Ylik Michael Wasylik, 90, passed away peacefully Thursday, June 8, 2017, at Mountainview Village in Kelowna, B.C. Mike (Yuke) was born February 13, 1927, to Frank and Josephine Wasylik in Slobodce Janowskiej, Poland, the second of three children. The family immigrated to Canada in 1930, settling first in Arrowhead, B.C., then to Revelstoke where all three children made lifelong friends and completed their education.
Mike’s long career at Canadian Pacific Railroad began in his late teens in 1943, as a telegram delivery boy during the Second World War. At the same time he began a lifelong love of steam trains and telegraphy. He became a railroad operator in 1946 in the era of the telegraph, then “YMW” became a dispatcher in 1951, working his entire career in the southern British Columbia divisions. He was deeply respected by those he worked with for his sense of commitment to both schedules and the crews who depended on his ability to adapt to challenging weather or geographic conditions. His role was computer-assisted at the time of his retirement in 1985, after 41 years of service, as the most senior train dispatcher in Canada.
In 1952, he married Dorothy Agnes Chisholm, a Revelstoke native, in Vancouver where Dorothy was teaching. Shortly afterward they returned to Revelstoke where they built a family home and lived for 25 years. In 1977, Mike and Dorothy moved to Nelson, BC, where Mike worked until he retired.
He and Dorothy traveled North America and to Europe in their early retirement years, and Mike also enjoyed travels with his children to Northern B.C. and the Yukon, and to his Polish birthplace and on safari in Africa. A keen hockey and baseball player in his youth, he coached both as a parent and continued to golf and curl for many years after retirement. His favorite place in the world was the summer home he and Dorothy built on Mabel Lake, B.C., where he enjoyed fishing and time with their grandchildren.
Mike is survived by his wife Dorothy, daughters Joan Wasylik and Julianne (Rick) Pells and son Steven (Fran Bethell) Wasylik, and two grandchildren Eric and Caitlin Pells. Both his parents, his older sister Stella (Bill) White and younger sister Mary (Don) Kirkland predeceased him. He is also survived by cousins, nieces and nephews throughout British Columbia, including his sisters’ families and members of the Despot, Butler and Peressini families.
A celebration of Mike’s life will be held at a future date. In lieu of flowers, the family gratefully suggests charitable donations in Mike’s memory may be made to the Good Samaritan Society – Mountainview Village in recognition of the compassionate care Mike received and that Dorothy continues to receive there, https://gss.org, or to the charity of your choice. Messages and favorite memories of Mike may be posted online at www.firstmemorialfuneralkelowna.com