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Born: Jul 29, 1947

Date of Passing: Oct 29, 2021

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July 29, 1947 - October 29, 2021

After suffering for a long time from heart disease, Stan passed away peacefully and without pain at Health Sciences Centre on October 29.
Born amid the turmoil of post-war Europe to Polish Catholic parents, he immigrated with them to Winnipeg as a young child and grew up in the West End, graduating from Daniel Mac and University of Manitoba. He was an electrical engineer by profession and worked in the government fisheries department, in automotive diagnostics, at Probe Industrial Electronics, and later at Guertin Brothers; for a time he ran his own consultation firm, Triple Gem Electronics.
Stan had many interests beyond engineering though - martial artist, scuba diver, search and rescue pilot, photographer, woodworker ... he was one of those people who could build beautiful furniture, as well as computers from scratch and could fix anything that broke, an appliance, a guitar, a furnace or a car, whether it was made of plastic or metal or wood. And he especially loved offering his skills to help others.
But his most passionate and single pointed pursuit lay in spiritual development. He met his main teacher Dakshong Tulku Rinpoche in 1984, a Tibetan refugee who was working at that time as a labourer. Stan persuaded him to teach again, allowing Rinpoche to eventually quit his day job and establish two Tibetan Buddhist meditation centres where he touched the hearts of many Western students, one in Winnipeg and the other in a rural setting outside Lac du Bonnet. Under Rinpoche's guidance Stan completed a three year solitary retreat in the rural centre, Dakshong Gonpa, where he also lived for many years.
Predeceased by his parents, Olga and Tony Nowak, he'll be dearly remembered by sister Elizabeth Nowak-Stoppel of Vancouver (Doug Stoppel) and nieces, Laina and Taryn, former wives, Sherrill and Dorothy, Dorothy's children, Ami Kotler (Jen Plester) and Beth Azore (Esan) and Ami and Jen's children, Bram and Josie, and by friend and colleague Frank Ison, Rinpoche's family Pegee, Kunsang, Tsering and Dondup Samker, and all his Dharma sisters and brothers.
He and his family are much indebted to the entire staff of GA4 who helped care for him during his final months.
Stan's ashes lie at Dakshong Gonpa where they will be buried in a private ceremony at a later date.

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Nov 13, 2021

Condolences & Memories (1 entries)

  • As young boys with Winnipeg Tribune paper routes, Stan and I hung around together and spent a lot of time in his folks’ basement on Alexander, building radios, developing black and white film and re-reading our issues of Skin Diver magazine. When I read about the way Stan’s life unfolded and all of his interests, I thought: “Well, of course”. Sincerest condolences to Elizabeth and all the folks Stan cared about and who cared about him. Rest well, Stan. - Posted by: Rick Inglis (Friend from long ago) on: Nov 13, 2021

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