With the heaviest of hearts, we announce the passing of Daniel Thomas Onichuk, age 59, of Fort Frances, Ont. He passed away peacefully at Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre on Sunday, April 28, 2019 with family by his side.
Dan was born in Fort Frances on Nov. 26, 1959 to Thomas Tony and Ann Marie (Hnatiuk) Onichuk. He was raised alongside his three sisters, Toni, Jeanie and Sandy on North Minnie Avenue.
While attending Fort Frances High School and working at Safeway, he was passionately involved in the labour movement in the 1970s. This led to Dan accepting work with the United Food and Commercial Workers Union in the early 1980s. His travelling soul brought him overseas and opened up a new chapter in his life when he started a family and adopted his first daughter, Ania Onichuk (1985).
In April 1991, he fell in love with Denise Hrymak and they were married on April 16, 1994, in Nova Scotia. Together they added five more beautiful children to their family: Moreta Daniele (1992), Carrramaena Maria (1994), Thomas Tony (1997), Joseph Michael (1997) and Devlin Peter (1998).
Dan loved his six children more than anything in the world which led to him making the difficult decision to end his almost 20 year career with UFCW in 2001. He and Denise moved the five youngest children back to Fort Frances to raise them on his family homestead, “just like he was.”
Though his careers changed paths throughout the years, from construction to mayor of Fort Frances, his passions did not. He loved talking politics or sports, especially the Leafs, Blue Jays and Vikings. However, Dan's greatest passion was undoubtedly music. Whether he was jamming in the studio or singing on stage with the band, this is when you saw him in his glory.
Dan retired at the age of 50 and these last nine years had been some of the busiest. From starting North Minnie Vineyards, the expansions to his beloved pond, and all the other “puttering around” in between. He filled his heart with even more love when welcoming two beautiful grandsons into the world, Jaxon Sousa (2016) and Wyatt Onichuk (2018).
Dan will be remembered by all for his amazing outlook and the passion he had for life. His heart-warming smile and beautiful laugh will live on through his children and grandchildren. We all know what he would say to us if he could, “Don't worry, be happy.”
Dan is predeceased by his father, Thomas Tony Onichuk; and his grandmothers, grandfathers and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins.
He is survived by his mother, Ann Onichuk; his wife, Denise, and children, Ania (Mike Sousa and grandson Jax), Moreta (Geoff Handley), Carrramaena, Thomas (Natasha Yarmovich and grandson Wyatt), Joseph, and Devlin; sisters, Toni Onichuk (nieces, Charlee Ann and Georgee Girl), Jeanie Onichuk, and Sandy Mahon (Lawrence and nephews, Chase and Cole).
He will be greatly missed by his large family, aunts, uncles, cousins, in-laws, nieces, nephews, and of course, his many friends.
Honourary pallbearers will be his three sons, Thomas, Joseph, Devlin; his grandsons, Jaxon and Wyatt; and Gord McQuarrie and Eric Onichuk.
A service for Daniel Onichuk will take place on Friday, May 3 at Zion Lutheran Church at 3 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, the family has asked that you send donations to the Trillium Gift of Life Foundation.
As Daniel stressed the importance of being an organ donor to his family, please also consider becoming a donor in his memory.
Online condolences may be made in care of www.greenfuneralhomefortfrances.com.