November 23, 1942 – October 12, 2019
Edna Elizabeth Konik, age 76 of Nanaimo, British Columbia, passed away peacefully on the morning of Saturday, October 12th, 2019. She was born to the late Richard and Luella DuWors on November 23, 1942 in Boston, Massachusetts. She is survived by her two children, Larissa Beata and Robert Michael, as well as her siblings, George, Richard, Helen, Robert, and Patrick. She was predeceased by her former husband, Walter.
Edna spent the first years of her life on a farm in Ellsworth, Maine where she and her mother, Luella, and Aunt Ruth lived for the duration of World War II while her father, Richard, served in the United States Navy protecting merchant shipping. After the war she saw a peripatetic existence living in Providence, Rhode Island, Alliance, Ohio, and Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, before finally moving with her family (now including three of her brothers, Richard, George, and Robert, and her sister, Helen) to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan in 1958. In Saskatoon she completed high school and then attended the University of Saskatchewan, majoring in French and History. As a marked beauty in a different era, she served at the U of S both as a Campus Princess (1961) and the Campus Queen (1962). Towards the end of her time as an undergraduate, a chronic nosebleed sent her to the emergency room where she met a young doctor and her future husband, Walter.
She spent all of her adult life living in western Canada. There she raised her two children and in anticipation of the ending of her marriage, went to law school at the University of Alberta, obtaining her law degree in 1976. She practiced law, working for most of her legal career as a Crown Prosecutor, first in Wetaskiwin and then in Calgary.
While the law was her career, her greatest loves were her children, hiking in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, her cats, her friends, and painting. The last of these she retook up after she retired in 2004. She had shown artistic potential as a young woman and had studied watercolours with the American painter, Bruce Mitchell. She delightedly returned to this earlier passion and took great pleasure in traveling to picturesque spots, both rural and urban, in Italy, France, and Spain, setting up shop for a number of weeks, and painting the local environs.
Tired of tolerating the cold, dry Calgary winters, she moved in 2010 to early springs in Parksville on Vancouver Island. There she continued her painting and actively and joyfully participated in Parksville’s many artistic communities, including the local chapters of the Federation of Canadian Artists and the DeCosmos Fine Arts Society.
In 2011, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She successfully beat back this disease and in the course of doing so gained a new perspective on her life and its finiteness. The wisdom so acquired allowed her to confront a diagnosis of late stage ovarian cancer in early 2018 with fearlessness and a determination to maintain the quality of her life in the course of its treatment.
A Celebration of Life will be held at 1:00pm on Monday, December 2nd at the McMillan Arts Center in Parksville. Edna was devoted to her cats and was incredibly appreciative that the Qualicum Cat Rescue was able to find a new home for her cat, Little Girl. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to this worthy charity.
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