Myrna (McFadyen) Fox
I graduated from grade twelve in 1958 and, like several of my classmates, I was able
to get a summer job at the hospital. This was very fortunate for me as, although the
wages were only $125.00 per month, I was able to earn enough money to get me to
the University of Alberta which allowed me to become a teacher — a career that has
lasted almost a life time for me. More importantly, though, I learned so much while
working at the hospital. Working with talented, skilled and caring people, such as
Mrs. Isabel Pinder, Mrs. Buzzie Pelechosky, Mrs. Corlea Zazalak, Mrs. Pearl
Bespalko, Mrs. Helga Cousineau, our four pioneer doctors, and numerous others, I
was able to learn so much about hospital routines and caring for the ill- I
particularly enjoyed working in the Pediatric wards with the little children. I also
learned a bit about “life in the real world” and I learned that I was not really
anxious to stay in the health care field — I wanted to be a teacher!
The hospital administrator at the time was Mr. Walter Saranchuk, the matron was
Miss Reid, and the receptionist was Mrs. Leatha Ramsbottom.
We worked eight hour shifts and had two days per week off. The work was a whole
new and valuable learning experience for me and, while we worked hard, we had
fun. There was never a dull moment and especially when we were able to work with
people like Helga, Janet, Elaine, and Albert — lots of laughs!
In 1955, I started my nursing career as District Nurse in Tulliby Lake, then got
married in 1957 and settled into farming and raising our family.
In 1975 I took a nursing refresher course and for the next 14 years worked parttime
in the Elk Point Hospital as well as some casual work in Uoydminster
Hospital and with Vermilion Homecare.
In 1987 I took 2 leaves of absence and went to Mexico with Mercy Ships medical
mission. Then in 1988 &1989 I again took leaves in order to work in health
centres in the Northwest Territories. I resigned from the hospital in December of
1989, to become a ‘paid tourist1, doing locum relief all across the Yukon, NWT
and Nunavut; a job I’m still enjoying to this day. Last year, I also went to
Nicaragua with a dental team.
Shouldn’t we say that nursing is just the best profession ever?
Rose (Danyluk) Woloshuk
I was born in 1931 and lived around Elk Point until 1955 when I got married. I had
worked at the Elk Point Hospital maybe a total of three years on and off. I started
as a ward aide, then went for my training as a nurse’s aid. Came back to Elk Point.
Left in 1955 to work in Bonnyville. Got married in 1955, moved to Huston, BC.
Worked for two months in Smithers hospital and then retired and started raising a
family. I have three sons and one daughter — Ray, Dennis, Gordon, and Susan. My
husband, Tony, the family, and I moved to prince Rupert where he went fishing.
Lived there for five years and moved to Surrey. Still here. Sending you these
pictures and, as age will have it, I can’t remember who they are — I am the one with
Jeannet (Boratynec) Sadownyk
Worked in nursing in 1959.
I grew up on a farm at Lake Eliza and am the fourth child of seven siblings.
Attended Lake Eliza School until the seventh grade, then attended High School in
Elk Point. As my secondary education, I chose nursing. I am a Licensed Practical
Nurse and have worked at St, Joseph’s General Hospital, Vegreville, since 1960 and
am still working.
Married to Ed Sadowynk and have two children — Karen and Kent. Karen is
married to Randy McDonald and they live in Calgary. They have three daughters —
Heather, Meghan, and Jillian. Kent is married to Shelley Singer and they have two
sons — Cole and Lucas - and reside in St. Albert
Worked as Ward Aide from 1961 -1965(66).
Marie Ann (Hlnshak) Ewasiuk
Worked from September 1969 to April 1970.
1. The times we spent at Peggy’s house — you took me in as though I were family.
2. Working with al the staff at the hospital - we had a good group.
3. Though maybe not the fondest but interesting none the less - taking care of all
the little native kids.
I moved to Edmonton after leaving Elk point Hospital. Worked at the Royal Alex
Hospital as an OR Tech, for a couple of years and then on a Medical teaching Unit.
In 1972 1 married Lawrence Ewasiuk. Moved to Calgary in January 1980 due to a
job transfer for Lawrence. Worked casual relief (night shift) at the Calgary
General Hospital. Returned to Edmonton after fourteen years, again due to a job
transfer. No longer working but keeping busy as a homemaker. Have no family -
just a sweet little dog.
