After a brief battle with COVID-19, Helen Gomez-Perales (nee Kohuska) passed away at Holy Family Home in Winnipeg, Manitoba on December 7, 2020 at the age of 91.

She was predeceased by her beloved husband and soulmate Juan Lamberto Gomez-Perales, as well as her mother Natalia Kohuska and brother Albert Kohuska.

Helen is survived by her three children Juan (Lorna), Lia (Gerry), Niki (Brian), as well as her five grandchildren Camila, Eamonn, Zachary, Jordan, and Liam and much loved extended family and friends in Canada and abroad.

Helen lived a fascinating life full of love, art, culture, travel and intrigue. She always followed her heart.... and her heart led her on some very exciting adventures!

Helen was born in Sioux Lookout, Ontario. She moved to Winnipeg with her mother and brother when she was in her teens, graduating from St. John’s High School in 1946. Fluent in several languages, she worked as a translator for Eaton’s for several years. Her love of the arts prevailed and she became very involved in local theatre as a set designer for The Manitoba Theatre Centre and Rainbow Stage. She studied Fine Arts at the Winnipeg School of Art, the University of Manitoba, and then the Banff School of Fine Arts.

She had big dreams and she made them happen. She got a job as a waitress in Sioux Narrows, Ontario and saved every penny so that she could go to Europe with her friend Pat. This was no ordinary sightseeing trip. Helen immersed herself in the art and culture of Europe, studying art history, touring galleries, and studying drawing and painting at the Andre L’Hote Academy in Paris.

Kismet and her sense of adventure took her to Spain where she met the love of her life. She was married in Madrid in 1956 and began her family, living in an ancient windmill, on the island of Ibiza.

In 1959 Helen, with her husband and young son, returned to Canada.

That was just the beginning!

Helen lived a life full of love, family, friends, adventure and fun. Everything she touched turned to gold. She painted non stop! A long time member of the Manitoba Society of Artists, she became a world renowned, sought after artist, with her paintings even appearing in Hollywood movies. She taught art at the Winnipeg Art Gallery and Art in the Park at Assiniboine Park. She was a mother extraordinaire, gardener, bibliophile, master chef, rock hound, carpenter, volunteer librarian, and lover of all possibilities. She was, in this order but also simultaneously, an artist, wife, mother, daughter, aunt, grandmother, homemaker, traveller, jokester, nature lover, and friend to all. Her early departure at 91 has left a void in this world. We weren’t ready for you to leave. We love you too much. Rest In Peace. 

The family would like to extend sincere gratitude to the wonderful staff at Holy Family Home.

Helen will be cremated, and due to COVID-19 restrictions, a celebration of Helen’s life will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Holy Family Home, 165 Aberdeen Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2W 1T9.

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