Pyka, Hildegard 'Hilde'

Pyka, Hildegard 'Hilde'

October 25th, 2020

December 30, 1922 – October 25, 2020

Our world tilted off its axis on Sunday, October 25, 2020, when we lost the matriarch of our family. Our Mom, Mutti, Oma and Omi passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by her children. She will be dearly missed by her children, Gina Petty (Chris), Veronica Bruckschwaiger (Matt), Ursula Westelaken (Art), Frank Pyka (Mary) and Joan Milroy (Bill). Treasured by her grandchildren: Sean Petty, Sarah Petty (Tristan), Heidi Bruckschwaiger, Katrina Burke (Logan), Eric Westelaken, Julia Westelaken (Matt), Alice Hoevenaars (Derek), Trevor Pyka, Laura Pyka, Alexander Milroy (Clara), and Neil Milroy; and great-grandchildren: Henry, Elizabeth, Maisie Hoevenaars, and Noah Burke, as well as her beloved canary Hunsi IV. Hildegard (née Krause) was born in Germany and immigrated to Canada in 1952 with her husband Franciszek Pyka (d. 2000), where they raised their family. Hilde always welcomed her family and friends into their home where they enjoyed her delicious German meals and freshly baked cakes. Her children and grandchildren were the lucky recipients of her beautifully knitted sweaters and baby outfits. On Quebec Street, the home she loved, she was known as the flower lady for her beautiful gardens. She received a heartfelt, loving sendoff from her children with her signature double-handed wave. A private memorial service will be held on Friday, October 30, 2020 at 3:00 p.m. The family welcomes friends to view the service via livestream.


To watch the livestream of the service, please click here:

memorial service livestream link

Those wishing to make a donation in memory of Hilde are asked to consider Fighting Blindness Canada or Family Service Thames Valley.


