Barbara Stanich (nee Markovich), resident of Rycroft, AB, passed away on Tuesday, February 18, 2020, in Grande Prairie, AB, at the age of 87 years.
Barbara was born the sixth of nine children to John and Mary Markovich in their family farmhouse just south of Rycroft, on March 4, 1932. She attended school in Rycroft. At the age of fourteen, she was involved in a farm accident which caused her to spend four months in the University Hospital in Edmonton. During her convalescence, she was required to help tend to young victims of the 1946 polio outbreak, an experience that crystallized her compassion for others for the rest of her life.
After her recovery, she returned home to continue to help with chores on the farm and finish high school. In 1951, she married Andrew Stanich. Together they ran and grew a mixed farm (only a mile and a half from where she was born), and raised five children. Side by side with Andrew, Barbara operated equipment, raised livestock, milked cows, and did all the other jobs required to make their farm successful. In the early 80’s, they sold off the cattle to concentrate on growing grains and oilseeds, though she would often drop the hint to her adult children, “You should get some cows.”
Even though there was always plenty of farm work to do, Barbara had a deep artistic side. She painted with oils, watercolours, and made pencil sketches which are treasured by friends and family.
After Andrew’s death in 2011, she remained on the farm and created a beautiful yard and garden. She was active in St. Peter and Paul’s Catholic Church in Rycroft, and in the CWL. She always made sure that the flowers in the church were in top form. She also volunteered at long term care in Spirit River. She loved the gatherings that would happen at her home, and she treasured the many occasions when grandchildren and great-grandchildren would drop in for a visit with her. Barbara will always be remembered for her care and concern for others, her hospitality at home (coffee and cake was always on), her dedication to her Catholic church community, and her beautiful flowers.
Barbara is survived by her brothers Paul and Nick, son Donald Stanich, daughter Victoria (Ed) Denis, son James (Iris) Stanich, and daughter in-law Brenda (Kosabeck) Stanich. She leaves eleven grandchildren and fourteen great-grandchildren, each one deeply loved by ‘GG’.
She was predeceased by her husband of 59 years Andrew; son Kenneth; daughter Marjorie (Peter Janssen); sisters: Anne Hemmingway, Matilda Loroff, Edith Barich, and Mary Markovich; and brothers Tony and John.
Prayer Service was held Friday, February 21, 2020 at 7:00pm at St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Rycroft (4528 50 St.).
Funeral Mass was held on Saturday, February 22, 2020 at 1:00pm at St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church. Interment followed at Old Mission Cemetery. A luncheon followed for family and friends at the Rycroft Ag Centre.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church – Renovation Fund (Box 189, Rycroft, AB, T0H 3A0), or Sorrentino’s Compassion House (10909 76 Avenue, Edmonton, AB, T6G 0J6).
Condolences may be sent by visiting www.oliversfuneralhome.com.