With friends and family by his side, Algis peacefully departed on the morning of January 1, 2022. Augie, one of the names he was known by, leaves behind his sister, Irene, and his nephew, Lucio Spizzirri (Tonia Swaby); his beloved "surrogate" family in Toronto in the Lithuanian-Canadian community, above all his "brother," Romas Oleka (Jacquie Smeaton); many godchildren including Lainey, Maxine, Michael, Patrick, and others whom he sponsored at confirmation; and his cousin, Paulina Mačiulis and her daughter, Noemi. Al's many loyal, lifelong friends from childhood days include the Boccongelles, the Yorks, the Tanzinis, the Ruszels', and the Dobilas family. After his move further west in Toronto from Caledonia Road to King George's Road, he was welcomed by friendly new neighbours.
Several months ago, when he was asked how he'd like to be remembered, Augie replied, "As an 'up' guy." He certainly was upstanding and stood up for others. In his youth, he was always the rebel child, too wild for St. Michael's College School and too spirited for Ryerson Polytechnic Institute. In his career on Bay Street, he pulled himself up by the bootstraps, starting with a piece of chalk as a post-boy on the Exchange floor to retiring, over 40 years later, as a director at RBC-Dominion, where he was known as the "Client Crusader."
Outside the financial sphere he crusaded for others by supporting many charities and projects, from well-established ones in Canada to newer ones in Uganda and Lithuania. In his retirement, Al pursued old interests with a new twist. He segued from lead vocalist in a basement rock band to baritone in Volunge, the Toronto Lithuanian-Canadian Choir, and from playing rock guitar to playing classical guitar. From mowing the family lawn on Caledonia Road he learned to create the beginnings of a beautiful garden for his house on King George's Road. He never gave up his athletic activities and continued to play hockey until last year. He tried downhill skiing until he broke his thumb and more recently took up golf seriously.
Algis traveled to places where family lived, often to Lithuania, Florida, and the U.K., and to new horizons, the Northwest Territories and Japan. He did not manage a proposed trip to Argentina. Where is Al now? Perhaps up somewhere with his parents, Janina and Balys, going to guitar lessons or fishing at Orr Lake; or with Paul, Tony, or Ed playing a card game of Tukstantis.
Funeral and Visitation details have been entrusted to Turner & Porter Yorke Chapel. Donations in memoriam would be appreciated to be made to the Ross Tilley Burn Centre at Sunnybrook Hospital. It is with great appreciation that the family thanks Dr. Joshua Tepper, and the medical professionals at St. Joseph's Health Centre and Princess Margaret Cancer Centre including Dr. Dominik Lehnert, Dr. Dorothy Lo, and Amy Robinson. Ilsek ramybeje, Alguikai.
A visitation will be held at Turner & Porter Yorke Chapel, 2357 Bloor Street West on Thursday, February 3, 2022 from 5:00-7:00 p.m. Due to the restrictions surrounding Covid, registration is required to attend. To register, please use the link provided below.