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Born: Aug 20, 1933
Date of Passing: Apr 10, 2021Send Flowers to the Family Offer Condolences or Memory
John Antoniuk was born on August 20, 1933 in East Saint Paul, MB to parents, George and Justyna Antoniuk. His passion for sports led him to competitive football and basketball at St. Paul's High School, and later years of coaching the Westend Rams.
He began his career by apprenticing with his Uncle Peter at the Dufferin Hotel, and later partnered with family members to own and operate many hotels. John's favourite and biggest joy came from operating the Nicolett Inn for over 50 years. He was the founder and president of the Northern Curling Club, the Nicolett Curling Club, the Nicolett Fastball League, the Nicolett Shuffleboard League and the Nicolett Golf Club. He sponsored many sporting teams throughout the years from hockey to dog sledding and everything in between. It was, however, his Nicolett Inn Men's Senior League Basketball team that received national attention when they won the Canadian Championship in 1979, 1980 and 1982. The Nicolett Inn Basketball team returned their thanks and went on to name a racehorse Johnny Nicolett in John's honour.
In 1962 John met and married his true love, Alice Sianchuk, from Dauphin Manitoba. It was love at first sight and they spent 54 years together until she passed in 2016. Their whole marriage was filled with love, fun, friendship, and many beautiful holidays together all over the world.
John Antoniuk was a natural leader who not only saw himself as a people person, but he was most comfortable when lighting up a room and building the excitement with every joke that he told.
John Antoniuk was predeceased by his beloved wife Alice, father George, mother Justyna, brother Bill, and sister Anna. He is survived by his four dear children: Justina McCaffrey, Jo-Ann (David) Borger, William (Ania) and Michael (Dorothy), adored grandchildren: Palestrina, Everett and Verona McCaffrey, Hayleigh, Alisa and David Borger, Grace and Mary-Kate Antoniuk, and great-granddaughter: Piper Addison Foster.
The family would like to express their sincere appreciation to all the staff at Holy Family Home. The extraordinary care and support made our beloved father happy and comfortable. Thank You!
In lieu of flowers, donations in honour of John Antoniuk can be made at Holy Family Home c/o Lubov SSMI Foundation.
In accordance to tradition, a private Christian burial has been held, officiated by Father John Sianchuk.
This obituary can also be viewed at www.cropo.com
"We Love You Dad, rest in peace."
Publish Date: Apr 17, 2021
A come and go viewing will take place at Cropo Funeral Chapel, 1442 Main Street on Thursday, April 15, 2021 from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
A longer obituary will follow in Saturday's newspaper.
Publish Date: Apr 14, 2021
As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Apr 14, 2021, Apr 17, 2021
Condolences & Memories (9 entries)
Justina and Joanne, I used to babysit you! Lived across the street from you all for years. I remember your parents well. Esp the Volkswagon Beetle! I remember your Dad' s robust spirit. Really loved your mom. So sorry on your loss. I live in Guelph, ON, married with 4 sons and one is Everett! I will keep your family in my prayers. - Posted by: Anne Gajerski-Cauley (Re) on: Apr 30, 2021
My deepest and most sincere condolences to the Antoniuk's family. May the soul of John rest in peace. You will be gone from our sight, but never from our hearts. We will miss you big time! - Posted by: cecile (nurse(holy family home)) on: Apr 18, 2021
I remember being 9 or 10 yrs old and going to the Nicolette picnics. Everyone got a ribbon, no one was ever felt left out or not good enough in his races. We had the best of everything, hot dogs, Pic a Pop drink, Pink popcorn and dixie cups. We had candy scrambles were the main attraction, we used to get so many. Thank you Mr. Antoniuk, you have given me some very nice childhood memories. My deepest sympathy to the family. May John and Alice rest in peace. My prayers are with you. Joanne Lambert daughter of a Nicolette curler Gerry Lambert - Posted by: Joanne Lambert (a) on: Apr 18, 2021
In the short 19 months I knew John, he stole a little piece of my heart. His larger than life personality made him hard to miss. I will have beautiful memories of singing with him to Max Bygraves hits, chatting with him and playing our version of chess. It was my pleasure and an absolute privilege to know him. My sincere condolences to his family. He will be missed. - Posted by: Colleen (Recreation Holy Family Home) on: Apr 17, 2021
My deepest condolences to the family. My parents owned a store kitty corner to the Nicolet hotel and so I had dealings with John on many occasions. All our conversations were interesting and he was always interested in knowing how business was. I have fond memories of these interactions. - Posted by: Aurele Teffaine (acquaintance) on: Apr 17, 2021
Fond memories within the Hotel. For instance, John and Mike singing Christmas Carols on stage. We will miss you. Keep the Beer taps flowing John. R.I.P. Tom and Francie. - Posted by: Tom Brereton (Nicolette Curler) on: Apr 17, 2021
My husband Dan and I met your parents on the Lord Selkirk cruise in 1976 when we were celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary. We spent a lot of time with them on the weekend cruise on lake Winnipeg. They were a fabulous couple and we kept in touch for a few years after until we got so wrapped up with our own kids and their sports. I hope my husband Dan is playing the accordion at the pearly gates welcoming your dad! Your parents were the perfect fun loving friends for cruise companions with lots of stories to tell! My condolences to your entire family! - Posted by: Carol De Baets (Friend ) on: Apr 17, 2021
Uncle John was a larger than life character who enjoyed good times with family and friends. He adored his wife, Alice, who he now is reunited with. He will now be shooting the breeze with his brother, Bill, about baseball, soccer, football and anything else to do with sports. And singing again - he had an amazing voice! Rest well, Uncle John. Enjoy this next adventure before you. - Posted by: Patricia Antoniak (Niece) on: Apr 16, 2021
So very sorry for you loss. My thought and prayers go out to you and your family. Luv Alice Taylor - Posted by: Alice Taylor (Friend) on: Apr 14, 2021
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