October 20, 1933 – January 20, 2021
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of John Ostoforoff Senior. After a short bout with cancer John died peacefully on January 20, 2021 at the Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital with family by his side.
Born in Thrums on October 20, 1933 to William and Vera Ostoforoff, he was their second son with an older brother Walter and eventually two younger brothers, Pete and Bill. Times were difficult and John left school after grade eight to help parents and grandparents with the huge gardens they grew and sold at every Saturday Market in Nelson BC. In addition to gardens, the family had cows, horses and chickens that needed to be looked after as well as haying in late summer and winter preparations for animals and family alike.
At age sixteen, John went to work in the sawmill for Passmore Lumber Company and one day while driving a carrier through the mill, he noticed a young girl nearby on her way to catch a school bus. That young girl, Polly Swetlikoff, would eventually become the love of his life.
John and Polly married in 1956 and together they built their first home in Thrums where they had three children, Richard, Christine (Glenn), Johnny (Marnie), and eventually five grandchildren, Jason, Chelsea, Alicia, Tyler and Riley.
Sports were a huge part of John’s life and in his younger years he was a pitcher for a local softball team and as his children got older, he encouraged them to participate in sports. But his love of hockey was well known among family and friends with John hardly ever missing a game on TV on Saturday night.
Music was also big in John’s life. There were many summer evenings in front of a bonfire when brothers, family or friends got together for a sign song with John strumming his guitar.
There were also many summer weekends when the family would pile into their camper and go camping with friends by a lake or venture out into the wilderness. John and Polly were also very active in the community and for seventeen years sang with the Kootenay Choir and eventually joined the Heritage Choir as well.
It wasn’t long after John retired from the sawmill that he and Polly got hired as drivers for Budget Rent A Car where they stayed for twelve years moving cars around within the province.
Although John was a healthy man all his life, age finally caught up with him and they made the decision to sell their property in Thrums and move to Castlegar. John lived his life to the fullest, but love for his family was always first and foremost and as he grew older he looked forward to their visits.
Rest in Peace John, we love you and you will be missed.
We would like to thank Dr. MacWati, all the nurses and doctors at Trail General Hospital for their constant care, and a sincere thank you to the social workers for your kindness and attention. As well, the family would like to thank the Castlegar Funeral Home and Crematorium for their guidance and compassion during this time.
Our sincere thank you goes out to all of our friends and family who sent flowers and cards, for all your telephone calls and condolences, as well as a thank you to our extended family who could not be here at this time, but kept us in their prayers. If we have forgotten anyone, we do thank you.
A celebration of life will be held later this summer.
Ostoforoff and Kozak Families
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