations, he had the time – or, more correctly – made the time to lend his talents to various committees and worthwhile causes. He had a real talent for that and he put his talent at the service of others. And, of course, he was also generous in sharing his treasures. There is a school in rural Nepal that would not have been built were it not for the generous support of Ave and your mother. And this is only one of many examples of his generosity.

I am happy to be able to talk to you, his children, about these things. You’ve grown up in a privileged environment as a result of the hard work and sacrifices of your parents. At a time like this, when we recall your dad’s life, it’s important to remember the things that were most important to him: the love of God, family, and neighbour.

Kids, your dad, Priscilla, your husband, was a remarkable man. Have faith that he rests with the Lord, have trust that he will never be far from you, and imitate him in sharing love generously.

-Deacon Pat Hessel
Shared by Dionne Spratt on May 29, 2021
I remember arm wrestling with dad, we’d think we would win and he’d fake us out and crush it (obviously). I remember when we’d play roller coaster in mom and dads bed where we’d latch onto his giant leg and he’d swing us around. I remember his favourite feather pillow. I remember his extremely salty fried eggs which seemed to be the only thing he cooked. I remember his try hard French accent, I remember how excited I would get to go back to school shopping with him, Laurenne and Carleen. I remember NASCAR every Sunday, I remember him chugging milk from the jug and drinking salsa like a champ.

Words cannot express how much I miss him, he was the coolest dude.
He’s gonna have unlimited NASCAR and Chinese food in heaven