ANTONATION, Wilfred (Wilf)
Wilfred was born Wilf Antonyshyn in Grandview, Manitoba on March 15th 1934 to parents John and Martha Antonyshyn. The oldest of three boys along with brothers Mike and Lawrence, Wilf grew up on a farm in Shoal Lake, Manitoba. Wilf moved to Toronto in 1961 and changed his last name to ANTONATION. After toiling at a number of jobs Wilf landed at what is now known as Intercity Papers where he had a stellar career in the company’s warehouse.
Wilf was an avid and gifted baseball player. There is no doubt that had the Toronto Blue Jays existed in the early 60’s that Wilf would have been a first round draft pick. Wilf played ball until the age of 80, often outplaying those 40 years younger than him. Regularly called up as a designated hitter or runner, opposing teams purposely “walked” him to avoid the inevitable grand slam home run he was well known for. His teammates knew to park their cars well back in the parking lot to prevent being hit by Wilf’s out of the park at bats.
Married to Karin in 1963, Wilf had three daughters, Carol Ann, Valarie and Christine. Karin died in 1991 and a year later Wilf married Barb and embraced her three daughters, Chris, Cathy and Sandy as his own. The six girls loved Wilf, he doted on his many grandchildren.
Wilf lived in Oakville, Mississauga and Burlington most of his life and in later years in Guelph and most recently at Granite Landing in Cambridge. Wilf likened his life at Granite as akin to living on a cruise ship.
Although Wilf and Barb lived their winters in St Petersburg Florida he was not one who enjoyed travel, however when he did travel he did so in style. Wilf owned a succession of Cadillac and Lincoln’s. All had to be burgundy with burgundy leather interiors. He tired of them quickly so was often trading in a burgundy Lincoln for the latest Burgundy Cadillac.
A deeply religious man, Wilf strongly believed in helping his community. He was a member of the Lions Club of Burlington and enjoyed his many years as a volunteer at Credit Valley Hospital. He was a sought-after volunteer at the hospital because of his quick wit, strength and kind demeanour to those recovering from serious illnesses.
Wilf was a genuine and devoted family man, he contacted his girl’s daily and had his own special relationship with each one of them. He would ask when they would visit as he was making a massive pot of Beet Borscht or enough Perogies to feed an army. No cook anywhere could make Borscht or Perogies like Wilf’s. His recipe for Borscht a closely guarded secret that he shared with anyone who would listen.
His entire family and his many cousins who he remained close to all his life will miss Wilf dearly. His former teammates and his many friends will miss him. The baseball diamonds in heaven are about to experience the skills of a superstar. God speed.
Friends will be received at Gilbert MacIntyre and Son Funeral Home, Hart Chapel, 1099 Gordon St, Guelph, on Sunday, January 12, 2020 from 5-6pm followed by a memorial service in the funeral home chapel at 6pm. Reception to follow. A private family burial will be taking place at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the charity of one's choice. Donation cards are available at the funeral home (519-821-5077), or online at www.gilbertmacintyreandson.com.