The Grandmothers::Lena Kucharuk
I am attaching a few photos of my Baba as well as 4 pages she wrote about her life. It will likely be hard to read since it is scanned but hopefully you can get enough information. She passed away in 2014 at the age of 89 years old. I have more pictures if I dig around but these are my favorites. I also have more information regarding our family history if you wish. My Baba, Lena Kuchark (born Helen Hawrylenko) was the grand-daughter of Ivan and Anna Hawrylenko, one of the "first families" of Ukrainian immigrants to come over. They were part of Dr. Joseph Oleskiw's group which is memorialized at the Ukrainian village just outside of Edmonton.
As you read through her pages you will see that she was much like a single mom as my Gido was always gone and working in Edson at the sawmill or at a meat packing plant in Edmonton. She tried so hard to keep the farm in St. Lina going and take care of the children. 7 in total were born but only 4 grew to make it past a year and onward to adulthood. She was tough and worked hard, even into "retirement" she was always on the go, cooking, cleaning, babysitting me and helping at the local Ukrainian Orthodox church and hall. Sounds ordinary but I've been up to the land where she would have been on the homestead alone with the children during the hard winters and that’s not something I could do. She poured energy into planting crops only to have them lost to frost or hail and times were incredibly bleak. She did talk fondly about friends and community gatherings, how people would share resources and help where they could.
~ Tami Grondines
Comments are closed.