Grant James PLANK

1957 - 2020
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Grant James Plank
Born – Windsor, Ontario November 3, 1957
Died – Woodstock, Ontario October 23, 2020

Dark skies, looming trees, darting bats, the flicker of a fire and the comfort of familiar tunes emanating from the workshop. That was Grant’s happy place. It was here he spent many contented evenings at the farm, reflecting on family, friends, love, and hard work. The soundtrack of life.

We all fit in to Grant’s tracks somewhere. The Mom and Dad, wife, siblings, daughters, friends, co-workers and more. Of course, Grant was musical from the start – his violin studies – his flair with the saxophone, and then the real dawning of music appreciation when he purchased a high-end stereo and Elton John’s Goodbye Yellow Brick Road – the first. This was played on loop, then Cat Stevens, some Beatles, then the milk cartons filled up.

If music was the background, then a motorized engine, the mode. It all began with a homemade minibike made from a lawnmower engine and a bike frame at 10 years and rose quickly via a restored Sunbeam Alpine found abandoned in a farmer’s field, lovingly restored with his Mom helping him restore fresh leather seats, a beautifully carved wooden gear shift. There are many great memories of him in that first ride - it had a great stereo, he wore a tweed flat cap, the top was down, and he blasted the music as he screeched into the high school parking lot. And from there came many more projects, the T-Bird, an Austin Healy 3000, A Shelby and the Jag. Restoring cars was a real love for Grant. He always was one to take a project from start to finish – the joy was in the restoration, not the finished product.

This was Grants framework for life, he never backed down from a project. The more challenging the better. Be it restoring cars, repairing the farming equipment and problem solving the many tasks he encountered. He enjoyed tinkering at the farm, spending time on his tractors and was an immaculate grounds keeper. His vision was to create an equestrian centre, that was his wife’s passion. He brought his professionalism and integrity into every aspect of the business. He added his own charming character to the ambiance of the farm and his stamp is everywhere. He was the key to the way the Sprucehaven Farm (Mt. Elgin, Ontario) was developed, cultured and maintained.

This held true in his professional life as well. He was a Manager and a much-appreciated mentor to many in the automotive industry. Grant retired just four years ago from GM CAMI Assembly after a long and dedicated career, which included manufacturing leadership, process & product development and business interaction with Suzuki Motor Corp. in Japan. A fellow colleague of Grant’s stated " Grant spent a great deal of his personal time advocating for his peers – a situation where he truly stepped out and stood up – taking personal risk to ensure the rights of others. Through Grant's qualities of perseverance and dedication to a cause, his fellow CAMI retirees will remember his personal efforts for many years to come."

Grant’s most precious investment in life was his family – his lovely wife Linda with whom he created the beautiful Sprucehaven Farm. His children – Nicole (Matt Riddick) and Kimberley (Eddie Conte), and his cherished six Grandchildren, Camilla, Holly, Easton, Nina, Lucca and Ella. He had a strong loving foundation thanks to his Mother (Mildred Plank) and Father (Jim Plank). Mildred gifted Grant with her determined creativity and natural music ability. James provided him with a strong love of language, books and high propriety. His eldest sister Cynthia (Morris), sadly passed 10 years ago – they were very close and she would have been the strong glue for the family during this difficult time. And of course, Grant’s interesting, lively diversions - his younger sisters – Jennifer (Plank) and Amy (Robinson), and his little brother JJ (Big Brothers of Canada). There are many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends, all across the country who will miss this guy. Also, his love for all the dogs that were part of the family and the farm was unwavering.

Grant loved a good trip – by car, truck or transport. This time he’s launched on his own – 10 days before his 63rd birthday, to join those passed before. His short preparation time (25 days), provided some of us time to share our love with him, and to just be with him. Words cannot describe how truly missed Grant will be by his family and friends. For those who knew and loved Grant, our hearts are truly broken now, but we hope our grief will be comforted with the memories. A sincere thank you to Dr Pariser, Dr. Mosey, Dr Fryer, the Care Partners Palliative Care Team and the Woodstock Palliative Nursing staff for their passionate care.

Arrangements entrusted to the McBeath-Dynes Funeral Home (519-425-1600) Ingersoll, Ontario. If desired donations to VON/Sakura House would be appreciated by the family.

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25 trees have been planted in memory of Grant James PLANK

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3 trees were planted in the memory of Grant PLANK

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John Pavey

Posted at 06:05am
With thoughts of peace and courage for you,

3 trees were planted in the memory of Grant PLANK

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Trudy and Cindy Atrens

Posted at 07:53pm
With loving memories of Grant Plank, you are in our thoughts, sending you lots of love and hugs. Love from everyone at Stone Broke Stables.

3 trees were planted in the memory of Grant PLANK

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Philip Williams

Posted at 09:45am
What a great man, so thoughtful, respectful and giving to others. Grant will be surely missed by all. Take care my friend...
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John Skea

Posted at 03:52pm
I had the privilege of knowing Grant for close to 20 years through work. He was an inspiring individual who always led by example and always encouraged others to be their best. My sympathies for your loss.

John Skea

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