WILLIAM (BILL) POLONUK
November 1, 1931 - October 16, 2022
Bill was born in Winnipeg on November 1, 1931 to parents, Dmetro and Anastasia Palahniuk. His mother, Anastasia died in 1932, when he was eleven and a half months old, leaving his father with two small children (sister Mary was a year older) during the Depression. Dmetro struggled to raise them and was soon forced to put the children into the Children’s Home in Winnipeg then onto Knowles School when Bill was ten years old. It was traumatic for Bill but he managed to survive through it and it formed his character. Eventually in 1943, he was returned to his father, who had remarried (Mary Kiliwnik) and then had a normal home life. Bill studied at Norquay School but did not go onto high school. He started playing football and played for the Winnipeg Rods Football team. Bill then began working for the Canada Pacific Rail in May 1952 as a night porter on the trains through western Canada.
He met the love of his life, Mary Romaniuk in the early 1950s and they married on June 26, 1954. Bill and Mary’s first son, Grant followed in 1955, then Wayne in 1958, Alan in 1963 and finally Kevin in 1971.
On November 19, 1958, Bill left the CPR and joined the Federal Post Office where he started as a mail clerk. He realized his lack of education would hamper him so he returned to school for evening classes and completed his high school then later going on to Red River Community College to complete courses in management and marketing. He was promoted to postal officer in 1965, then went to be an instructor for the staff training, a station manager in 1968, and then finally to a manager of sales and marketing for western Canada. He retired from the Post Office on September 30, 1993.
Bill enjoyed being a member of Toastmasters and was great at giving speeches.
Our Dad liked sports. Besides football, he was active in coaching his sons in hockey and baseball as well as curling. He curled for many years in various leagues along with the Post Office where he was a founding member of the Canadian Postal Curling Championships and first Chairman of its committee in 1965. He was elected to the Canadian Postal Curling Hall of Fame in 1981. He enjoyed golfing and was an active member of Transcona Golf and Country Club. Dad and Mom loved to go and watch the Winnipeg Jets and had season tickets for the Manitoba Moose. They also had season tickets for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
Dad and Mom loved to travel and managed to make a stop in every continent including the Arctic and Antarctica. They were always ready to pack up and fly off, hop on a cruise ship, hit the highway in their car and even get on a train to go to Churchill, MB.
Bill and Mary’s family grew by leaps and bounds. Grant (Heather), Wayne (Patti), Alan (Christina) and Kevin (Rhea). Then the grandchildren came, David (Crystal), Corey (Christine), Stacey (Samantha), Matthew, Alanda (Dean), Kaeli (Ken), Tyler and Jessica and soon the great grandchildren came along, Katrina, Kadence, Noah, Damian, Wyatt, Kingston, Charlotte and Greyson. He was always happy when the grandchildren and great grandchildren were around him.
Besides his family, Bill leaves to mourn, his sisters, Mary Glover and Carol Grierson and his nephews Glen Glover (Dianne), Darren and Duane Grierson as well as numerous other family and friends.
In spite of his dementia, Bill still loved seeing his family, watching sports on TV and puzzles. The family wishes to thank the many caregivers at Concordia Place for their kindness and care.
Donations can be made to the Knowles Centre or a charity of your choice.
Bill's family kindly requests that all of his friends and relatives take a few minutes to honour his memory by sharing photos, memories, and stories, using the comment section on this page.
Memories, Stories and Condolences
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