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WONNECK, Susan Elizabeth (nee Raleigh)

December 12, 1958 – May 14, 2012

It is with terrible sadness and broken hearts that we announce that Sue Wonneck lost her life to breast cancer on Monday, May 14, 2012. She died peacefully, surrounded by her family.

Sue lived with cancer for over four years with extraordinary dignity, grace and courage, and through her example became an inspiration to all who knew her. While she felt deeply the terrible losses that accompany this disease, she had a remarkable capacity to still find joy and things to be grateful for – when she could no longer hike and ski, she was grateful she could still walk; when she could no longer walk, she was grateful she could still play her banjo and sing; when she could no longer sing and play, she took joy from the sound of birds, the play of wind in the leaves and the feel of sunshine on her face. Her enthusiasm for life and interest in others led to many rewarding and enduring friendships, and she found great joy in connecting deeply with others. Her ability to live a full life in the face of her illness will be part of her enduring legacy to her family.

Sue was born in Winnipeg, MB and graduated from the University of Manitoba with a Bachelor of Nursing in 1981. She met the love of her life (Mark) in 1983 the first time either had ever attended a session of the Winnipeg Folk Music Club and married in 1989. After their first son (Luke) was born, Mark and Sue settled in Calgary in 1993. Their second son (Aidan) followed shortly thereafter. Sue loved folk music, accompanying her beautiful and clear voice with guitar and more recently banjo. She referred to playing claw-hammer banjo as her “happy place”. She loved being in nature – hiking, canoeing, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing with Mark by her side brought her such joy.

Sue is survived by her loving husband Mark; precious sons Luke and Aidan; father Don; brother Jack; mother-in-law Margaret; father-in-law Arvid; brothers-in-law Ron and John; sisters-in-law, Karen, Beth and Joan; and nieces and nephews James, William, Julia, Matthew, Neta, Paul and Carolyn. Sue was predeceased by her mother Janice.

A Celebration of Sue’s Life will be held at McINNIS & HOLLOWAY’S Fish Creek Chapel (14441 Bannister Road S.E.) on Saturday, June 2, 2012 at 2:00 p.m. Sue wanted this to be a relaxed and comfortable occasion, so please feel free to dress accordingly. Please forward condolences through www.mcinnisandholloway.com. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Sue’s memory directly to Wellspring Calgary, 1404 Home Rd. N.W., Calgary, AB T3B 1G7 (www.wellspringcalgary.ca) or to a charity of your choice. Sue’s family would like to express their deepest gratitude to the extraordinary medical team that supported Sue throughout so much of her cancer journey – Dr. Alexander Patterson, Debbie Reinheimer, Dr. Leslie Coulter, Dean England, Chris Ralph, Dr. Neil Hagen, Dr. Jackson Wu, and the Palliative Home Care team.

In living memory of Sue Wonneck, a tree will be planted at Fish Creek Provincial Park by McINNIS & HOLLOWAY FUNERAL HOMES, Fish Creek Chapel, 14441 BANNISTER ROAD S.E. Telephone: (403) 256-9575.

Offer Condolence for the family of WONNECK, Susan Elizabeth (nee Raleigh)

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Condolence Messages

  1. Kristin Yakiwchuk :

    Dear Mark,Luke and Aidan,
    Sue touched our lives in so many ways. She was truly a woman to be admired for her love of family, friends and all that life brought. She taught me how to appreciate the simple things, how to laugh and cry, and the love of true friendship. She modeled being a mother for me as she guided me through the first years of Ben’s life and shared her love with him while I was at work. Sue will be missed each and every day. We are all so blessed to have been touched by her in our lives. Our family sends all our love to your family at this time of loss. I know that her memories are in everything from the smell of a flower to the wind to the sound of a banjo playing. She will be missed deeply.
    Love and hugs to you and the boys,
    Kristin, Kevin, Ben and Meg

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  2. Gordon Menzies Lisa Rosenberg :

    We are feeling Sue’s passing profoundly and despite the distance will miss her so much. She had a gorgeous singing voice, a beautiful smile, and was such a wonderful woman. We were blessed to have her as a friend.

    Gord remembers the many wonderful visits passing through Calgary from ski trips and enjoying the folk circle nights singling with everyone, stories and laughter arond the supper table.

    We are thinking of all the Wonneck’s and Raleigh’s, especially Mark, Aidan and Luke and send you our deepest condolences.

    Much Love from Gord Menzies and Lisa Rosenberg

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  3. Dean Sandham :

    In the short time since meeting Sue and Mark, I have developed the strongest admiration for them. My condolences to Mark, their family, and friends. Her banjo playing was a “happy place” for the rest of us too.
    Dean

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  4. Erv and Laura :

    Mark, Luke, Aidan,

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you. May you be comforted in the belief that Sue is now at peace and in God’s hands.

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  5. Bob & Therese Cameron :

    Our deepest sympathy to you and your boys, Mark. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

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  6. Ryan Davison :

    I was so sad to hear of your loss, Mark. Please know my thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family.
    Ryan Davison

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  7. Ken and Sue :

    Mark, Luke and Aidan

    We are so sorry for your loss. Sue’s memory will live on in the lives of all those that she touched. She brought joy to those who knew her and taught us that the joys in the life are right in front of us to enjoy everyday.

    With our love
    Ken and Sue

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  8. Sue’s kindness, talent, honest friendship
    from many years ago will stay in my heart forever.
    My condolence to Mark, Aidan and Luke.

    Frank,
    Winnipeg

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  9. Linda and Lloyd Thomas :

    Our condolences to you Mark, Luke and Aidan. We will always treasure the times spent together especially the music and the laughter.

