Alec William Hoodicoff
Family and friends gathered at the Brilliant Cultural Centre on June 29 2009 to bid a fond farewell to Alec William Hoodicoff. Born on July 24, 1932 to parents William and Helen, he was raised on a small working farm in Lower Raspberry Village. Alec was the son of a carpenter and his pathway became clear at a very young age.
His father William and George Relkoff formed a company called Columbia Builders and at age 15 Alec apprenticed with them. They became contractors and built schools from Nakusp, Edgewood, Proctor, Castlegar all the way through to Rock Creek. They also constructed many local municipal buildings such as a post office, liquor store, credit union, health unit and one for the RCMP. Although his teenage years were busy working and learning, he always found time for his harmonica and guitar. He could carry a tune and at age 19 he sweetly proposed to Mary Samarodin of Koch Siding. They married on a wintry day on Feb. 16, 1952. For the next 57 years they shared a love story as friends and partners. Their home was open to all. They fed strangers and family, stray dogs and cats and half of the Kootenay Valley.
Alec and Mary settled in Lower Raspberry Village, established a home and before long their son Gerry was born. Being a proud father he set about building Gerry’s childhood toys and later in life a home, furniture and a business for him.
In 1965 Alec opened his own business called Castle Craft Woodworks. His technique in designing, cutting, staining and assembling beautiful kitchen cabinets was masterful and artistic. He was highly respected for his knowledge and integrity during his working career. Castlegar was fortunate to have had such a skilled craftsman in their midst.
Alec had a talent using a camera and won many special recognitions from photographer Gordon Pettitt. Alec’s nieces turned to him to photograph their weddings but most treasured of all were the exquisite hope chests he lovingly made for them.
Retirement years were happy for Alec and Mary and they were rarely seen without their beloved grandchildren Eric and Steve at their sides. These two boys brought such joy and fulfillment to their lives. Alec felt very blessed that the family name would continue.
Alec was a lifetime USCC member and was known to be a man of few words but many good deeds. As was expressed at his funeral, it was very sad for the community to have lost such a respected and valued member. Unkindly, the last few years were difficult for Alec as he faced declining health. It was Alec’s fortitude and bravery in facing this challenge that left his most powerful imprint upon the family. He closed his life as he lived it – a pillar of strength and continuity for those he loved so dearly. Sadly on June 23, 2009 just one month shy of his 77th birthday we lost Alec.
He was commemorated in a traditional Doukhobor funeral at the Brilliant Cultural Centre.
He leaves behind his wife Mary, son Gerry and partner Wendy, grandchildren Eric and Steve, sister-in-law Nancy and Alex Pereverzoff, brother-in-law Pete Samarodin and sister-in-law Mary Hoodicoff
of Vancouver and many nieces and nephews.
Alec was predeceased by parents William and Helen, brothers Mike
and wife Polly, Bill and wife Betty, Peter. Also sister Verna and her daughter Janey.
May God accept him and his soul in His Heavenly Kingdom.
No one person goes through life alone or death alone and it is with the most sincere and humblest of feelings that we say Thank You to all that have opened their hearts to heal ours.
To Alec’s doctors and the exceptional staff at KBRH, you were his personal angels. Flowers, food, visits and telephone calls to our home carried us through one day at a time. To Bill Streleiff of the Castlegar Funeral Chapel, your professionalism and compassion was so honourable. Laura Veregin and John Jr. your sympathetic words will never be forgotten. The psalm singers who are the heartbeat of our funeral services, the cemetery workers, the excellent cooks, John and Mary Tarasoff for their heartfelt singing and Bill Popoff for lending such a helpful hand, we extend a deep bow. The Kootenay Men’s working group for providing Alec such a comfortable little house and to Leonard Voykin for your assistance at the graveside. Our family would especially like to acknowledge Alex Pereverzoff for his distinguished approach in leading the service. Your guiding hands and wisdom before and during the funeral are very gratefully appreciated.
We could not have said our tearful goodbyes without all of you. Thank You from the bottom of our hearts.