Sam died peacefully in his sleep after an exemplary life in which his glass was always more than half full. He marvelled often at having achieved this milestone and he viewed every day as a gift with all life’s experiences as true blessings.
He was born in Nevolany, Macedonia. He came to Canada as a young boy with his mother Magda and his brother Efto to join his father Philip who had come earlier. His sister Sophie was born later. He grew up as a proud “Cabbagetown Kid” and later “East Yorker” in “the Greatest Country in the World”.
He was married for almost 60 years to his beloved Soula (Anne). Their relationship was the fruit of a familial arrangement but blossomed into an enviable partnership through devoted love, patience and humour. He often reminisced about the wonderful years of travel, cottage times, friendships and adventures they shared. He always said he was only successful because he had his dear wife by his side. They were soulmates.
Sam was a loving and proud Father and Father in Law to Larry (Judy), and Vicky (Richard Lyles) as well as a much loved Dedo to Andrew (Julia) and Emily (Ian). His cherished grandchildren brought him endless joy and their challenges and accomplishments were his to support and celebrate.
Sam valued hard work and he exemplified that ethic early as an owner/partner of a restaurant at the tender age of 16. He went on to own two highly regarded and much loved establishments known as the Classic Lunch at Jarvis and Gerrard and Tiffany’s Steakhouse by the Airport. He did a stint in the Toronto school board so he could spend more evenings with his young family, recognizing the long hours required in hospitality business.
Sam was an organizer extraordinaire and he often gathered family and friends of all ages for ball games, fishing, muckers, cards and back yard barbecues complete with dancing. He was honest, generous and humble except when it came to showcasing his prowess at memorization of the US Capitals. He was happy to challenge anyone to “stump Sam” and no one ever did!
He was a people person by nature and was happy to initiate conversation with all whom he encountered. It was not uncommon for him to befriend a stranger on a bench at the mall while his wife was given free-reign to “shop ‘til you drop“.
He took pride in preserving his independence and loved to share detailed recipe secrets with anyone with a listening ear. He was fastidious, kept his condo “religious looking” and was pleased to show it off. As well he was at the ready with a treat for anyone who might pop in. He was a superb host. He will be forever loved and missed by us all.
Here’s to you, “My Good Man”!