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Book of Condolences

Oskar (billy) SanioShe may be gone but never forgotten by the Sanio family who was closely linked to her for all of our lives and most of hers. She was mom's best friend since they met shortly after arriving in Canada and lived on Quebec St. She took care of us when mom went into the hospital for another one of her 10 children. The deepest condolences from our family to yours from Sonia Sanio-Parlee, Oskar (Billy) Sanio, Peter Sanio, Eveline Ogborne (Sanio), Michael Sanio, Moritz Sanio, Gabi Sanio-ONeill, Sanford (Sam) Sanio, John Sanio and all their respective families!!
Sonia Sanio-Parlee and FamilyOur deepest sympathy on the loss of such an important person in your family. Mom was so fortunate to have such a good friend, with such a great sense of humour. Our thoughts are with you.
Rudy RommeUrsala and Frank My deepest sympathy on your loss. She did a fantastic job raising a great family.Her love and kindness will live forever in her children.All the best. Your old school teacher
Noé Béatrice To my aunt Hildé, On October 25, 2020, you left us for a new world, up there in the stars. Your smile and your kindness will always remain in our hearts. Today, rest in peace with your dear Franck, and if aloft you cross the path of your brother Herbert, my daddy, then give him a hug for me. Our sincere condolences and thoughts to your family. Béatrice, Daniel and the children Maxime and Eric. A ma tante Hildé, Le 25 octobre 2020, tu nous a quitté pour un nouveau monde, la haut dans les étoiles. Ton sourire et ta gentillesse resteront toujours dans notre cœur. Aujourd’hui, repose en paix auprès de ton cher Franck, et si tout la haut, tu croises le chemin de ton frère Herbert, mon papa, alors, serre le très fort dans tes bras de ma part. Toutes nos condoléances et pensées les plus sincères à ta famille. Béatrice, Daniel et les enfants Maxime et Eric.
Guenter LipkiUnser herzlichstes Beileid zum Tode eurer Mutter Tante und Oma Sie war sehr beliebt und wir werden Ihre Anrufe und Ihren Kaffeeklatsch in Ihrem Hause sehr vermissen. Karin und Guenter
Annette StewartJoan, Bill & family, I remember visiting your home before an evening seminar many years ago and enjoying a delicious traditional German meal with a gracious hostess. Your home was so much like mine...a mingling of what our parents left behind when they immigrated and the gratitude for that opportunity. Life hadn't been easy but it was still good! May we all honour the memory of our loved ones by the way we embrace each day. Take good care of each other. Love, Greg & Annette Stewart
Andrea and CarmenSending our sympathies and prayers to you at this sad time. Your mother and Oma leaves a legacy of family love. May she Rest In Peace. I will have to learn to make a German dessert in her memory. Love, Andrea, Carmen and Anthony CARLUCCI
Lois & Glenn Hayes and FamilyDear Gina, Veronica, Ursula, Joan, Frank and families, we add our deepest condolences on the passing of your dear Mother and Omi. I know I (Lois) will always hold so many memories of her close to my heart - from the time we lived across the street from one another on Quebec Street in the mid-fifties when I became immediate friends with her two eldest daughters, until one of the last visits with her with my husband, daughter and grandson. She made sure her daughters served us coffee, cake and a little something extra as she played peek-a-boo with two-year-old Declan. It was such a heartwarming visit. She was as kind, curious and gracious as ever. May all of your good memories of her bring you comfort in the days ahead. XXOO
Connie (Fitzgerald) CornwallSo very sorry, Your Mom was an amazing lady I always drive down Quebec Street with a smile thinking of great memories we had as children. May she Rest In Peace. Thanking of you and your time of grief. Connie
Gretel KarkokiWe are so saddened and deeply shocked at the loss of a beautiful lady - Tante Hilde - your mom. We are thinking of you and your family at this sad time. Sending you all our love , from your cousins in England.
SaraHello Joan, I want to offer my deepest condolences for your mom. She was a special lady and I thoroughly enjoyed my time with her. She had a good heart and I can’t tell you how it touched my heart hearing her telling me about growing up and the trials and tribulations she endured. It made me realize just how strong and resilient she was. She was always kind and caring to me and I’m so glad that I got to spend time with her. On Saturday when I was there she told me that she loved me and that is a moment that I will treasure the rest of my life. Thank you for allowing me into your lives and most of all, your moms. May she rest in sweetest peace.🦋. Sara
Jacqueline CroftUrsula, it looks like your Mom was a great and special lady. She had a good life. All my sympathy to you, Art and your family. My prayers and thoughts are with you. Love Jackie
Karin & Fritz Eints-ScheidiesDear Gina, Veronica, Ursula, Joan, Frank, and your families, It is with a very sad heart that I send you my sincere condolences on the passing of your dear mother and Omi. “Frau” Pyka was always part of my life from the days our families lived together on Wellington St. when Gina was 4 years old, to Quebec St. in our teens. She was my best and kindest babysitter then. Now I will miss our afternoon Kaffeeklatsches, the wonderful cakes, and the fascinating stories of her youth in Schlesien. Frau Pyka, you became my best friend and you will always be remembered with much love.
