The Fort la Reine Museum regretfully announces the peaceful passing of its dearly respected Board Member, Gilbert Vust on Saturday, September 3, 2016 following complications from a severe head injury. A member of the Fort la Reine Museum Board of Directors since 2003, Gilbert was an active museum contributor, an extremely dedicated director, and friend.

Gilbert was born to Henry and Grace Vust on February 9, 1937 in Elgin Township near Little Rock, Iowa. The seventh of 12 children, he moved to rural Portage with his parents and siblings in 1947.

Gilbert showed an early interest in farming and began working full-time with his father and brothers on the family farm as soon as he left school, becoming a partner in Vust Brothers Allis-Chalmers Dealership in 1958. When Vust limited was incorporated in 1966, he became one of its shareholders, working in the farming enterprises and serving as secretary-treasurer for as long as the company was in business. Upon his retirement in 1996, he pursued his passion for restoring farm equipment, mostly Allis-Chalmers, and was an active member of the Allis-Chalmers enthusiast community attending shows around the world and forging deep friendships.

In December 2002, he was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Medal for his community service to the Fort La Reine Museum. In 2004, Gilbert co-ordinated the annual, international event known as the Gathering of the Orange at the Fort la Reine Museum, attracting A-C collectors and fans from all over the world.

Gilbert was an active community member, and served on boards of the Delta Agricultural Conservation Co-op, numerous agricultural conservation efforts, the Community Foundation of Portage & District, Manitoba Pool Elevators, and remained on the Fort la Reine Museum Board of Directors since 2003.

Gilbert was an active member of the Bible Baptist Church in Portage la Prairie, and served in many capacities. He is survived by four brothers: Alvin (Jenny), Merle, Roy (Darlene), all of Portage and Frank (Ruth) of Winnipeg; also by five sisters: Selma Vust, Freda Moman, Joyce Vust and Alice Vust, all of Portage and Lois McCormick (Jack) of Grand Forks, ND., as well as by numerous nieces and nephews and their families.

Visitation will be held on Thursday, September 8, 2016 at McKenzies Portage Funeral Chapel from 7:00 to 8:00 pm. A Memorial Service will be held on Friday, September 9, 2016 at the MNP Exhibition Building at 2:00 pm. A private family interment will be held prior to the service at Evergreen Memorial Gardens.

The Fort la Reine Museum has lost a respected and dedicated director, and the principal curator and collector of it’s Allis-Chalmers agricultural equipment collection. The Museum community has truly lost one of its most dedicated and finest agricultural contributors and restoration experts.

Anyone touched by Gilbert, understood that he had an incredible wit, a deep dedication to his passions as a collector, an ingenious mind and a great aptitude for mechanics. We've chosen a few images here in remembrance of Gilbert working with the Fort la Reine Museum and the Manitoba Agricultural Museum doing what he loved.

His absence will be greatly felt. 
~ Tracey Turner, Executive Director, Fort la Reine Museum

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