Dopheide 27, 7873CC Odoom ,
The Netherlands. 11-3-2008
Being a nurse at Elk Point Municipal Hospital was such an amazing and friendly
I’d trained in strict Scottish hospitals and after a short time of being fully trained read a tiny
advertisement in “The Scotsman “ a national newspaper, asking for nurses to work in Elk
Point.... so took the ship to Montreal and then hop, hop to Alberta with every Province
becoming colder and colder !
My story is ... One morning when looking after a little Cree Indian baby bom the previous
day.. I was shocked to see a dull blue patch on the baby’s buttocks.. and as I had quite a firm
grasp I thought “Oh dear, what have I now done ? “
I was really feeling a bit scared and told Dr. Weigerinck about “this bruising “.. and then of
course her answer was that it was the Mongolian spot.... I was so ignorant and had much to
Later at an Esperanto congress in Copenhagen met Henk van Dalen and after some time
came over to Amsterdam .Last year we celebrated our 40 th wedding anniversary.
In Amsterdam I continued nursing in the various city hospitals, and for quite a few years was
a tutor always combining this with ward work and helping new generations of students
always of course with “my interesting “accent ...
... and now for many years am living in this attractive little village in the Northgmpart of the
I wish you all a happy reunion,.... Sending friendly greetings , Margot van Dalen.
Frances (Tomkow) Moneta
In the sixties it seemed that all the farmer’s wives went out looking for jobs to help
with the financial situation at home. I was no exception. One day, as I was grocery
shopping, I ran into a neighbour who stopped to chat Through this conversation, I
learned that the hospital was looking for help. He told me they were looking for
people to work in the nursing department on a train on the job basis. Seriously
considering the possibility for a few days, I decided to put in my application and to
give it a try. A short time later I received a notification to come to work for a three
month trial period. I started work in June 1968. From the beginning it was tough,
with new things and routines to learn, but, with a lot of encouragement and help
from experienced and administrative staff, extra courses, seminars, and day
lectures, I managed to hang around for twenty years in acute and extended care full
time, and extended care for another two years part time. I retired in September
1995 and, during my working years, I have learned a lot, enjoyed working with my
co-workers, and would like to express my gratitude to all the people who helped me
so much, and to those who had enough faith in me to give me that chance. I have
come away from my job feeling good about my accomplishments and hopefully I
was instrumental in bringing comfort and cheer into someone’s life during their stay
in the hospital. I have also learned that perseverance, co-operation, dedication,
tolerance, and respect all factor into the work place.
My husband and I still live on the farm south of Elk Point and we will be celebrating
out fifty-second anniversary on June 21,2008. We have four wonderful children, inlaw
children, and our seven grandchildren.
It would be wonderful to meet some of the personnel I have worked with and others
I have never set eyes on. Best wishes to all!
Iryne (Kozak) Buck
I had my education in the Middle Creek School after
which I applied and was accepted to the Elk Point
Municipal Hospital. I worked there for five years.
Miss Holter was the Matron.
Married Mike Buck, lived in Heinsburg,
then Lindberg. Now I am retired and live
at Fort George Manor in Elk Point
Mary (Ference) Lychak
Graduated from Elk Point High School in 1962.
Graduated from the Misericordia School of Nursing in 1965.
Nursed in Red Deer, Elk Point, and Myrnam.
Have not nursed since our last son was born in 1980.
Married Henry Lychak in 1966. We have a beautiful family of four sons (all born in
the Elk Point Hospital), their spouses, and six adorable grandchildren. All our sons
attended post secondary school in various careers. We lived on a farm north of
Derwent until 2001 at which time we built a home in Vermilion. Henry and I have
downsized in farming, allowing more time to enjoy and help our family, friends,
Church activities, ice curling, fishing, golfing, travelling, and volunteering. We
count our blessings.
Mary (Coates) Derewynka
I was bom in the Elk Point Municipal Hospital, but I grew up in the Onion Lake Area
I took my Certified Nursing Aide (Now LPN) training in 1954 at the School for Nursing
Aides in Calgary, Alberta. I graduated in October 1954.
I started work at the Elk Point Municipal Hospital in the middle of December 1954 and I
worked there until the end of February 1961 with two short maternity leaves in between
in early 1958 and late 1959 and early I960..
I worked on men’s, ladies, pediatrics and maternity. In 1955 and 1966 I worked in CSR,
Surgery and the Labour room.