Julie PettyOur deepest sympathy for your loss. Nothing ever prepares you for the loss of your mom. I hope it gives you comfort to know that she had a long and happy life and at the end, wrapped in love in the care of the family at home. Think of the good times, the wonderful soups, and your mother's fondness for Schnapps and the love for her family. With love from Julie and Tim
Ilse & AndreDear Pyka Families. Our deepest Sympathy in the loss of your Dear Mother /Oma. We are grateful that we got to know and spend some wonderful time with this “Powerhouse”. She was a very strong, hard working, free giving and fun loving Person. To mind comes her visit to WPG. where she was saddened that the “Beer Garden” closed so early and she missed the opportunity to spoil as all by buying refreshment for us. May all your loving memories of her in time fill the void her passing left behind. Love and Light Ilse & Andy
Terry CaineGina, I was very sorry to hear about your Mum. I remember that lovely coffee you and she used to drink first thing, when we came to visit the first time! Ninety-seven is a marvellous age to attain, and it sounds as if she had a comparatively easy end surrounded by family, at home. I will let Ros and Richard know. We will certainly be thinking of her.
Rosie JessettI am so sorry to hear about the passing of your mother. She was a wonderful lady, and was always smiling. I have great, loving memories of her. My condolences go to you and your family. She was a lucky lady to have had such a wonderful family by her side. I know she will be greatly missed. With the passing of my father this September, let's hope they are all kicking up their heels and having a great party. Thinking of you all at this very sad time. Love from Rosie and family. XOXO
Felicja SkrzypczykI join you in these painful days. I thought Hilde would be with you forever , but she will live in your hearts forever. A few years ago, I received a joyful e-mail from Frank, saying he was coming to visit us in Poland. Today I received a sad e-mail saying that his mother had passed away. I embrace you all warmly. Love Felicja and Jurek
Terry CampbellDear Gina and Chris, We are all so sad for your loss. Thinking of you, especially Gina. What a blessing to die at home with family there. I know you would have been there if you could. Keith and Alex and I toasted to Hilda last night. Slainte (Slanja)! Prost! Salut!
MSJ HeniaDear Gina, Ursula , Frank , Veronica and Joan, and all of your families, In communion of prayer wih each one of you and your family. It was so lovely to see Hilde and hear her voice at the beginning of September. Thanks be to God that she was still so well at that time. and thanks that she could pass to His Home peacefully, having all of you around her, With Love, Henia
WK John SanioDear Frankie, Joanie, Ursula, Gina, Veronica and families As a child I spent more than a few hours in your kitchen while mom and Frau Pyka chatted over coffee. I was obsessively drawn to the springy door stopper on the wall heading up the stairs into the kitchen. I would sit there for hours twanging that crazy spring. Twangggggg Twangggg Twangggg. Over and over again. Your mom ever patient would pat me on the head, pass me a cookie, or a piece of cake and smile at me as I twanged that spring. Twangggg Twanggggg Twanggggg. Frau Pyka was a huge part of my early years and I still occasionally twang the stoppers just for old times sake. John
Laurie LewisSo sorry to hear of your loss. Our thoughts are with you Frank, and your family. She sounds like a very special lady.
JudyI wanted to say to the family of Hilda that I am so sorry for your loss. I know that she is at peace and with all her friends and in your father’s open arms. I haven’t been there a long time but was totally blessed with all the moments I had with see that special lady with a big heart and the many hours that we spent talking about life. And to see a family that adores her so much and the love she had for each one of you. Sending warm hugs your way.
Susan (Griffin) CharleboisDear Gina,Veronica,Ursula,Joan,Franklin and grandchildren I used to live across the street at 512 Quebec Street, in the late 1950's. I still remember your mother very well. I became friends with Gina. I remember you mother she was a hard working person and very proud of her children. I can still see you all going to church every Sunday all dressed so neatly. She was so proud of all of you. She was always so pleasant. Later in life when I was married, I dropped over to see your mother and we had our baby son Michael with us. You mother was happy and loving with our son (now in his 40's) You could tell your mother loved children. Your mother used to serve meals at banquets and I was at a couple of those and she was so pleasant and a hard worker. The last time I saw her was in 2014, if I remember correctly she came to our house in Bright's Grove, Ontario, with Gina, Chris, Art and Ursula for a visit. We sat outside in our backyard. She was so young at heart and very pleasant. We really enjoyed her visit with her family. I still have it pictured in my head just like it was yesterday. What a classy lady. Our condolences. Susan and Gerry Charlebois.
Joanna KurpanikDear Ursula, Gina, Joan, Veronica, Frank, and Your whole family, we are uniting with You in this very sad time of Your loss. Even if we live on the other side of world, we are also experiencing this loss. We'll remember her as often smiling, full of warm and love. Love towards You and husband Franciszek. We had a lucky oportunity to meet her in person when she was in Poland, and to see her via videocall in september. We will remember her in our prayers. Our condolences for whole family, Cousin Joanna Kurpanik with family and mother Stefania Śnieżek.
