May 27, 1931 – April 20, 2021
It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our loving mother, grandmother, and great grandmother at the age of 89, 5 weeks shy of her 90th birthday. Viola’s parents were Fred and Nelly (Elasoff) Pepin of Grand Forks, and with sisters Mary and Mabel, they lived along the west side of the Kettle River near the Nursery Bridge.
When she was 17, she met a young man named Mike Strukoff, who lived along the Kettle River on the west side of Grand Forks. After a year long courtship, they married on Dec. 27, 1949.
They soon decided to build a home along the Kettle River not far away from the Carson border crossing. As Mike pursued his logging truck and other business activities, Viola looked after the home, the garden and three busy young boys.
Viola’s quiet and easy going manner helped expand her interests beyond her family and home. She enjoyed her independence, proud of the privilege to drive a vehicle, and thrived connecting with relatives and friends at restaurants.
She also enjoyed shopping, especially with her sisters. Viola was often described as a kind, soft spoken, stylish, lovely lady. She was well read, had a passion for knowledge, and kept current with local and world affairs.
As an active USCC member, she supported her children and grandchildren in Sunday School and Youth Choir activities. She enjoyed singing with the Friendship Choir, and loved the socializing and camaraderie the Choir provided.
Mike’s retirement allowed for travel in Canada and the US in their RV and on several cruises. A highlight for Viola was the foliage and flowers of Hawaii.
Following Mike’s unexpected passing in 2012, Viola moved into Silver Kettle Village Seniors Residence, making many new friends and reconnecting with several childhood friends.
After almost 9 years of living in Silver Kettle, Viola moved into Ivy House this past January, receiving more personal care as her health declined.
The family wishes to thank the many individuals at Silver Kettle Village, particularly in Ivy House, who helped Mum in multiple ways, and Lana Makortoff and the many Home Care attendants who assisted Mum with her personal care.
Thank you to Dr. Lewis and his staff for their many years of health service. Thank you to: Grand Forks Funeral Home for arrangements, The Kootenay Men’s Group for the hand crafted casket, the gravediggers for preparing Viola’s final resting spot at Sion Cemetery, JJ Verigin for your kind words, and to Uncle Bill and Aunt Liz Pepin for supporting the family with the service.
Viola was predeceased by her parents Fred and Nelly, her sisters Mabel and Mary, and her beloved husband Mike of 62 years of marriage.
She is survived by son Michael (Marilyn), son Brian (Sherry), daughter-in-law Bonnie (Paul W.), and son Paul (Natalie).
She leaves behind 5 grandsons: Nicolai (Jenn) and great grandson Lincoln, Tolek (Megan), Evan, Oliver, Anton, one granddaughter, Marissa, and numerous relatives and friends.
We trust you are in a happier place with Dad, your sisters and parents, and many other relatives and friends. We wish your soul eternal peace and joy in God’s heavenly Kingdom.
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