Passed away peacefully with his wife by his side at Mississauga Credit Valley Hospital.
Tom was born in Dundee, Scotland to Andrew and Irene (nee Machotcka) Zakrzewski. He arrived in Canada in 1951 aboard the ocean liner Mary Queen of Scotland, along with his mother, oldest brother Stephen and middle brother George. They were met by his father who had found a home for the family on The Kingsway in Toronto. Tom spent his childhood riding his bike through the neighbourhood and spending time with his lifelong best friend Jimmy Millson, including weekly visits to Lambton United Church - to take part in their Friday night basketball games. Tom attended Etobicoke Collegiate, participating in any and all school sports teams and was awarded the role of prefect in his final year. Following graduation, he spent a year travelling through Canada and Europe allowing him to get in touch with his Polish roots, after which he completed 4 years at the University of Toronto, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts, History in 1972.
Upon graduation, Tom sought work experience and decided to give A&P a try for a year or so - and as many know - the 'so' became 46 years, retiring from his role as Vice President of Labour Relations in December 2019. Tom loved his job and his many years spent with A&P, later supporting its transition into Metro Inc. Those that knew him experienced his endless passion for his work, resulting in unparalleled trust and profound respect amongst those he worked with - both within and outside the Organization.
Tom met his wife on a blind date arranged through mutual friends and was married to her, twice, in November 1974 and May 1975. Two daughters rounded out the family, Katherine, arriving in August 1979 and Alexandra, arriving in 1981.
Tom loved sports and was a diehard Maple Leaf fan, followed by the Blue Jays and of course the Raptors. He played volleyball with his wife regularly until the girls got older, and then cheered the girls on in their team sport efforts throughout the years. Tom continued cheering, this time for his one and only grandson Leighton, at his sports events, most notably his hockey games which Tom attended as often as possible.
Summers were spent at the cottage at Cawaja Beach, on Georgian Bay, with lifelong friends and their families as they grew. Some summers included a “Dads” canoe trip, where a few of the cottage dads took their kids on canoe trips exploring northern lakes and rivers and introducing them to the great outdoors. Happy times watching the little ones grow into adulthood, with new generations joining the group with their own long-lasting friendships.
Tom will be forever loved by his wife, Ewa, his children: Katherine (Mary Jane) and Alexandra and his grandson, Leighton Zakrzewski-Brown. He will be missed by his brothers Stephen and George (Linda), his nephews and their families.
A Celebration of Life will be held once it is safe to do so.
For those who wish, donations may be made in Tom’s honour to the Canadian Cancer Society, the Heart and Stroke Foundation or the MLSE Foundation.