September 25, 2021
1945-2021 ~ Esther Helen Skrypiczajko passed away Saturday, September 25, 2021 after a two year journey with cancer. She met this last chapter of life as she did earlier ones: with optimism, courage, hard work, good humour and gratitude. She was determined to live as long as possible and make the best of it.
Esther was born in Canal Flats, BC in 1945 to Mildred and Helmer Holmlund which gave her deep roots in the East Kootenays and Sweden. Her memories of growing up included many great times with extended family and friends, but never enough books and a bit too much time deep in the woods fishing.
Destined to be a teacher from a young age, she played school after school and became the school secretary in high school. She got her teaching degree from UBC, then ventured north to Granisle to start her career in a two room schoolhouse.
There she met her future husband and they soon relocated to Penticton. Her career took a pause when her children were young, but then continued with 26 years teaching and volunteering in the district.
Esther had two children: Marya (Olindo) and Tim. She raised them as a single mom in the days when there weren’t too many single parents, but never uttered a complaint. Later she enjoyed being a grandparent to Noah. Pets were also always a part of her family.
Never one to be idle, she filled her free time with volunteering for numerous community groups, reading and being out in nature. Esther was a dedicated gardener (and part-time farmer in her retirement years), bird and wildflower lover, keen hiker and general outdoor adventurer. She also enjoyed socializing, wine tasting and travelling when an opportunity arose.
She will be deeply missed by her family, including her brother John, and friends. All are grateful for the excellent care she received over the last two years at the Penticton hospital and finally at Hospice House.
In memory of her generous spirit, please consider a donation to SOS Medical Foundation or the Penticton Hospice Society.
A celebration of life will be held at a future date.
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