Antique Vintage 15

Yves (Mike) Michel Charles Marie-Joseph Maurette

August 1, 1926 ~ November 30, 2023 (age 97) 97 Years Old

Yves (Mike) Maurette Obituary

Contrary to his protestations of NOT being ill, Yves Michel Charles Marie-Joseph Maurette (Mike), 97 passed away peacefully with his family by his side on November 30, 2023, and was reunited with his loving wife of 61 years, Shirley, who preceded him in death earlier this year. Mike was the 7th of eleven children, born to the late Joseph Dominique Maurette and Bernadette de Gouberville in Le Grais, Orne, France, on August 1, 1926.

Mike pursued a life of service and adventure, doing and seeing more in one lifetime than most in ten. He was living testimony to the statement, “Hard times create strong men…”. At the young age of 17, during the WWII German Occupation of France, he surreptitiously left for England on a fishing boat to enlist with the Allied forces. After airborne training with the British, he returned to France in a glider on D-Day. Months after the invasion, he served as a combat engineer with the French 2nd Armoured Division for the remainder of the War in Europe. With this unit, he was one of the first to enter Hitler’s “Eagle’s Nest” in Berchtesgaden, Germany. Following victory in Europe, he ‘voluntarily’ deployed with the French Far East Expeditionary Corp to fight in French Indochina from 1945-46.

Upon completion of his military service, he returned to France and began a career in aviation, flying for several French companies throughout Europe and Africa, and later doing contract photo reconnaissance flying in the Near East for a government agency. Subsequent employment with Bechtel brought him to North America in the 50’s, where he transitioned from aviation to work in the oil and gas industry. He went on to obtain his degree in engineering, which would become his passion and life’s work. Mike’s work with National Bulk Carriers, Kaiser Coal, and Santa Fe Engineering took him all over the world, from the U.S. to Europe, the Middle East, and western Canada. Mike had always connected with the “American spirit”, and it was while working in the U.S. that he proudly obtained his U.S. citizenship. From surveying to project management, Mike loved it all and gave his very best to every job. He worked well into his seventies, and except for a brief stint in Mexico (accompanied by his wife), he focused mainly on consulting work from his home office in his advanced years—except for that one job he took on an oil platform in the Sakhalin Oblast region of Russia when he was 72 years old.

It was when Mike was working in Calgary that he met the love of his life, Shirley Laybourne. Enamored with her beauty and wit, they married on October 6, 1961 after only a 3 month courtship. With her as his partner, he ventured through the joys and travails of marriage and fatherhood, raising four children together, all the while advancing in his professional development. They moved a lot throughout Mike’s career, and as they worked through the challenges of transition, they enjoyed the adventures of the travel and kept close as a family. Ultimately, they would settle in Calgary in 1979 and go on to enjoy the rewards that come with children and grandchildren. Always, they remained ardently devoted to each other, and Shirley’s love and companionship would prove to be his greatest blessing.

His devout faith as a Roman Catholic informed his eternal optimism in life and in those for whom he cared. For Mike, faith equated action, and he expressed his in prayer and service. He often attended daily mass and rosary service. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus, and assisted his parish wherever he saw a need, including changing out the candles and driving the elderly to and from Mass. He served his community through many winters as a night watchman at his church’s shelter for Inn from the Cold, and as a Salvation Army bell ringer at Christmas.

Mike always remained at the ready. Many were the recipients of his aid and counsel, from the charity he gave the homeless to the practical advice and guidance imparted to family and friends. Never did he wait for someone else to step up; always, and without hesitation, he was the first to come forward. No undertaking was too big or too small.

Mike was a voracious reader and bibliophile, as attested to his cherished, amassed collection of books on a broad range of subjects, and to which his family attributed his prodigious knowledge, numerous ideas, and his ability to speak at length on a variety of topics.

His family, friends, and colleagues knew Mike to be as resolute as he was obstinate; as caring and generous as he was stern; and as much of an optimist as he was a searcher of problems to solve. He was known for his stories, and he generously related them to any and all who would listen.

Most of all, Mike Maurette was an unceasing dreamer with an unyielding entrepreneurial spirit. To the very end, with his last breath, he was plotting his next grand scheme.

He was a tour de force. He was our “man in the arena.” He will be greatly missed.

Mike was preceded in death by his wife Shirley; his parents Joseph and Bernadette Maurette; his sisters, Marie-Antoinette, Isabelle, and Elysabeth; his brothers, Rene, Andre, Joseph, Christian, Bernard, and Jacques; and, most heartbreakingly, his grandson Noah Maurette. He is survived by his brother, Jean-Claude. He lives on in his surviving children Marie Hélène Maurette, Nicholas (Kristen) Maurette, Liza (Greg) Beck, Andrew (Michele) Maurette, Neil (Christine) Maurette, and grandchildren, Octavia, Marc, Darian, Kennedy, Jacob, Emily, Jude, Devon, Ludmilla, and Natasha; and great-granddaughter Opaline.

A Funeral Mass will be at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church (5340 4 Street SW Calgary, AB) held on Friday, December 8, at 11:00 am. For those who were unable to attend in person a recording of the service can be viewed below.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Mike’s memory to Wounded Warriors Canada, or Wounded Warrior Project

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Yves (Mike) Michel Charles Marie-Joseph Maurette, please visit our floral store.

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Funeral Mass
December 8, 2023

11:00 AM
St. Anthony's Catholic Church
5340-4 Street SW
Calgary, AB T2V 0Z5


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