Memorable Manitobans: Alfred Rea Tucker (1909-1979)
Born at Winnipeg on 7 June 1909, son of Herbert Mason Tucker and Jane Gorman Rea (1875-1968), he was educated at Kelvin High School and McGill University (Montreal), receiving from the latter a BComm Honours degree. In September 1932, he joined the T. Eaton Company, working in the women’s shoe department at the Yonge Street (Toronto) store. In 1938, he returned to Winnipeg with his wife and had settled at 111 Girton Boulevard by 1945. He rose through the ranks at the downtown Eaton store until retirement in June 1966 as Director and Vice-President of the Western Division, being succeeded by Donald Scott McGiverin. His employment was interrupted by service in the Royal Canadian Air Force during the Second World War, where he attained the rank of Pilot Officer.
In 1938, he married Grace Helena Robinson (1920-1949) of Toronto. The couple had two children, Allan Tucker and Gail Tucker. Active in the community, he was Chairman of the Board of Governors for the University of Manitoba (1955-1960), succeeding Victor Sifton. The Alfred Rea Tucker Memorial Scholarship is awarded yearly by the University from his endowment. He was President of the Winnipeg General Hospital from 1952 to 1972. Acknowledged by the Centennial Concert Hall as a builder, he was also an active supporter of The Royal Winnipeg Ballet and the Salvation Army as well as a contributor to The Winnipeg Foundation. He was an active member of the St. Charles Country Club and the Winnipeg Winter Club, while also enjoying many summer, spring and fall weekends at his cabin at Sandy Hook.
He died at Winnipeg on 2 May 1979 and was buried in the St. John’s Cathedral Cemetery.
Birth registration, Manitoba Vital Statistics.
Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 7 May 1979, page 66.
We thank James Arnett for providing additional information used here.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough and Jason Tucker.
Page revised: 15 October 2020