Metro Rybchuk
Metro Rybchuk
Metro Rybchuk
Metro Rybchuk

Obituary of Metro Carl Rybchuk

Metro Carl Rybchuk was born December 16, 1935, in Swan Plain, SK to parents Nick and Minnie Rybchuk (both deceased). He was the second oldest of their eight children. After completing his formal education, he moved to Regina in 1954 and worked at RMP starting out in the truck lot before working his way up to be a car salesman. Metro married Eileen (née Klenk) on August 9, 1958, in Regina, SK. After his marriage Metro worked at Burns’ meat-packing plant and for London Life as an insurance salesman. Outside of work Metro was active in politics becoming a Member of the Legislative Assembly for Saskatchewan in 1982. Dad had a deep faith and love for the Church. He enjoyed serving it in many positions such as being appointed Chairman for the building of St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church Parish Hall. After helping with the cooking duties in the kitchen, in 1986 Metro was asked to take over the catering, caretaking, and management of the Parish Hall. With Metro’s (and his family’s) hard work and good cooking Rybchuk’s Catering became a well-known and loved Regina business that continues to this day. Along with raising a large family, Metro also had a busy social life. He was an avid pool player, golfer and enjoyed attending dances and socials with Eileen. He built the family cottage at Glen Harbour and several homes in Regina with the help of others. Dad and Mom enjoyed their retirement together visiting with their family and friends. As Metro’s health began to fail his presence remained a source of comfort and stability to his family. Dad passed on Friday, October 15, 2021. Metro leaves to cherish his memory his loving wife Eileen; and their children Lori (John) Zaozirny, Robert (Cheryl), Karen, Brian (Christine), Donna, James (Corrine), Michael (Carla) and Jason (Teal). Metro was also tremendously proud of his 25 grandchildren: Rebecca (Jeremy), Seth, Brandon (Rikki), Brett (Kortney), Cassandra (our Angel in Heaven), Brad, Brock, Allen, Bryce, Josephine, Brayden, Kayla, Leshia, Matt, Mikayla, Rhys, Joshua, Brooke, Kyle, Ava, Brianna, Brady, Livie, Lukin, and Lowen; and his great-grandchildren: Aliyah, Zion, Rain, Nyjah. He is also remembered by his siblings Mike, Mary, Anne, Dave (deceased), Dean, Peter and Andy; and many nieces and nephews, cousins, and friends. The family would like to thank the staff at the Regina General Hospital, Ward 5E for their wonderful care of our Dad and the staff at Paragon Funeral Services who have made a difficult time a little easier. Funeral Mass will be held at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, October 20, 2021 at St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church, 2026 Winnipeg St., Regina SK.

Due to the Chief Medical Health Officer's recent recommendations on October 18, 2021 there will be no reception afterwards.

 

Euglogy as read by Lori Zaozirny, October 20, 2021

It’s difficult to find words at a time like this.  I wrote a letter to our parents 2 years ago for their 61st anniversary when, sadly, I couldn’t be there for what we didn’t know then would be our last in person family celebration for some time.

I’ve used the “Dad portion’ of that letter, as a starting point for our family’s Eulogy for Dad - and we’ve all contributed. 

We have a very large family so please sit back and get comfortable … 

That letter began like this …

Dad – our incredible Dad!  Did you ever know that you are our Hero? 

How do we tell you, Dad, how much we all respect you - and admire you – and are so very proud of you - for WHO you are as a husband, a father and a human being - and for WHAT  you have been able to accomplish - in your life and for your family. 

From the young Ukrainian boy named Metro - who left a farm near Swan Plain, Sask with his big brother Mike - for the ‘big city’ - when you were just 18 years of age - you were really just a boy then!  

Uncle Mike went on to Saskatoon and you came to Regina - with nothing but hope for the future - and a willingness to work hard and to learn. 

But you were also blessed with a keen mind - sharp intelligence - tremendous common sense - a warm, friendly and fun personality - and many incredibly varied skills and talents - which you put to good use in your career(s), in your home, in your family - and in your community.  

From your pool playing skills honed in Swan Plain – a very small town - but home to 2 pool halls - where a player either won and kept playing, or lost and left.  Rumour has it you kept playing.  A lot!  And rumour has it that many years later after an extended lapse in playing, you handily beat your son and his friends, cleaned their clocks so to speak.  But you did it in a very nice way.  You were just that good.

And then there is your knowledge, aptitude and innate understanding of cars and trucks and all things construction – you could literally build, take apart and put anything back together again – you kept some of the early family cars running -and with some handy ‘gerry-rigging’ enroute - we always made it to the cottage.

You designed and built at least two of our family home(s) - and a playhouse and tree house for us when we were kids and so much more – anything that we needed - until you discovered you were allergic to sawdust - but then you still built it.  Nothing would stop our Dad from building a world for his family.     

