Virginia Mary Dobrowolski (nee Borsato)
January 12, 1923 (Riese Pio X, Italy) ~ September 26, 2022 (Calgary, Alberta)
Mary Dobrowolski passed away peacefully on September 26, 2022, at the age of 99 years after a life well lived. She will be lovingly remembered by her two surviving siblings, her four children and six grandchildren along with their respective spouses, as well as all of her extended family and friends. She took great joy in getting to know her eight great-grandchildren.
Mary was born in a large family farmhouse just outside of a town near Treviso, Italy. She came to Canada at the age of 16 months. She spent her formative years in the isolated town of Ocean Falls, BC, and then the mining community of Trail, BC. As the eldest child, she went to work in the family business when she was thirteen years old.
Mary moved away from home to work in Vancouver, where her family eventually followed. She met Peter, her man in Air Force uniform in 1945 when he was on leave in Vancouver from his posting on the Queen Charlotte Islands. They were married in Vancouver in 1946. Peter then took her away to the hinterlands; first to Penticton, and then to a small farm outside of Dunster, BC, where they initially raised their young family of four with no running water or electrical power. She recently recalled Buster and Dan, the farm’s workhorses.
As Peter was the rolling stone and pursued various ventures and careers in central BC in the ensuing years, Mary was the solid foundation that underpinned the family. Outwardly calm and quiet, she had a firm belief in fairness and tolerance. She was a strong support for various people in the challenges they faced. Ever self-effacing, her family, friends, and faith were the center of her life, and she tried to instill those values in her children and others around her. She was forever proud of the achievements of those close to her. Her belief in education, strongly supported by her husband, resulted in her children all going on to obtain university degrees. Subsequent generations then became teachers and individuals with yet more advanced degrees.
Peter, who passed away in 2009, was always amazed at his luck in finding Mary and has now found the love of his life again. An amazing lady, and loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, and friend, she will be missed.
The family wishes to extend its thanks to the staff of The Manor Village Garrison Woods for their care for Mary, and assistance through this difficult time.
Funeral Mass details to follow.
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