I married Mike Derewynka on November 2,1956. He passed away ion April 3, 1989.
I now have eight (8) grandchildren
On March 01,19611 started work for the doctors in the Elk Point Clinic, where I worked
until it closed at the end of January 1981,
I came back to work in admitting at the Elk Point Hospital in the middle of December
1989 and am still there today.
Mary (Coates) Derewynka
Sue graduated from nursing at Kelsey Institute in Saskatoon in I96I. Her first
fears as an RM were spent at the Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon on an
oncology unit. After marrying Dave in 1983, an engineering Job with Westmin
Resources brought the pair to Elk Point. Sue wotted at the hospital form 1984-
1988. During that time both of their children, Jordan and Robyn, were born at
the hospital The oil patch called Dave to Calgary in 1988 For the following 14
years Sue worked in family practice. During that time she became involved in a
primary health care project. That project began a 10 year journey in nursing
telepractice with the last 5 years as a team leader at Calgary Health Link. Sue
has recently taken a position as a liaison with Calgary Foothills Primary Care
Years worked at the Elk Point Hospital 1966-1985
Coming in from the farm, I began working at the Elk Point
Hospital in Housekeeping, in 1966. We moved into town in 1967
and I continued to work there until my retirement in 1985.
Through the years I have always enjoyed my garden and flowers,
and still continue to do so. I also spent a lot of time with my 3
Grandchildren. In recent years I have also been able to enjoy my 7
Great Grandchildren. They enjoy coming to see me and very much
enjoy having them. Besides gardening and my flowers, I also enjoy
going to Bingo a couple days a week.
Since retiring I have just taken it easy and enjoy what each day
My family has a long history with the Elk Point hospital. My great grandma, Lillian
Edwards worked with Dr. F. G. Miller; my grandma, Margaret McGinnis was a graduate
of one of Alberta’s first combined lab/xray programs; my mom, Jean McGinnis, worked
as a ward aide and LPN.
My first job at the hospital was in dietary, working with Pearl Anderson, Jean Kozicky,
Doris Capjack, Pauline Pankiw, in the day when staff went through the kittchen to serve
themselves buffet style. I also worked in housekeeping under the direction of Elsie
Oryschuk. Out-of-town staff was allowed to rent rooms at the nurses’ residence sand I
know that we kept staff entertained with our comings and goings.
I originally intended to be a medical librarian but the work experience at the hospital
prompted me to pursue a nursing career. I completed the Royal Alexandra Hospital
training program and graduated in 1979.1 worked 2 years at the hospital. H think rural
generalist nursing practice should be a specialty when a nurse works all areas -
emergency, obstetrics, pediatrics, geriatrics, surgery, etc. I learned from some of the best
— Pat Soldan, Jennie Shmyr, Helen Skolarchuk.
In 1981,1 went to work as a public health nurse in St Paul but continued to pick up the
odd casual shift at Elk Point until I no longer felt competent I found my rnursing niche in
public health. I obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing in 1995 and continue to
work as a public health nurse. I’ve come full circle, working in Elk Point again.
Florence Drobot (TRACH)
I started work at the hospital in July of 1964 to 1966.1 left to take a hairdressing
course in Edmonton, which lasted about 6 months. Then I came back to work at
hospital until May of 1969.1 got married in June of 1969. Then we were blessed
with 3 children. 2boys and a girl. Once our children were in school I finished my
hairdressing in St Paul I received my certificate in 1978. Did a bit of hairdressing
then worked at different restaurants, custodian at the schooled worked at the
lodge as a cook and housekeeping. Now I am hairdressing at the lodge. And now
we’re blessed with 7 grand children. 4boys and 3 girls. We are very fortunate to have
them all very close home.
It will be GREAT to see all the staff of the old hospital once again.
Hope everyone will enjoy this occasion as it is a lot of work for the organizers to do
it for us alt I’ll bet they are having a lot of fun in the process.
Sue has two grown children, one living in Winnipeg and the other in Vancouver.
She enjoys rock climbing and wotting out with Dave, her husband of 25 fears.
Hi my name is Sandra Gushnowski (Maas)
I believe I started to work at the Elk Point Hospital at the young age of fourteen(1965).
