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Born: Jul 07, 1920

Date of Passing: Sep 13, 2009

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JEAN NAOMI DEMIANYK (nee BURNELL) With great sadness, we announce the passing of a wonderful and cherished mother and grandmother on Sunday, September 13, 2009 at Victoria General Hospital, Jean Naomi Demianyk, aged 89. Mom was predeceased by parents Colin and Sarah, brother Harry, stepmother Francis, husband Jim, brother-in-law Donald, and mother-in-law Nellie. Surviving are son, Colin and daughter-in-law Carole, grandchildren Alexandrea and Bryan; cousins Colin McKeachnie, Chester Munday and families; sisters-in-law Kay Demianyk, Barbara Millward and husband Fred; niece Donna, nephews John, Donald Jr., Richard and their families. Born near Ninga, MB on July 7, 1920 and growing up on Willowbrake Farm in Oakville, MB, she attended local grade school and enjoyed rural life riding her horse, Bonnie. She attended the University of Manitoba receiving a B.Sc. in Home Economics in 1944. Upon her graduation, she began her work career as a home economist with the Family Bureau of Greater Winnipeg. In 1951 she left for McGill University to pursue a M.Sc. in Social Work, completed in 1953. During this time, Mom worked as a placement student and then for a short period as a full time employee with the Children's Service Centre in Montreal, where she was swept off her feet by a handsome, young soldier named Jim. They returned to Winnipeg, married in 1954 and started a family with the arrival of Colin in 1956. Mom continued working for the Family Bureau until her retirement as an intake supervisor in 1976. Mom and Dad resided on Parkville Drive in St. Vital from 1958, and with Dad's passing in 1993 Mom continued to enjoy her yard and love of flowers and gardening until fall of 2008. She then moved to The Landing at Riverwood Square on Pembina Hwy., which she thought provided a more comfortable and stimulating lifestyle. Mom was always a warm, positive person who could easily talk to anyone she came across; she enjoyed in-depth conversations and could support or debate an opinion with a firm but calm demeanor. She took a genuine interest in other people's lives and their concerns. Mom would find the best in any situation, was always ready with encouragement and never critical. She loved nature and the outdoors, especially spending summers at the cottage near Kenora, ON; and enjoyed memorable trips to Hawaii, the Arizona desert, and an Alaskan cruise. Conservation and environmental issues were peak interests of hers; she was actively involved in provincial and federal politics with concerns for the well-being of less fortunate Canadians, protection of our culture, sovereignty, and natural resources; her generosity was well known through her support for numerous charities and causes. Mom was indeed special and will be profoundly missed. In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, The Arthritis Society, Canadian Mental Health Association, or the Canadian National Institute for the Blind. A private interment will precede a Celebration of Mom's Life (lunch and refreshments) to be held at Chapel Lawn Memorial Gardens, 4000 Portage Ave., Friday September 18, 2009 at 1:00 p.m. Rest in Peace Mom, We Love You!

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Sep 16, 2009

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