Olga Stefaniuk

Obituary
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  • "I have just finished reading Olga's wonderful book. What an..."
    - Jacqueline Gore
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    - Elaine Nystrom
  • "The Popik Family,'Your mother was a wonderful person.She..."
    - Ann Colgan
  • - Janet Thomson
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    - Marge Woitas
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Olga Stefaniuk 1943 2010 It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of our dear mother, grandmother, wife, sister, and friend Olga Marian Stefaniuk (nee Popik) on Monday, May 17, 2010. She is survived by her husband, Orest; daughters, Kimberley (Daryl), and Nicole (Cam); grandsons, Jared and Sean; brother, Barney (Angie); sisters, Verna (Lorne) and Iris (Bob); nieces, Cindy, Raynelle and Kaylee; nephews, Darryl (Cheryl), Kevin, Trevor (Jerris), Michael and Curtis; and her special aunties, Anne Oshynko, Olga Popik and Frances Bulych. She was predeceased by her parents, Mike H. Popik (1975) and Mary Popik (2005). Born on July 3, 1943 and raised in Hubbard, SK, Olga shared many fond memories working in Popik's General Store, which her parents owned. Upon completion of high school, she graduated with honours from a Secretarial Course at Saskatoon Business College and joined the law firm of Francis, Gauley & Hughes, which she enjoyed for a number of years. The light Olga brought to this world will be sorely missed. First diagnosed with breast cancer in 1986, she used her experiences to help others facing the same journey. She, along with two friends, Marie Thiesson and Lilah Brehon, brought the Retreats for Women Facing Cancer to Saskatoon, and founded the HOPE Cancer Help Centre Inc. For their achievements, the ladies were awarded the YWCA Women of Distinction Award and the Saskatoon Community Service Village Builders Award. Olga also chaired the organizing committee for the Retreats for Women Facing Cancer, made regular visits to cancer patients, brought flowers to those receiving chemotherapy, and counseled anyone who needed to hear her never-tiring message of hope. She recently started a support group for women with metastatic disease. Olga has touched the lives of countless people; she could turn a stranger into a friend in an instant. Even while her disease progressed, she met her challenges with a smile and never stopped giving. She volunteered for many organizations, including the U. of S. Ballroom Dance Club, the UCWLC at her church, and cancer groups and conferences. She was part of Bosom Buddies, the Dragon Boat races, and a tireless advocate for the importance of hope. She felt privileged to have the opportunity to spread her message, speaking to audiences of pharmacists, doctors, patients, employee groups, church groups, and medical students at the University of Saskatchewan. Her autobiography, A Rose Grows: fighting cancer, finding me, was launched last year and shortlisted for the Reader's Choice category of the Sask. Book Awards. Our family wishes to sincerely thank all the caregivers and friends that helped Olga along her journey, especially the staff of Saskatoon Cancer Centre, Olga's dance family, her WestJet family, and her angel network. Prayers for Olga will be held on Thursday, May 20, 2010 at 7:00 p.m. Divine Liturgy will be celebrated on Friday, May 21, 2010 at 10:00 a.m. Both services will be held at Sts. Peter and Paul Ukrainian Catholic Church (10th Street and Munroe Avenue, Saskatoon, SK) with celebrants Rev. Fr. Frank Szadiak, C.Ss.R. and Reverend Fr. Ivan Nahachewsky. Interment will follow in Woodlawn Catholic Cemetery. In lieu of floral tributes, donations may be made in Olga's memory to Saskatoon Cancer Centre, 20 Campus Drive, Saskatoon, SK S7N 4H4. To send online condolences to the family, visit www.parkfuneral.ca . Arrangements entrusted to Greg Lalach of PARK FUNERAL CHAPEL, 306.244
Published in The Leader-Post from May 19 to May 20, 2010
bullet Breast Cancer
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