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Clayson  Near

Obituary of Clayson Sandwell Near

NEAR, CLAYSON SANDWELL It is with great sadness we announce that Clay Near, passed away unexpectedly on May 2, 2020, at the age of 71 years. Cremation has taken place. There will be no official service at this time. Clay leaves to mourn his loving wife, Diane (nee Radulski); his stepchildren Robert (Corie, Beth, Josh), Jason (Crista), and Michael (Maureen), siblings Joyce Habermehl, Jean Master, Doug, Ted (Heather), Randy (Wendy), and Lynn Johnston (Ken), and sister in law Joan. Clay's second family on Diane's side include Wendy Contant (Michel), Wes Radulski (Barb), and brother in law Sam Stewart. He will also be missed by his numerous nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends, all of whom he held dear. He is predeceased by his parents Helen (nee Hammond) and Harry, as well as siblings Gary (Rose), John, and Harry. On Diane's side, he is predeceased by Diane's parents Wes and Jeana, and his sister in law Sharon. Clayson Sandwell Near was born in Stratford Ontario on January 13, 1949. He was the 7th of 10 children born to Helen and Harry Near. Clay left Ontario at the age of 17 to settle in Calgary, Alberta. Throughout his early working years, he worked several construction jobs, picking up many skills along the way. He met his future wife Diane in Calgary in 1976. They settled in Beiseker, where he became a manager at P& H Grain Elevators. Clay officially took on the role of husband and father when he and Diane wed in 1978, and they bought their first home together in Airdrie, Alberta. Near's Amusements was born shortly thereafter. When people asked him what he sold, he would always say, “We have a health food concession.” Of course, this consisted of a number of things over the years—from pizza, popcorn and nachos and cheese to candy apples and snow cones! They worked their way across the Prairie provinces, always dragging the kids along the way. Clay was affectionately known by his friends as Carnie Inc. With his entrepreneurial spirit, he was always game to try something new. Clay's love for animals was obvious to anyone who knew him: they always had one or more dogs. In 1989, as empty-nesters, they sold their house, packed up the dogs, and went on the road! Clay loved to drive. They travelled with their motor home all across Canada, U.S.A., and Mexico. During this time, they purchased a property in Redcliff, Alberta. Over the next 3 years, Clay used his construction skills to tear down the old house and build a new one. Clay and Diane were in Redcliff for many years until they purchased their current acreage near Beauvallon, Alberta. Clay rarely sat still. He spent a lot of time doing the things that he enjoyed like RV'ing, chopping wood, and hauling things around the acreage in his golf cart with his beloved dog Stella riding shotgun. When he wasn't outside, he was inside reading, baking, or calling up someone on the phone just to chat. There were many get-togethers at the acreage and many memories made over the years. He started numerous projects that he finished in his time frame only... sometimes taking awhile. He loved meeting people and would strike up a conversation everywhere he went. He would talk to complete strangers like they were his long lost friends. He could brighten anyone's day with a joke or a funny story that he always had ready. This past winter brought them a ton of fun and new friendships at the property they bought in Quartzite, Arizona. Clay, or “Big C” as many called him, could be counted on to come up with a poem for every occasion. He always seemed to find the humour in every situation, and shared his zest for life with anyone who would listen! It is impossible to sum up Clay's colourful life in a few short pages, but if you knew Clay, you know that he was truly one of a kind. He will be dearly missed but never forgotten. Clay would almost certainly be smiling, reading this: Ode to Clay You left us on the second of May, It was too soon for us to part ways. You always made us smile and were quick with a laugh, You made a great team with Diane, your better half. A hot dog for us will never be the same, Until the time we meet again. Love you Big C! The End In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the "SPCA - THE ALBERTA SOCIETY PREVENTION CRUELTY TO ANIMALS." (c/o 17904 - 118 AVENUE - EDMONTON, AB T5S 2W3)
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