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With great sadness, her family announces the passing of Mary Zvonkovich (nee Smukavich) on November 17th, 2020 at the age of 93. Mary was born in Croatia on December 24th, 1926. At the age of 9, she and her mother (Teresa Katarincic) and brother (John) made the long journey to Sudbury and reunited with her father (Ignac Smukavich), who earned their passage by working in the mines. Mary grew up and fell in love with the boy next door, Peter Zvonkovich, whom she married in 1946. In 1960, they welcomed their son, Peter, who was her lifelong pride and joy. Mary worked hard her entire life, from her early days on the family farm, the hotel she and her husband bought in Caledonia and later the Penage hotel, and finally the bedding and towel department at Eaton’s, which she liked best of all. But Mary wasn’t all about work. She loved being outside and tending to her gardens. She transformed the blueberries she enjoyed picking for hours into the most mouth-watering pies. Her apple strudel and walnut povitica were legendary. Not to mention her cooking! Her cabbage rolls and pedaheh were the best. Mary also knew how to have fun. She played the card game 66 like a shark, gave the slots a run for their money and enjoyed the occasional Molson Ex. Mary believed in the importance of community. She was a lifelong member of the Croatian Peasant Society, a devoted parishioner of St. Patrick’s Parish, a 50-year member of the CWL and a dedicated volunteer of the Mended Hearts, which recognized her contributions in an award. She consistently demonstrated what it meant to be a committed individual and loyal friend, from picking up and driving her friends to church, to walking the family dogs, and ensuring that no one’s birthday or anniversary was forgotten. She believed that a good life was achieved through good habits, strong routines, and a determination to just keep going. She never gave up. Mary was humble, generous, and loving. Her lessons for living an authentic life live among her friends and those who were lucky enough to have her as family. She will be so deeply missed by her son Peter (Allyson Streich), her sister Millie (Rudy Podrebarac, predeceased), her sister-in-law Anne Bedek (Ronald), her nieces Theresa, Kathy (Cathy van Ingen) and Anna Podrebarac, Emily (Pat DiPietro) and Mary (Brendan Wall), nephew John Bedek (Maureen Moore), her great-nieces Emma, Olivia and Sofia Buckle, Christina and Lindsay DiPietro, and Rachel, Kelly and Taylor Bedek. Mary was predeceased by her parents, husband, and brother. In light of COVID-19, a private family funeral will be held. Messages of condolence may be left at In lieu of flowers, a donation to one of Mary’s favourite charities, the Heart and Stroke Foundation, would be greatly appreciated.

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Provided by: Jackson & Barnard Funeral Home

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