Surrounded by her loving family, Mary Kostur, devoted wife, beloved mother and grandmother passed away peacefully on July 27, 2019 at the age of 74 at the Dauphin Regional Health Centre.
Mary was loved and will be forever remembered by her husband of 53 years Harry Kostur, her seven children, Richard (Christine) Kostur, Glen (Marnie) Kostur, Patricia (Brent) Negrich, Michele (Jason) Gulenchin, Brian Kostur (girlfriend, Wendy McDonald), Barbara (Michael) Zalischuk, and Darlene (Kevin) Popowich; fifteen grandchildren: Jenessa, Courtney, Ryan, Kristen, Eric, Clint, Faith, Kaylene, Troy, Kyle, Allie, Ethan, Aiden, Brayden, and Ava. She will also be lovingly remembered by her sisters, brothers, numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and many dear neighbors and friends.
She was predeceased by her parents, George and Florence; and brothers, John and Fred; and her baby sister, Gloria.
Mom was born April 18, 1945 in Wadena, Saskatchewan, the fifth of fifteen children born to George and Florence Widenmaier. She had ten brothers: Fred, John, Melvin, Rudy, Ronald, Albert, Allan, Herman, Gordon, Stanley and four sisters, Margaret, Doris, Violet and Gloria.
Her family moved from Invermay, Saskatchewan to a homestead north of Ashville, Manitoba in the early 1950s. She received her education attending the Comrie School, worked on the family farm, tended to her younger siblings and babysat for neighboring families. In her single days, she worked at the Kings Hotel and the Grange Cafe in Dauphin. In 1964, she met her "sweetie" Harry and were married the following year on October 9th, 1965. Together, they saved and worked hard to build a new home in 1974 to raise their seven children. Side by side they farmed for over fifty years where Mom was integral to the farm operation. She shoveled grain, loaded and drove grain trucks, delivered meals and happily filled in where needed right up until her illness prevented her active role. Mom loved music, especially ukrainian and country songs. Every year Mom and Dad attended Dauphin's National Ukrainian Festival and Dauphin's Countryfest. She loved to dance and often could be seen swaying to the music while working in the kitchen. They never missed the opportunity to attend a function where there would be dancing such as the Zoria Frolic or the Dauphin Street Fair. Mom was a natural homemaker who excelled at cooking and baking. She took the time to make bread, perogies and cabbage rolls. During the holidays, she loved to braid and decorate traditional ukrainian breads - a trait she later passed down to her daughters. She loved making desserts which was a staple at every meal. Her cherry and maple walnut chiffon cakes which she made annually for the Zoria praznyk were a favorite by many. Mom loved cooking with homegrown vegetables from two huge gardens. She took pride ensuring she had a weed-free garden and even adorned it with a border of Gladiolas which was one of her favorite flowers. Mom and Dad also planted an orchard and every year she made a variety of jams and jellies from the orchard fruit. She enjoyed picking morelles, wild saskatoons and Kalyna from the nearby bushes and always made sure the cold room was stocked with dozens of quarts of jam for winter. Mom was the most kind, humble and selfless woman and always put everyone's needs before her own. She was always the first in the kitchen and always the last to eat, but never complained. She was soft spoken and had a quiet, calm demeanor yet she loved to talk and always made everyone around her feel welcomed. Mom raised three boys who loved hockey and throughout her life, she was so proud and supportive of their love of the game. Together with Harry, they travelled everywhere throughout Manitoba and across other provinces to watch her sons play hockey and later would watch her grandsons play. Whether in the arena or watching T.V. Mom could be found in the crowd cheering for the team. Mom was very proud of all her daughters and had a very special bond with each of them. Mom loved babies and always wanted twins and when Barbara and Darlene were born 1 year apart, Mom often dressed them the same. People often mistook them for twins which made Mom glow with joy. Mom stressed the importance of respect and manners to all of her children and passed down a legacy of values: devotion to family, perseverance to work hard, gardening skills, cooking and homemaking skills and many precious recipes. In 2015, Mom moved to St. Paul's Nursing Home and was brought to weekly chapel liturgies by Pastoral Care. Her disease progressed significantly the last year but came to its final stages on July 13th when she was admitted to Palliative Care Unit and succumbed to her illness into the arms of our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Throughout Mom's illness, her children were dedicated to caring for her, visiting her and during her final days, remained by her side. Mom would have been especially proud to have her daughter, Darlene using her nursing skills to lead her palliative care.
Thank you to all the staff at St. Paul's Nursing Home who cared for Mom in the past four years after a long battle with dementia. A special thank you to Dr. Trina Mathison and Dr. Leo Lopez-Gardner and the staff of the palliative care unit for their superior level of care for Mom and support shown to all of our family.
In lieu of flowers, donations can made to the Alzheimer's Society of Manitoba, St. Paul's Nursing Home or the Palliative Care Unit at the Dauphin Regional Health Centre.
Prayers were offered on Wednesday, July 31, 2019 at 7:00 pm with Rosary at 6:30 pm from the Ukrainian Catholic Church of the Resurrection in Dauphin.
A Funeral Liturgy was held for Mary on Thursday, August 1, 2019 at 10:00 am from the Ukrainian Catholic Church of the Resurrection in Dauphin with Very Rev. Father Oleg Bodnarski officiating.
Interment followed in the Riverside Cemetery.