Pete Sawchuk Obituary
1935 - 2018
Not Peter, just Pete
A man who could bring a smile to anyone, has left us.
Although it saddens us to announce his death, it gives us comfort to know that Pete has been released from his struggle with Alzheimer's. Pete came into this world January 30, 1935 at home on the farm, delivered by his father. At the age of 5 he moved with his parents, Fred and Catherine (both deceased) siblings (late) John (Marylyn), Lena (Wally), Darlene (Mel) to another farm two miles north of Clair. He worked hard on the farm where he learned many tricks of the trade from his Dad. Pete also attended school at Clair where he met Marlene, a classmate who would become his wife. They will mark 61 years married this February. At the age of 16, Pete started leaving the farm during winters to go work at various jobs in Manitoba, B.C. and the Yukon, driving trucks, working at a logging camp and carpentry work. Pete decided he didn't want to farm at all, so he worked various jobs at Sask. Highways, CPR and Domtar and painting grain elevators. In 1959 Pete joined the Saskatoon Fire Department. He loved this job and his coworkers. He was injured on the job and spent 6 months in a hospital bed in his living room, with Marlene as his caregiver. Pete gladly reciprocated caring for Mar in later years. After 6 months, the cast came off and Pete developed his own therapy to strengthen his leg. He rode his old CCM ladies balloon tire bike up to 25 miles a day. This graduated to walking miles and miles daily and he continued the practice until he no longer could. He met all kinds of people and came home with knick knacks from all over the city. He retired from the Fire Department after 35 years of service with the rank of Captain. Pete always felt like he hit the jackpot (his words) with his own family, and their families. He thought the world of Marlene, Kelly, (Helena, Casey W, Josh), Tori (Terry), Molly (Kyle, Landon, Lilly), Ryan (Dylan), Guy (Anna, Tom) and Claire.
Marlene - I will always be so thankful that Pete was the most amazing son-in-law to my parents Hash and Audrey. He felt as close to them as his own parents.
Kelly- When I was a kid I would go up north fishing with my dad and his buddies. There would be some big fish caught, and some even bigger fish stories told! In later years Dad always got skunked when fishing with me in the big Pacific!
Tori - I loved listening to my dad singing and playing any of the many musical instruments he taught himself to play! His love of music influenced us all right down to the great-grandies!
Guy - Dad had a strong work ethic. One winter he dismantled a downtown building. Hauled the lumber home, then hauled it again in the spring up to McPhee Lake to build us a cabin!
Terry - I cherish the trade skills Pete taught me. Also his ability to sift through all the treasures at the Saturday sale!
Claire and Helena - Loved dad's cooking. Pete was an awesome cook. Homemade soups and stroganoff were his specialities!
Pete was overjoyed with the arrival of his first grandchild Casey Rey followed by overwhelming grief upon her death at age 2 and a half. Six more grandchildren followed which he loved unconditionally. He was a ’hands on grandfather changing diapers, babysitting, park duty and bike riding.
Molly - Growing up I spent a lot of time with Papa. Summers at McPhee Lake, road trips and just putzing around.
Ryan Jill - Learning to dance the polka with Papa during Polka-Rama. His favourite show.
Anna - Papa going to ’the mall’ to get a part for the stove at the cabin. When Papa said ’the mall’ it really meant the appliance dump at McPhee Lake.
Thomas - I got one of Papa's famous nicknames. From the day I was born he called me Tom T Hall!
Casey W. and Josh - Going to the playground and McDonalds with Papa. He was always smiling!
Then two bonus babies came: Landon and Lillian, aka Buck Owens and Beautiful Baby!
THINGS PETE LOVED:
His Caregivers - A very special group at the Saskatoon Convalescent Home. They enjoyed his smile and humour and truly made it a home away from home. And Sharon who came to visit every week!
Maisie and crew - They were always there whether it was the annual horseshoe tournament or a pizza party at home!
The Cabin and Bartering with Sharon and Barb
Making Music - with his sister Darlene on the farm!
Any kind of beer - Draft, canned, bottled or homemade. An excellent winemaker as well.
Making a big roaster full of little Ukrainian cabbage rolls with Mar - Then binge eating them for two days with her, until there wasn't one left!
Swearing - Had a potty mouth to express all emotions! Joy, anger, love and pain.
Getting to know his niece's and nephew's families.
Whistling - Even had a special whistle when he was ready to leave a store. We would all come running when we heard it.
Using Obscure words - Sometimes we doubted their meaning but he was always right!
His Garage and Tools - At last count he had 32 hammers. Loved them all!
Sayings! He had a million of them. Usually hilarious. Always good!
Carpentry work - Built his kids each a bed and also refinished antiques for them.
World News - Pete always knew a little bit about a lot of things. And if he didn't, he wasn't afraid to throw out a line of BS!
His pets - They went everywhere with him.
He was a unique guy with a laugh as big as all outdoors who had a great, great love of life. YOU WILL BE MISSED.
Donations may be made in memory of Pete to Saskatoon Convalescent Home, 101 31st, St. West, Saskatoon, Sask. S7L-0P6. Martens Warman Funeral Home 306-934-4888