Wanda Stepien: April 29, 1925–July 30, 2007

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      With great sadness, the family of Wanda Stepien announces the passing, at home, of a wonderful mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. For more than three years, Wanda fought a courageous battle against a devastating neurological disorder. During that time, her indomitable spirit never surrendered.

      Born Wanda Filipecki in Warsaw, she was a member of the Polish Resistance during the Second World War and survived the brutal repression of the Warsaw Uprising. Later, as a prisoner of war, she endured the Allied bombing of Dresden. These experiences would focus her will and determination to build a better life for her future family.

      After the liberation of Europe, Wanda married Tadeusz Stepien. They went on to have children in West Germany (Halina), England (Yolanda), Brazil (Chris), and, finally, Canada (Sandy), where they settled permanently in 1955. A highly skilled bridge player as well as a voracious reader, Wanda had a keen interest in politics and was always up-to-date with world affairs. But the real focus of her life was her family.

      Wanda was predeceased by her husband, Ted, in 1984. She is survived by daughter Halina (Michael Connolly), grandchildren Arlene, Angela, and Wayne, and great-granddaughter Bronwyn; daughter Yolanda (Dan McLeod), grandchildren Sonya (Usman Majeed) and Matthew, and great-granddaughters Aysha and Sahara; son Chris (Debbie Graham) and grandchildren Luke and Anna; daughter Sandy (Bruce Lupick) and grandchildren Travis, Nicholas, and Mallory. Wanda also leaves her brother Zygmunt in Rio de Janeiro, his wife, Lourdes, their eight children, and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

      Our special thanks to Catherine Stephen and Gloria Sevilla. In her final year, your love and dedication made all the difference.

      Wanda, your valiant struggle has finally ended in peace. We will miss you more than words can say.

      In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation at www.jdrf.ca/ or by calling 604-320-1937.

      For details regarding the memorial service, e-mail sandy.stepien@gmail.com.