You bought, renovated, rented or sold homes for extra income to support your growing family and, when the time came, you helped us in any way you could to buy - or help build our homes.  That was very important to you.  It helped make many of our dreams come true.  And gave us a good start in our adult lives.    

A good community and family man - You were a 4th Degree Knight of the Knights of Columbus, you participated on the separate school board and at St. Mary’s church where you made significant contributions, including as Chairman of the New Hall Committee.  You were asked to run for public office and you became an elected member of the Sask. Provincial Legislature. 

And you did all of this while establishing and building your own successful ‘Rybchuk family catering business’ … And making friends wherever you went. 

Everyone loved you, Dad!  Anyone who ever attended a function at St. Mary’s remembers you and you were always happy to talk to everyone, especially those who approached you to say that they knew one of your sons or daughters.  You always made everyone feel comfortable and welcome.    

You are the hardest working, smartest, most self-reliant, energetic and resourceful man we have ever known.  Resourceful??  You uprooted a house on Quebec Street and transported it out to Glen Harbour resort on a very big truck and up a very big hill so that, once placed on a foundation you had built, it became our first family cottage!!!  –  

Seriously, Dad, who else can do that???.  Or even think to do that??   No one!!

You loved to hunt - moose/deer - and kept our family venison-fed many a season.  And we all got used to seeing your ‘hunting successes’ hanging upside down in the garage – after they initially scared the wits out of us.  You and our uncles once survived a collision with a horse on the highway on your way home from one of those hunting trips! – we all sure prayed for you that night with Mom - and God blessed us and brought you home.  He clearly wanted you to stick around and be our Dad for a long time. 

You were an excellent golfer, a scratch golfer in fact.  And you enjoyed and were very good at curling and so many other sports which you took to so naturally.  Somehow, however, water-skiing didn’t take to you - though you did make a valiant try and your efforts were a lesson to all of us.  If at first you do not succeed, get back up, put those skis back on and try again.  And again!  And …

But back to golf, Mom might say you spent too much time acquiring and polishing those impressive skills?  My brothers reminded me that you once golfed 51 holes on a June 20 – the longest day of the year. 

Bet that went over well with you, Mom?? 

And it is also family lore that your golf games – with friends, including our parish priests - were made even more enjoyable by your practice of placing a case of beer in the water hazard which your group passed by, or were close to, three times during each 9 hole round. 

We will all remember the anniversary golf games we played together – your ‘bang on’ golf and swing tips - and the fun we had as a family afterwards at a bar-b-q at your home by the pool.  Remarkably, as Mom can attest, it never rained on your wedding anniversary!  

You loved to cook and your management and catering business was your passion.  It was a tremendous joy for you.  It was never a job.  You truly enjoyed the people and the functions – large and small - but you were just as content with even the small things - like peeling potatoes, LOTS of potatoes!  Michael tells us you were always especially excited on ‘turkey carving days’.  The Rybchuk family catering business was a huge part of your life a source of tremendous happiness and satisfaction for you.  And you were good at!  Baba, your Mother told us that no one – not even her – could make perogies like you!  She also said you were a wonderful, devoted and loving son.

But to complete the picture of our Dad, this MUST be said - you knew how to ‘make a dollar go a long way’.  You knew the value of money.   You always said, “It’s not about how much money you make, but what you do with that money”.  Your frugality is ‘legendary’.  That subject in itself could fill a book!  

You were frugal, Dad, but you were generous, too, even at a young age when you had so very little.  And you could laugh at yourself. 

You have told us that when you were about 8 years old you went to a fair in Swan Plain and got free tickets to purchase ice cream cones.  You wanted to take some home for your Mom & Dad - so you hid two in the bushes in order to get two more.  When you returned you were shocked to see just the cones sitting there. And you were upset someone had stolen the ice cream.  Only later did you learn that the ice cream had melted. 

Well, Dad, you have learned and accomplished a great deal since then. 

You have so very much for which to feel content, happy and very proud. 

And we, in turn, are - and have always been - and always will be - so very proud of you and ever grateful to be able to call you our ‘Dad’! 

You have been our rock - our biggest supporter and a great inspiration. 

You didn’t tell us what to do - how to act - or what to say.  You just led by example.  You approached everything from a positive ‘can do’ perspective and you encouraged us when we were discouraged, taught us patience and helped us find a path to success. 

You took me to all of my attempts to pass the driver test (3).  I won’t blame either you or Mom for my lack of skills in that regard … even though you did teach me to drive!  Bob, younger than me, was in the back seat for one of the driving lessons and he says it was so scary he thought he would never drive. 

You were supportive and encouraging, Dad - just as you have been for each and every one of us throughout our lives. 

You gave us good thoughtful advice and you patiently endured our teenage years when we were so sure that we knew it all and we were right.  Thankfully, we all survived that stage - and have had the chance to tell you that we learned from you and to acknowledge that You were right!  And we are all better for it. 

You always said that ‘it is all about ‘attitude’’.  And again, you were right.           

Dad, you were then, you are now, and you always will be – our Hero!

