Les was born Feb. 9, 1932, at the family home in the New Finland colony. He was the sixth child born to Gus and Elsie (Peterson) Maki. Finnish was his first language until he attended school at New Finland country school. He completed grade 8 at the school and grades 9 and 10 by correspondence. Education was very important to Les and he contributed to his younger siblings’ post-secondary education. Les’s family was a priority for him and he was close with all of his siblings. They thoroughly enjoyed spending time together and would attend community dances spending the night up on the dance floor.
At a young age Les joined his older brothers in operating the family farm. After leaving school he also worked locally building grain elevators. In his early 20s he worked on oil rigs in the Rocanville and Carievale areas.
When his siblings were attending high school in Whitewood, Les met Margaret King. They married in Langbank on May 16, 1959. They settled in the New Finland colony in the early 60s and began a mixed farming operation with his brother Brian. Les and Margaret had six children: Kathy, Melody, Clint, Rod, Lori and Penny. He was extremely proud of his children’s education achievements and becoming professionals in their chosen fields.
Les was always community minded and felt it was his civic responsibility to serve by being a church elder, Sunday School teacher, elected councillor for the RM of Willowdale, and sitting on the board of the Whitewood Co-operative and the Credit Union.
Les had varied interests from sports to politics. He enjoyed playing softball at the annual New Finland summer picnic, horseshoes with his brothers, five pin bowling with his teenage children and later at the seniors’ club. He proudly watched his sons play hockey and daughters play softball. Les was an armchair coach when watching the Edmonton Eskimos, the Dallas Cowboys, Detroit Red Wings or games Bobby Orr played. Everyone in the house knew exactly how his teams were playing.
He continued to farm and live in the New Finland area until at the age of 74, in the fall of 2006 he retired from farming and moved to Moosomin.
Les and Margaret settled into the community even though it was a big change from farm life. He got involved with the board of the Seniors’ Club and was a regular on coffee row.
In the last five years Les fought hard to overcome a cancer diagnosis. After a short time in Palliative Care at Moosomin Hospital, at the age of 91, he left his family to meet his Lord and Saviour.
Leslie is predeceased by: his parents; his siblings, Julia, Harry, Selma, Arnold, Lorna, Helen, Audrey, Brian and Richard.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 64 years, Margaret; children: Kathy (Barry), Melody (Doug), Clint, Rod (Mika), Lori (Mike), Penny (Jay); grandchildren: Chelsie (Chad), Taylor (Aly), Kendra (Nolan), Karli (Allan), Chase, Mei, Leslee, Jennifer (Ryan), Cassidy (Peter), Jackson, Saarah; great-grandchildren: Everly, Bennett, Annabelle, Colton, Thea, Theoren, Tavea, Estelle, Helen, Aubree,
Finley, Freya, Sophia and Poppy; brother, Garth (Arlene); as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
If friends wish to make a donation in Leslie’s memory, the family asks that they be made to the CT Scan Fund at South East Integrated Care Centre.

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