Peacefully, on June 9, 2024, at Holy Family Home, Helen Marie Sorobey (Gurniak) passed away in her 101st year. 


Helen was predeceased by her loving husband of 25 years, Joseph Gurniak, her parents, Ignacy and Antoninia Lechman, daughter Louise (Bob), 2nd husband Bernard Sorobey, and her 4 brothers Walter, Stanley, Joseph, and Roman, as well as brother-in-law and sister-in-law Aloysius and Carole Nieroda.  


Left to cherish her memory are her daughter Michelle (Barry) and son Anthony (Cathy), grandchildren Tracey (Len), Christopher (Shannon), Joelle (Mike), Carmen (Mike), Chelsea (Christopher), Kellen (Brittany) and Jonathan (Lani) as well as great-grandchildren Adam, Madelyn, Nathan, Noah and Jack; numerous nieces and nephews.


Mom was born in Montreal on October 28,1923, the only girl in a family of 4 boys.  She met her husband Joe while he was visiting his cousin in Montreal, and after corresponding by mail for a year, they were married on Oct.30.1943.  As a young bride of 20 Mom moved to Winnipeg not knowing anyone other than her husband, his parents and his sister Carole, but over the next 80 years she made many life-long friendships with her kindness, generosity and gentleness. Very special to her were the Sobie and Kostyra families, and Mom cherished their times together.


Mom and Dad started their married life on Arlington, then Galloway in the north end of Winnipeg, before purchasing their first home on Enniskillen Avenue in West Kildonan where they lived and raised their family. After Dad’s passing in 1968, Mom now had to enter the workforce at the age of 45. Being fluent in 3 languages, Polish, French, and English, she became a French teacher for the Federal government in their initiative to help civil servants become bilingual. 


Mom’s faith was extremely important to her. She was a long-time parishioner of St. Anthony of the Padua church. Blessed with a beautiful singing voice, she was a member of the parish choir and sang at many weddings and funerals accompanied by her daughter Michelle on the organ. She was also very active in the CWL.  Many Sunday mornings after mass, fellow parishioners were invited to Enniskillen for a bite to eat and some fellowship. Mom always had room for one more and was just too kind and generous to exclude anyone.  


Mom was very proud of her Polish heritage and was an active member, along with Dad, in CPAC, where many more life long friends were made. We all have many fond memories of the Christmas parties and weddings at the Polish Club at Mountain and Arlington, and summers at the CPAC cabins at Gull Lake.


After retirement, Mom moved to an apartment on Whellams Lane, where she spent many happy years.  She quickly got to know almost every resident in the block, regularly introducing her family to all of them. In her mid eighties, needing more care, she transitioned to St. Joseph’s Residence and then Holy Family Home. After many years in a personal care home, coupled with the Covid pandemic, Mom lost her ability to communicate but the sparkle in her eyes and the warmth of her smile told everyone how much she loved and appreciated them visiting. Our mom was a kind, generous, loving and devoted mother, grandmother, and great grandmother who lived by the rule that if you didn’t have anything nice to say about someone, don’t say anything.


Thank you to the staff at St. Joseph’s Residence and Holy Family Home for their wonderful care of our mother and a special thank you to doctors Terry and Andrea Babick for their dedication and personalized care over many years.


Our sincere thanks to Jean Walus and Sonya Sanclemente for their many visits and prayers for Mom during her final days.  


Honorary pallbearers are:  Christopher Kobylak, Kellen Gurniak, Jonathan Gurniak, Ed Nieroda, Greg Kostyra, and Jeff Sobie.


In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Cancer Care Manitoba or a charity of your choice.


Funeral Liturgy will be celebrated on Saturday, June 22 at 10:00 a.m. at Holy Redeemer Roman Catholic Parish, 264 Donwood Drive. Interment to follow in Holy Ghost Cemetery, 4387 Main Street.


Funeral Liturgy

10:00 am
Saturday, June 22, 2024
Holy Redeemer Roman Catholic Church
264 Donwood Drive
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada


Holy Ghost Roman Catholic Cemetery
4387 Main Street
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
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