That anniversary letter I mentioned had ended with a prayer for our parents – a prayer that they would use the time at this stage of their lives to fully love and appreciate each other.  To remember the love they had for each other way back when they first got together and the love that has seen them through the years. 

Now that was August 2019 - pre Covid – and, as it turns out – there is a silver lining to everything – ‘isolation’ gave them just that opportunity. 

Our parents were able to spend ‘quality’ time together – more than a year of it - and to enjoy each other’s company and love – side by side through these times which have been so challenging for everyone.  That is a gift from God that will help us through our grief at this tremendous loss of our wonderful Dad. 

And Mom knows without a doubt - Dad really, really, really loved you, Mom.

Mom and Dad met on Wed. August 7, 1956. They were at what was known as the J&S in Regina – my Mom, Eileen, with her beautiful smile, wearing pedal pushers and a long blonde ponytail (looking like Doris Day) - and Dad (looking a lot like Elvis) – lanky slim, dark black hair - which he kept to the very end - much to the envy of many, including some of his sons. 

Two very nice, special, good-looking young people met and married - after a 3-year courtship with lots of ‘discussion’ about religion.  Mom claims that was how they honed their impressive argument skills.  She says Dad attended mass with her on Sundays and they would talk about the gospel and readings afterwards - and sometimes a double collection which Dad was not all in favour of. 

But Dad did fully embrace the Catholic Church and living his faith was very important to him.  He always said he had so much for which to be grateful to God. And he was thankful always - including especially for his family.

Which in the initial 17 plus years of their marriage included 8 offspring

– Lori, Bobby, Karen, Brian, Donna, Jimmy, Michael, Jason (read rapidly!) - did that sound like you, Mom?

And Dad was also very grateful for their as yet indeterminate number of grandchildren and great grandchildren.    I will now take the next hour and a half to name them.

Just kidding of course – its’s all in the program.

But now that I’ve talked about Dad and what he means to us and has done for us, I would like to very briefly share, in no particular order, a little of what we have learned from our Dad:

Michael – that sometimes just being quiet together is perfectly o.k. - and that potato peeling can be satisfying;

Jim – to lead by example – and to fully enjoy yourself while playing golf;

Brian – that during our teenage years Dad actually was smarter than us – and that he is more like Dad than he ever thought. 

Donna – that when working together and working hard, especially with Dad, much can be accomplished – and she learned lots about political debates!

Karen – that generosity in spirit, words and action is what life is all about - and that ice cream melts. 

Bob – that perseverance can make dreams come true – and that Dad is a far better pool player …

Lori – to stand tall, but be good and kind to everyone you meet – and to take taxis (no, seriously Dad would never spend money on a taxi). 

Mom – that to Dad, Mom was always beautiful – at any time of day and with any kind of hair style or colour.      

Jason - tells a story that is quintessential Dad – once when Dad took him to Humbolt for the Baseball provincials, he didn’t have a great game pitching and Dad felt badly for him.  After the game, Dad took him to a sports gear store and he spotted a glove with Mark McGwire’s signature.  Now if anyone knows Jason – he was obsessed with Mark McGwire and – as we all know – Dad was frugal.  But Dad bought the glove for Jason.  Something which Jason still has and will cherish forever. 

And that is how Dad was for all of us.  To Dad, love was very much about putting the other person first.  

Unlike others his age, Dad really did not have any pain.  He always told Mom that he wished God would take away from Mom and give him some of her pain.  

Dad truly loved his family and it would warm his heart and make him so happy to see all of us - his beautiful wife and all of his family - gathered here together, united in Love for Him and for each other.

Before I close, there are some lyrics to a song (by the Flaming Lips) that I would like to share with you.

It’s called - Do you Realize

Do you realize – you have the most beautiful face,

Do you realize – we are floating in space,

Do you realize – that happiness makes you cry

Do you realize – that everyone you know one day will die?

And instead of saying all of your goodbyes, let them know you realize

That life goes fast, it’s hard to make the good things last

you realize the sun doesn’t go down

It’s just an illusion caused by the world spinning round.  (end of song)

We do realize.  All of us gathered here today and those who are thinking of us from afar – we all realize.  To Dad we have to say our ‘goodbye for now’. 

But we do so - not just with heavy hearts - but with the knowledge and the realization that Dad knows we love him - and that he loves us all very much. 

Dad – just in case you didn’t hear it – YOU ARE OUR HERO!!!!!!

Good bye for now Dad.  Rest in Peace – you earned it.  But do keep an eye on us. 

We need you, we always will. 

And this evening and often we will have a rum & coke in your honour and think of you - with your brother Uncle Dave - and all of your new friends in heaven - having one as well. 

Cheers, Metro!  Cheers, Dad!!     God Bless You!

Wednesday
20
October

Funeral Mass

11:30 am
Wednesday, October 20, 2021
St. Mary's R.C. Parish
2026 Winnipeg St.
Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
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