Theodore Myroslaw Konyk
June 4, 1932 - December 27, 2018
Just after Christmas, our family lost our loving father, father-in-law, Bampa, great-Bampa and uncle, Theodore (Ted). Ted was predeceased by his parents, his younger brother Leo Nikolai, and his beloved wife Vivien Roma (nee Sysak). Ted is survived and mourned by his daughter Roma Lynda Konyk Hanson and her husband Bob, granddaughter Kyla Roma Taylor and husband Jesse, granddaughter Lana Darlene Belton, great-grandson Devlin Theodore Taylor, sister in law Sheilagh Konyk, nieces Leigh Jacqueline Konyk and Lara Elizabeth Konyk, nephew Nicholas Turner and his son-in-law “once removed,” Roger Belton. A man of rare integrity and fierce love of family, Ted was born to Teodor Frederic Konyk and Katherine (Sadowska) Konyk on June 4, 1932, in the North End of Winnipeg. Ted was the loving big brother of the late Leo Nikolai Konyk, whom he missed deeply. Ted alluded to the mischief that he and Leo got into as youngsters in the North End, and he loved to reminisce happily about their early years. Life was not always easy for the Konyk brothers, but from a young age, Teodor and Katherine taught them the value of working smart, as well as hard. Ted trained as a machinist, a career he identified with and loved his entire life. His work as a machinist at Pritchard Engineering also allowed him to help his brother Leo attend McGill University, where Leo graduated from dentistry and was a celebrated athlete in both hockey and football. His aptitude for the trade was encouraged by an early mentor, Mr. Williamson, a leadership role which Ted would later emulate.
Teodore taught Ted about the stock market, and those early lessons were taken to heart. In the late 1960s, Ted changed careers from machinist to stock broker. His ability to see trends and his mathematical aptitude enabled him to become a successful broker. Starting at Burns Brothers and Denton,Ted was Resident Manager of Nesbitt Burns at the time of his retirement. Ted’s career in the brokerage field resulted in rewarding long-term associations with colleagues and clients. Ted loved the market, and his tv was always tuned to BNN. Ted remained engaged with many in the brokerage profession into his final months. He loved sharing his extensive investment knowledge with his family. Ted’s age was an advantage, enabling him to see long term trends through the lens of experience.
When Ted became a broker, he didn’t abandon his roots in the trades. In 1970, Ted and a group of former employees of Pritchard decided to form their own firm, and the core group of Ted, Frank Mestery, Jack Klassen, Len Reimer, George Poetker, Brian Hansell and Jack Wilton hatched the idea of what would become Dynamic Machine at Jack Klassen’s kitchen table. The group was joined in 1975 by Joe McEvoy, who today remains proudly associated with the firm. Dynamic Machine began modestly in a small space on Nairn Avenue. Through hard work and careful management, it grew steadily to become the Dynamic Group of Companies, comprising Dynamic Machine Shop, Dynamic Fluid Power, and Air Compressors. Ted was so proud to be part of the planning of the recently built 30,000 square foot corporate headquarters on Dugald Road. Dynamic is noted for its size and range of services it offers, but also because it is a wholly employee shareholder owned company. Ted remained a significant shareholder in the company and was very active on the Board of Directors. While failing health prevented him from visiting the shop in person in recent years, he kept up with the company’s progress through frequent discussions with and visits from his partners. Ted was proud of the vision and dedication of the team at Dynamic, and was gratified by the growth and prominence that the company enjoys.
While Ted taught his family the value of hard work, he enjoyed play in equal measure. Ted loved to travel, from extended, adventurous road trips to Mexico in the 50s and 60s, family trips to Maui, Mexico and Cuba, and destinations including South America, China, Tahiti, Australia, New Zealand and his beloved ancestral homeland, Ukraine. Ted and Leo arrived in Ukraine the day before independence from Russia was declared in 1991, and while those of us who were left at home were understandably tense as the news unfolded, Ted and Leo had the trip of a life time, visiting a dear cousin in Duliby, near Lviv. Following in their fathers’ and grandfather’s footsteps, Roma Lynda, Leigh and Lana made the journey to Duliby in 2014, and met family who had kept Ted and Leo’s photographs from their visit 23 years prior. Ted was so delighted that the younger generations experienced the beauty of Ukraine.
Ted shared the family passion for horses, becoming a partner in horse racing with Mike Smith, Barry and Pat McQueen, Dave Nelson and Carl Anderson for over 20 years. Family visits to ‘the track” were a favourite outing, whether or not we ended up in the winner’s circle for photos, which was a fairly regular occurrence. Ted loved to visit the backstretch on Saturday mornings, bringing coffee and donuts for the grooms and carrots for their charges. Ted had a gift for connecting with people from all walks of life, and he loved the people of the track. Trips to Kentucky for yearling sales once resulted in a missed flight home as Ted and his buddies visited in an airport bar and missed the final boarding call, causing his daughter to panic when her dad didn’t disembark as planned!
Ted and Roma were fixtures in the Grand Marais beach scene for many years. Ted started visiting Grand Beach by train in the “good old days” taking in the dance hall and ruling the volleyball courts. In 1969, Ted and Roma purchased a very modest cabin, the site of numerous colourful social events. Ted loved his many beach friends. The kids ran wild, the barbecue was always fired up, and with the windows open to the breeze off the lake and the fireplace blazing, the cabin was the best place to be. As an antidote to the stress of work, Ted undertook renovations to the cabin, and it remains a beloved family getaway.
Ted was also a quiet philanthropist. The Ted M. Konyk Bursary is available to assist students in the first year of the Manufacturing Technician program at Red River Community College. He was a director of the Joe Brain Foundation for many years. The Theodore M. Konyk and Dr. Leo N. Konyk Foundation today operates under the stewardship of the Winnipeg Foundation, assisting community organizations aligned with Ted and Leo’s values.
Ted’s dearest legacy is his family. He was heartbroken when his wife Vivien Roma passed away suddenly in 2016, and never completely recovered from this loss. Theirs was a unique partnership, where their differences were outweighed by deep, devoted love. Ted was, and will always be, a rock of support and complete unconditional love to his daughter, Roma Lynda. His granddaughters, Kyla Roma and Lana Darlene, were his bright sunbeams of joy. He saw education as the key to choice and freedom in life, and encouraged his daughter and granddaughters to follow their dreams, saying that when you love what you do, work is a joy. His entrepreneurial spirit lives on in Kyla and Lana, both of whom have successfully charted their own courses in their chosen fields. Business discussions with their Bampa were always mutually enjoyable and enlightening. Ted loved learning about their girls’ business ventures, and always had an open mind, eagerly expanding his understanding of their work. His great-grandson Devlin Theodore carries his name forward, and Bampa treasured his visits with “the little fellow.” Four generations together was a rich blessing.
In keeping with Ted’s wishes, a private family funeral was held. At a future date, the family will host a celebration of his life, during which Ted requested that stories be shared and glasses raised in cheer amid smiles and laughter. “Don’t be sad,” he told us in his last days, ”I’ve had a helluva life! Be happy for me!” While our hearts are broken, we are happy that his pain has ended, and that his spirit is flying free.
Vichnaya Pamyat - eternally remembered. Keep our love around you.
KORBAN FUNERAL CHAPEL