We are sad to announce the passing of our Dad, Alexander George Zubick, in his sleep on August 23, 2020.
He is predeceased by our Mom, Katherine Lillian Zubick, and his siblings; Mary, Ann, Fran, Jean, Marge, and John. He will be greatly missed by his sons; Peter (Kate), Brian (Cheryl), Stephen (Sandy), Gary (Racheal), his grandchildren; Rachel, Natasha, Jordan, and Cole, and his many nieces and nephews.
Al was born on March 2, 1934 to John and Daisy Zubick, the youngest of seven children, on a farm in Hagersville, Ontario. He grew up with chores to do before and after school, which, apparently, was an uphill walk both ways, through ten feet of snow in the winter. In high school Al played basketball and ran track and field, and at one point was considered a draft prospect by the Detroit Red Wings!
Al’s first job after graduating from high school was as a clerk at the nearby army base, for the princely sum of $1050, per year. He also worked as a farm labourer, worked on a road construction crew, and, while working for Trans Canada Airlines at Malton Airport saw Canada’s AVRO Arrow on some of it’s test flights. In 1956 he moved to Hamilton, Ontario and found a job with The Steel Company of Canada (Stelco), starting as a clerk and working his way up to foreman in the wire mill. While at Stelco he coached the ladies softball team to the Hamilton City Championships, and golfed and bowled in company leagues.
It was in 1957 that he was talked into a blind date with a nurse from Truro, Nova Scotia, Kaye Waugh, to go smelt fishing. Smelt fishing in Ontario is something you do in early April, at night. Because the fishing was good Al didn’t pay too much attention to his date, until morning, when it dawned on him that, even after an eight hour shift at the hospital, an hour drive to the fishing spot, three hours fishing in the wind and the rain in the middle of the night, and an hour drive home, Kaye was still beautiful! “Love at first sight”, he said. They struggled to find time together with Kaye working three shifts at the hospital and Al working two shifts at the steel mill. Sometimes it was just for coffee as one was coming off shift and the other was going on. Al proposed to Kaye in July of ’57 (at first she said, “No, why would I?”, but she thought he’d asked “Are you mad at me”), and on November 15 of that year they got married. Shortly after that they started their family. They had four boys; Peter, Brian, Stephen, and Gary.
Then Al took a job out west and they all moved to British Columbia. A short-lived stint with Tree Island Steel led to a sales job with Buckerfield’s (selling chicken feed), driving a truck for Dairyland (delivering milk and ice cream), and to a position at Seagram’s Distilleries. He would spend the rest of his working life in the liquor business. After several years at Seagram’s, Al moved to the Liquor Distribution Branch of the provincial government, and after several more years moved to Corby Distilleries. Al worked for Corby until his retirement in 1999. Throughout this time he continued to be active with his own sports; playing for Seagram’s fastball team, curling, and golf, coaching his sons in hockey and baseball, and involving himself in local and federal politics, the Glenayre Community Association, the local Boy Scouts movement, and local minor sports organizations. Unfortunately, shortly after Al retired, his wife of 42 years, Kaye, lost her battle with heart disease.
After the loss of Kaye, and due to his own health issues, Al was somewhat less active in the community, but still managed to find himself on the board of directors of the Port Moody Legion Branch #119, and to participate in various clubs at Marlborough House, where he moved in August of 2011.
Al will be remembered by his friends and coworkers as a friendly, hard-working, generous man with time for anyone. Dad will be remembered for his largesse with his Legion meat draw winnings, his open door, and his unswerving support of all our pursuits. Grampa will be remembered for his Cheez Whiz toast, his KD lunches and for being a fixture at their softball, hockey, and lacrosse games.
We would like to thank the staff of Mountainview Neighbourhood at Nicola Lodge in Port Coquitlam, who looked after Dad for the last year and a half of his life.
No service is planned at this time. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Eagle Ridge or Royal Columbian Hospital Foundations.