Paula WOWK

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WOWK, Paula
Paula Irene (Varvil) Wowk passed away peacefully at University Hospital on Friday, April 26, 2013 after a long and difficult struggle with ALS, diagnosed in September, 2011. Paula was born on February 11, 1944 in Fresno, California to Florence and Paul Varvil. Six weeks later she moved to Paragould, Arkansas with her mother, while her father was stationed overseas in the Philippines. She grew up in Paragould, Arkansas, with her sister, Pat, her parents, grandparents, and many aunts, uncles, and cousins. She graduated from Paragould High School in May 1962. One of her fondest memories from high school was band. Strongly supported by her parents, she learned to play flute, and was an active member in her high school marching band, glee club and church choir. After high school, Paula attended Arkansas State College for two years, also playing in her college band. Upon leaving university, she worked for First Federal Savings & Loan, and then M.F. Block and Co. She moved to Leeds, England in September, 1970, where she worked as an administrative assistant for the Chairman of the Department of Economic Studies at Leeds University, and then in the Chemistry Department in London, England. During her years in England, she travelled to many European countries and, in her later years, would often speak of the many sites she had seen and the many enjoyable hours she spent doing brass rubbings in the old churches of England, and at Westminster Abby. Paula moved to Toronto, Ontario around 1974, where she next worked at the University of Toronto. While in Toronto, she met Stanley Allan Hamilton, then on sabbatical from his usual teaching position at the University of Regina. The two moved to Regina, Saskatchewan in 1975, and married in December, 1977. They adopted two children, Jeremy, in 1978 and Tara, in 1981. The family resided in Regina until Stanley's death in 1983. In 1984, Paula married Lorne Jackson. Paula and her two children and Lorne and his two children, Allan and Rena, lived on the farm at Riverhurst, Saskatchewan where Paula served on the Co-op Board, volunteered for her church, the children's school and in the community and trained on weekends to become a registered massage therapist. In the Fall, 1995, Paula moved to Saskatoon, practiced as a massage therapist from her home, volunteered with Working for Women, Palliative Care Unit at St. Paul's Hospital and Victim's Services. She joined the Saskatoon Adult Community Band in 1996, continuing to play both flute and then oboe until prevented by ALS. She met Terrance Wowk in 2000. After living together and moving onto their peaceful and much loved acreage, the two married on July 9, 2005. Soul-mates, they spent their time together, decorating, gardening and landscaping their home in the company of their two Papillion dogs. Paula is survived by her husband, Terrance Wowk, her son, Jeremy Jackson (daughter, Madison and his wife, Megan), her daughter, Tara Hamilton, her step-son, Allan Jackson (daughters, Kayla and Ally), her step-daughter, Rena Park (her husband, John and their daughter, Caitlin), her step- daughter, Joan Dreyer (her daughter, Carly and her partner, Rowan Davison), her step- son, Trevor Wowk (his son, Carlton), her step-son Jason Wowk (his daughter Rylie), her sister, Pat Russell (her husband, Jim), as well as many nieces, nephews and cousins. Her parting comment – "Thoughts become things, so choose the good ones." In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Paula's memory to the ALS Society of Saskatchewan (Box 31028, Normanview Mall, Regina, SK S4R 8R6). A Celebration of Paula's Life will be held on Saturday, May 11, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. at Hillcrest Funeral Home (east on 8th St, first right past Briargate Rd). Online condolences may be sent from Arrangements entrusted to Charmaine Legrand.


Published in The Saskatoon StarPhoenix on May 8, 2013
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