My very first job. I was going to make some money. I was hired to work in the diet kitchen on
the main floor. My hours of work were from 1600 hours to 1800 hours weekdays and split
shift on weekends. I remember running home from school, quickly changing into my starched
green uniform (that could stand alone I am sure) and then running across the street to the
hospital. My shift started very fest as my first duty was to deliver the breakfast, dinner or supper
trays to all the patients. The trays came up to the floor via a lift(l recall four trays at a time).
You had to be fest because the food would get cold, not only that but, you would get
behind on all your other chores. Once the trays were delivered I would then assist those patients that
were unable to feed themselves. I always felt that I wouldn't get all my work done on time.
I will never forget the times my mom (Peggy Maas) was on the same shift
as I was because she always found time to help me out She said she didn't need a break.
I don't think I ever thanked her for that Thanks mom. Then it was time to pick all the trays up,
clean them off, put them back on the lift and send them down to the kitchen - four trays at a
time. The last thing to do was to make sure the diet kitchen was left clean. My other duties
included cleaning the doctors lounge and also making them coffee - poor doctors I still can't
make good coffee. Then came the most dreaded job of all - sterilizing the urinal bottles. I
remember wanting to vomit every time I opened the machine, but I don't think I ever did.
That was my first job, and I believe that it formed a solid base on which I stood and still stand today.
I am very proud of my strong roots. Thank you to my family, Elk Point Hospital and all the staff
who helped me achieve my goals.
I have been married to Edd for 37 years, have 2 boys and 3 beautiful grandchildren. Edd and I reside
in Innisfree AB
I worked at Elk Point Municipal Hospital from Dec 1983 - April 1999. I started work
under the direction of Ed Soldan who was maintenance supervisor. When Ed retired I
became maintenance supervisor. I worked with Rob Walker and Les Holme. During
those years the long term care facility was built and the present hospital under went major
renovations. I really appreciated the expertise of Rob and Les during that time.
During the time I worked at the Municipal Hospital under an Administrator and the
Health Centre as part of a Region, I am convinced that the old system was far superior.
Cost wise it was much more efficient. Problems were solved within the facility instead of
going out of the area to two or more supervisors.
During my years at the hospital I thoroughly enjoyed working with all the staff. Since my
retirement I continue to do relief work in the maintenance department and still enjoy all
the staff and the fun times of laughs and jokes.
Thanks to everyone for making my job easier and more enjoyable.
Ema (Mills) Holliday
I came to Elk Point Municipal Hospital, with Eleanor (Olson) Holliday as graduate, not
registered, nurses in February 1956 to May 1957 We returned to Edmonton in April 1956
to write our KN’s. Less than a month after we started work all, except Eleanor, myself
and one other nurse, went on strike and left for Edmonton on the morning Greyhound.
We managed to keep the hospital going until they returned a day or two later. What a fast
responsibilty orientation we received.
Work and life in Elk Point was something we had never imagined but learned to love. The
work was intense but rewarding. Eleanaor and I left in May 1957 to get married (a double
wedding as we married brothers). Tom and I spent the next 5 years in Calgary and had 3
children. In Sept 1962 we moved back to Elk Point and I went back to work at the
hospital What a busy hospital!!! 52 beds and at times as many as 75 to 80 patients.
There were patients in every nook and cranny and sometimes 2 -3 babies in one bed. We
did deliveries, all surgeries and emergencies. Patients arrived at all hours of the day and
night and the doctors were always on calk It was busy but we managed to have lots of
I was Director of Nursing from 1966 to 1972 and loved every minute of it. We had a
wonderful staff and that included nursing, lab, kitchen, housekeeping, maintenance and
administration. Everyone worked as one big family and it was a great atmosphere for the
staff the patients and the doctors.
I left nursing in !972 to work for Dr. Charles Anderson in his medical clinic, but went back
nursing in 1976 to OR and emergency at St. Theresa Hospital in St. Paul and then back to
work for Dr. Anderson. During the rest of my working career I worked in a dental office.
Constituency assistant for Deborah Grey, MP, and an orthodontists office. I officially
retired in 1999 but continued to do part time work at the ortho office and then at Kuhn’s
Antique store to the present time.
We have been blessed with 3 great kids and 6 grandchildren with twins expected in June
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the wonderfol people I worked with
dining my days at the Elk Point Hospital You made my job so much easier and you will
never know how much I did and do appreciate all of you. God bless you.
HAVE A GREAT TIME AT THE REUNION.