Passed away on Sunday, October 11, 2020, at the age of 87. Beloved husband of the late Rose. Loving father of Ludwig (Michele), Larry (Cheryl), John (Tracey), and Terry. Proud grandfather of Justin, Christopher, Andrew, Meaghan-Marie (late), Kayla-Marie, Emily, Sarah, Marilyn, Veronica, David, and Alexander, and great-grandfather of Grayson and Asher. He is survived by beloved brother Walter (Geraldine) and lost a beloved sister Jeannette when she was only 17 years of age, which at the time, was profoundly sad for himself and his family. He also had many nieces and nephews. Many of these, and even some of their children, have maintained contact with John over the years.
John was born in Blaine Lake, Saskatchewan on May 12, 1933. He was of Ukrainian stock. He often spoke of the hardship of the depression years and having to walk long distances to school in freezing temperatures, without adequate clothing, and with little or no food for lunch or snacks. He helped his parents farming a quarter section of land even as a young child and as he grew older he ran the farm himself. At one point the farm was re-possessed as they did not have the money to pay the mortgage, but Dad worked to get the money needed and was able to reclaim the land for his family.
In his youth, Dad had a reputation for being a bit of a pool shark, but not wanting to make a career of playing pool or farming, he decided to relocate to the big city of Toronto where he met Rose Psznienczny whom he married in 1958 and soon his four boys followed in 1959 (Ludy), 1962 (Larry), 1965 (John Jr) and 1967 (Terry). He raised in a family in Brampton/Bramalea, but later moved to Caledon East, and for the past couple of decades he resided in Mississauga.
When he went to seek employment in the post office in the late 50s/early 60s they said his application was on the bottom of a very large stack – he took his application from the bottom and said, no problem, now it’s on top. They asked him what made him more qualified than all the other applicants and he said that one day he would be sitting on the other side of the table conducting the interviews. His gumption landed him a job on the spot. By the time he took early retirement, he had risen to management and he was the one who was called upon the clean-up trouble postal stations.
After retiring from Canada Post he had a very successful career as a Salesman working for Bramview Ford. His innate people/selling skills enabled him to be among the top salesman in Ontario for several years 1995-98. In general, Dad was successful at whatever he put his mind to. He did very well considering the hardship of his youth, or perhaps it was that hardship that molded him for success? Not bad for a poor little farm boy from Saskatchewan.
Dad was also very much a family man. There are many fond remembrances of gatherings of extended family at holiday time or BBQing in the backyard. He loved to fish with his brother Walter at Rice Lake and often took one of his sons on outings that started in the dark hours of the early morning. His interests included fishing, curling, and golfing. Although he took up golfing later in life he turned out to be quite good and one year even came in second place in his club championship and he had a hole-in-one, a feat that few life-long golfers can claim to have achieved.
Dad also loved to travel – he and Mom saw the Vatican, the middle east, went on several cruises, and wintered many years in Las Vegas.
Dad was a man of faith right from his youth. He tells a story of lying in a field in Saskatchewan with a friend at night looking up at the stars and they were wondering if there was more to life than just what they were experiencing day-to-day. Dad said that he believed that all of what they were seeing could not have just happened by itself, but has to have come about from a creator. His friend was tragically killed in a farming accident the very next day, but it was remarkable he had the chance to share this belief before that event.
Dad (and Mom) brought up their family in the Roman Catholic tradition. We went to Sunday mass and received all the sacraments. He prayed the Rosary and had come to know the Divine Mercy of Jesus. When his wife Rose passed on 1 May 2009 he leaned on his faith, and to help him through his grief he became involved in the Bereavement group at his parish, Merciful Redeemer. Even when Dad’s health deteriorated and he developed dementia many years later, he often spoke of his faith.
It was hard to see Dad lose his short term memory. He had been living in Long Term Care in Halton Hills since March 2019 and was a favorite resident because of his charms and easy-going nature. We are grateful that Dad did not have to suffer through the later stages of dementia. In lieu of flowers, family and friends are encouraged to make a donation to the Alzheimer’s Society in his memory.
Info: Due to COVID 19 restrictions there are three 45 min blocks of visitation at 4pm, 5pm and 6pm with a sanitization in between. If you wish to attend to pay your respects you must be approved by the family to ensure numbers do not exceed 18 per time slot. To indicate your interest in attending email Ludy Hollick at LHAIncp@gmail.com with the names and contact information of those who would be attending, and your relationship to John Hollick (Sr). This must be done before midnight 18 Oct 2020. You will receive a confirmation email from Ludy if there was sufficient space to accommodate your request. Priority will be given to extended family and friends/business associates of John Hollick (Sr).
Info: Due to COVID-19, if you are planning to attend the funeral please email Ludy Hollick at LHAIncp@gmail.com indicating your relationship to John Hollick (Sr) and the number of individuals attending. Masks are mandatory for those in attendance.