Danute Rautins, born May 9, 1923 in Panevezys, Lithuania died peacefully of heart failure at Labdara Lithuanian Nursing Home on May 8, 2020 in her 97th year. Danute was the only beloved daughter of Ignas and Elena Pasilys and lived with them briefly in Zarasai, Lithuania before fleeing Soviet repression in the early 1940’s.
She was the cherished wife of the late Oswald Rautins, a Latvian she met in a displaced persons’ camp in Germany. They both lost family members at a young age and had an instant bond. Danute was the loving Mother of George, Rauda and Leo and their partners. She was an awesome Grandmother and Great Grandmother to a very big brood.
Danute ruled the household so we spoke Lithuanian, the matriarchal language although she spoke impeccable English and German. She had an indomitable spirit and a strong will which her friends and family will attest to.
Although a patriotic Canadian, Danute was forever loyal to Lithuania, her homeland and spent many years sharing her expertise in music with the National Museum of Canada and Toronto’s Lithuanian community as a piano teacher and performer. Danute had magical hands that could play music, sew, knit, garden and cook. She was most adept in the kitchen where we were often held captive to her big meals.
Danute enjoyed being physically fit and she exercised religiously every day, which was a testament to her long life. She will always be remembered as a champion of the underdog, a believer in self-actualization and a fierce advocate for independence. May her soul enjoy the best of what this world and the next have to offer.
The Rautins family is most indebted and grateful to the Labdara staff and Dr. Daiva Norkus for the excellent care Danute received over the years.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Labdara Foundation. For more information please go to the Labdara web site (Labdara.ca).
A commemorative service will be arranged at a later date.
Private interment will be at Mount Hope Cemetery on 305 Erskine Avenue where Danute will forever be united with Oswald on their next journey together.