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  10. Blaine Hrabi :

    I will alwayas have great memories of sharing music with Sue. Too few but all wonderful. Sue was always welcoming and generous with her genuine joy of singing and playing and I am thankful that I had the opportunity to share in that.

    To Mark, Luke and Aidan, my thoughts are with you. I hope you can find peace in your time of sadness and loss.

    Blaine

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  11. Kevin & Maggie Green :

    Well Sue, when we met, all three of us had cancer and now I am very strongly reminded of The Parting Glass:
    “But since it falls unto my lot,
    That I should rise and you should not,
    I gently rise and softly call,
    Good night and joy be with you all”

    Maggie and I will miss your grace.

    Mark, you know how Maggie and I feel. Hold the boys close and carry on.

    Kevin and Maggie.

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  12. Anne Wolkenstein :

    Dear Mark, Luke, and Aidan:
    How fitting that Sue’s last full day on earth was on Mother’s Day- a day for her to cherish and love and be with her family in the radiant warm sunshine of your love and of nature. Sue’s strength,support, compassion, generosity, laughter, creativity and courage will always be remembered. Her wishes for her family always centred around your future happiness and peace.
    I will miss my dearest friend of 34 years and I will look for Sue in the beauty all around. Blessings, Anne

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  13. Dawn Popescul :

    Dear Mark and Family,
    Mark, I was very saddened to hear about the loss of your wife. Reading about her courage and spririt is very inspiring, and I hope the memories of her give your family strength and energy.
    Thinking of you.
    Dawn Popescul

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  14. Dan MacDonald :

    Mark,

    I never had the pleasure of meeting Sue but I’ve developed a great admiration of her and of you and your boys from how you have lived these past few years. My deepest sympathies go out to your family for your loss.

    Dan

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  15. Rolfe & Shelby Antonowitsch :

    Dear Mark
    Our deepest condolences to you and your boys. Our thoughts and prayers are with you as you face this time of grief.
    God’s Blessings to you,
    Rolfe and Shelby

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  16. caroline bank :

    Dear Mark, Luke and Aidan,
    Our deepest condolences to you and all your family and friends of Sue.
    Sue was such an amazing women. Sue was LOVE,and Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres. Sue’s love was overflowing in the love of her beautiful family, Mark, Luke and Aidan. She was so present to all her surroundings. Her love was so precious, fragile, strong, beautiful in all she did in life. Sue’s love of music and her most beautiful gifted voice will be with all who new Sue. Sue was the most precious friend. I will cherish her in my heart for ever. Sue’s love of nature will always be a reminder of how love is all around us. love and a big hug to you.
    Caroline and Gary

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  17. Cathie Pickerl :

    Dear Mark, Luke and Aidan,
    Deep down, we all know that death is a part of the life cycle. Sue left this world early,way too early for us all, yet has set for the rest of us beautiful examples of courage,empathy, kindness,nurturing, and positivity while facing adversity.
    Mark, Luke and Aidan, we share with you the thirst to find goodness in every day that Sue taught us and would want us all to embrace. Thinking of you, and the natural gifts you will carry on that would make her so proud.
    Love to you all,
    Cathie and Dennis

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  18. Michael Barr :

    Mark,
    Peace be with you.

    Michael Barr

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  19. Edward & Ruth Owsiak :

    We remember Sue back to about 1984 as one of the founders of FPAC. We have had many fond memories of Sue over the years with outdoor activities and her music. To Mark, Luke, and Aidan we send our deepest condolences.

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  20. Murray Fitch :

    In the too-short time that I knew Sue, I was tremendously impressed by her smile, warmth, courage, voice and banjo playing. That Mark and Sue were a remarkable couple was plain to see to anyone that saw them make music. I wish Mark and his family strength in these very difficult times.

    Murray

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  21. Hugh & Tanna Bailey :

    Mark,

    Our deepest sympathy to you and your family for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

    Hugh and Tanna

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  22. Rona Altrows and Bill Paterson :

    Sue’s presence was as beautiful as her voice. Even without knowing her well, we are feel so sad at the loss of this brave and shining woman. Our deepest sympathy to her family.

    Sincerely,
    Rona Altrows and Bill Paterson

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  23. Mark and family
    I was saddened to hear of Sue’s passing. It is a terrible loss for you and the boys. She fought a hard battle and got some time before that horrid disease brought the end. Remember the good times, as there were many, and relish the time you had. Life is often too short. My thoughts are with you, Mark, and I offer you my sincere condolences.
    Dan

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  24. Richard Powley and Sharon Sinclair :

    Mark and family,…
    Our deepest sympathies. The spirit, love and courage that all of you displayed during Sue’s illness is an example that we will always reflect on whenever we face our own challenges in life. You have our admiration and respect, as well as our condolences.

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  25. Lindsay Zink :

    Mark,
    My sympathy to you and your family. I’m sorry I wasn’t able to make it last Saturday but I hear the day was a lovely tribute to Sue.

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  26. Blair Mahaffy :

    Mark,

    I know this is quite late. I hadn’t heard and only just now ran across it on line. I will always remember fondly the gift of music that Sue shared with all of us. My heartfelt condolences to you and your family.

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  27. Sue left a lasting and enduring mark on this world. Sue and Mark’s friendship and graciousness in opening their home to us years ago has been a one of the good things in this life that I will forever remember. I often think fondly of Mark and Sue and was shocked and saddened to hear recently of the loss we all suffered – My thoughts and prayers go particularly to Mark, Luke and Aidan.

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