Helen Gregorash died peacefully in her sleep Jan 31st in her 91st year.
Born Oct 23, 1928 in Guernsey, Saskatchewan to Irene (Konawalyk) and Lazor Solnenko who immigrated from the Ukraine around 1911.
Married for 64 years to Dave Gregorash on Oct 23, 1948, (who worked for the Customs and Excise Department). Dave passed away Oct 6, 2012.
Had 2 children:
Daughter, Dr Donna Green born June 11,1951 married to Dr Jeffrey Green (who have 4 children),
Jacqueline Green, investment banker, with Adam Sherriff-Scott, senior VP Industrial and their son Gabriel born Sept, 2017.
Dr Ian Green physician in Kelowna, BC, wife Samantha, physiotherapist
Dr Elizabeth Green, dentist
Alex Green, electrical engineer
Son, David Allen Gregorash (has 3 children), partner is Margarida
Michael Gregorash, train engineer, wife Camille, horse breeder, their sons, Kai and Brody, Innisfill
Sara Garrigan, marketing director of adult care, husband Peter, managing director of industrial development, of Toronto and their daughter Charlotte
Sean Gregorash, restaurant manager and wife Kayla registered nurse for the deaf, from Barrie.
Predeceased by her brothers,
Victor (1925-1940), a very talented young man who played violin but died of appendicitis
Peter (1926-1956), disabled
Walter (1933- 2003) lived in Toronto and had 4 children, Richard wife Carol, Elizabeth, Derek wife Elsie, Caroline.
Survived by sister in law- Jane Solonenko of Oakville (wife of brother Walter).
Helen had a close relationship with her husband Dave Gregorash's family
She is survived by Dave's brothers Al (Sigrid), Mike (and the late Susie), George (Bernice), Predeceased by his brothers Andy (and the late Ann), Survived by Dave's sisters Irene (and the late Steve) and Elsie (Vince) Ruholl and predeceased by Dave's sister Marie (and the late Peter) Kaleta.
Helen was vivacious, determined, energetic, social and dedicated to her family.
Helen was born in 1928 in Guernsey, Saskatchewan which is right on the northern arm of the TransCanada Highway #16 that goes through Saskatoon. The family then farmed in Weekes from 1936-1941. When her eldest brother died from appendicitis the family moved to Windsor, Ontario to their uncle, John Konawalyk (her mothers brother). However, Lazor couldn't find work in that area so Lazor joined the army in 1941 with the Canadian Home Guards as a cook and he was then transferred from Windsor to Gravenhurst where he worked in the officer's mess in the prisoner of war camp.
At the end of the war they moved to Toronto for a short time before settling in Niagara-on-the-lake. In 1947 Helen met Dave at a ballroom dance class. She walked up to this handsome man who looked like Victor mature and asked him to dance for the ladies dance. The rest was history. They married in October 1948, when Helen was 20 years old.
Their family blossomed when in 1951 they had a daughter Donna Marie and in 1953 a son David Allen. Helen and Dave worked together at the Gregorash Food Market from 1948 to 1954 in St Catharines. In 1955, looking for a more steady income, Dave moved the family to Fort Erie and joined the Canada Customs working on the Peace Bridge that goes to Buffalo. The family then moved to Toronto in 1960 when Dave took a job with Special Excise collecting excise tax from distilleries, breweries and cigarette factories. In 1961 they bought a home at 99 West Deane park Drive where they lived the rest of their days.
Helen worked as a bank teller for a few years and then as a book keeper for Bittner Meats and Delicatessen in Etobicoke to provide extra money for their children's education and activities. She dedicated her life to her family. Helen and Dave frequently spent their summer holidays travelling across Canada and the U.S. to spend time with their extended family. Both before and after retirement, Helen relished the role of grandmother to her 7 grandchildren and was very much involved in their upbringing and played a major role in their lives.
Dave and Helen went to every Ukrainian church in Toronto but when they attended St Demetrius church, there was a welcoming committee and they felt like they had come home surrounded by friendly people.Helen was active in the church women's league, bowling league and helping with fashion shows.
After retirement, Helen had to have an artificial heart valve placed because of the heart damage caused by rheumatic fever when she was younger. Later in life she suffered a number of small strokes which left her physically disabled. But her spirit was good and she still enjoyed her family and visits from friends.
She was a Founding member of St Demetrius Church, 135 La Rose Avenue, Etobicoke where she would like donations made. Donations to Dorothy Ley Hospice would also be appreciated.
Resting at NEWEDIUK FUNERAL HOME, KIPLING CHAPEL, 2058 Kipling Avenue (north of Rexdale Boulevard) from Wednesday, February 20, 2019 from 2 to 4 and 6 to 9 p.m. Panakhyda Wednesday 7:30 p.m. Divine Liturgy will be celebrated at St. Demetrius Ukrainian Catholic Church, 135 La Rose Avenue, Toronto, on Thursday, February 21, 2019 at 10 a.m. Reception to follow at the Mandarin Restaurant, 1255 The Queensway.
As expressions of sympathy, donations to St. Demetrius Ukrainian Catholic Church or Dorothy Ley Hospice https://www.dlhospice.org/memorial-giving. Online condolences at newediukfuneralhome.com