Dan and Laurie ReidFrank, our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Blessings, Dan and Laurie Reid
Michael Sanio, Grecia Matos, Jason/Courtney, Aaron and RenzoFrankie, Joanie, Ushii and Gina, We wish you and your families warm memories of your mom, Oma and Mutti. I have warm memories of love and friendship between mom and Mrs Pyka, your mom. They shared many experiences we could right books about. I know that I am a much better person for the love and attention that they shared with me and my family. I recall, I must have been 3 or 4 years old, your mom was caring for me, while my mother was at the hospital delivering Gabi I am sure, we were in the basement of your Quebec Street house, I was in the laundry tub having my bath. I can still smell the must scent! Best of love to you and your families The Washington DC Sanios
Moritz "I’m so grateful we had such friends as the Pyka’s and our small German circle was lucky for that. The proximity of our families provided strength and inclusion which we didn’t realize at the time was so important to our up bringing. I can still see (and hear) Mr. and Mrs. Pyka sitting in our backyard after dinner and hearing dad and Franz having a lively debate with much “grúndfálsch” being said, all the while mom and Frau Pyka distancing themselves from them and having their own conversation. We would be hanging around the treehouse and their get-togethers would last into the night. On occasion I remember someone saying everything after Midnight was grúndfálsch. So fortunate to have them in our lives. I’m sure I’m not the only one to remember these bygone times. We were terribly money-poor but we had a wealth of everything else and learned important lessons from this rich upbringing. Frau Pyka was a cornerstone for the family I’m sure and we were very lucky to have them so close on Quebec Street. Memories are curious and everyone has their own. Funny how they sometimes are different from one sibling to the other even though from the outside they are identical. We should be grateful for everything we have endured and enjoyed. Sweet tidings to Frau Pyka, we will be there one day not too long from now. Moritz
Irena GłówkaDrogie kuzynki i kuzynie łączymy się z Wami po stracie ukochanej Waszej Mamy. W naszych modlitwach będziemy zawsze o Niej pamiętać. Przesyłamy kondolencje dla całej rodziny kuzyn Stefan Główka z rodziną
LeaI am so sorry to hear of the suuden passing of your mother. I can tell that she left a lasting impact on all that knew her. Sending you all the love and husgs at this time. Lea
Monika OepkesI was sorry to recently hear that your mother passed away. I know this is a difficult time for all of the family. Please accept my deepest sympathy
Marta NieradzikDear Family, we extend our deepest sympathies to you. Those we hold closest to our hearts never truely leave us. Hildegard will live on in kindness and love she shared with us. May the soul of your mother be at peace with our Heavenly Father. We send love and prayers to your whole Family. Elżbieta and Bernard Bismor with daughters.
Walerian and Stefania PykaDear Children of Hilda Pyka. Please accept my heartfelt condolences on the death of our Mother, a very noble Mother. We feel sorry for you, because loss is irreplaceable. We also extend our condolences to close and distant relatives. The resulting void will be difficult to fill. However, time heals wounds. Even in Poland, it is also difficult to accept the fact that there is no longer a nice sister-in-law and aunt who earned common respect during her short visit in Poland. She will remain in our memory as: a close, warm, tactful and kind person which for a long period of time - over 50 years, shared with us by sending valuable parcels and money, selflessly supporting relatives in times of poor during the second half of the 20th century. Condolences are given by Walerian and Stefania Pyka as well as the Rak and Zawadzki families.
Heidi HoffmannThinking of your family at this sad time with memories of Hilde whom I only got to know in her later years at my mom's kaffeeklatches. Your mom/grandmother/aunt made a strong impression on me with her caring, wise and kind nature - I think of her as a second aunt. I'm consoled by the fact that she might be continuing those get-togethers with my mom, Irmgard and Gisela in her afterlife. Condolences from the Hoffmann family.
Klaus FischerVielen Dank für eure Nachricht, Herzliches Beileid an alle von Regina, Klaus, Jessica Stefan und Oma Karin. Es tut uns sehr leid das wir Hildegard nicht mehr persönlich kennen lernen konten. Corona hat uns leider unsere Reise zu Nichte gemacht. Aber Regina und ich, möchten trotzdem wenn wir wieder Reisen dürfen, euch alle kennenlernen und das Grab von Hildegard besuchen. Das ist uns sehr wichtig. Bis bald und viele liebe Grüße an alle aus der Familie. Translation: Thank you [Gina] for informing us about the sad news. Heartfelt condolences to all from Regina, Klaus, Jessica, Stefan, and grandma Karin. We are very sorry that we did not get to know Hilde more personally. Corona, unfortunately, made our trip to Canada impossible. However, Regina and I would like to visit when we are allowed to travel again so that we can all get to know you and visit the grave of Hildegard. This is very important to us.
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