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Saturday, 05 December 2020 04:29


Stanislaw Brodzki

A respected leader in the Polish Canadian community Stanisław passed away on July 4, 2013. His beloved wife and best friend Maria, treasured son Marek and daughter-in-law Barbara, and adored brother George, departed before him.
Stanisław was a devoted grandfather to Alexander. He will be lovingly remembered by Alexander, daughter-in-law Diane, sisters-in-law Krystyna and Loda, nieces Barbara, Hania, Margaret, Wanda, Elizabeth and Monika, nephews Andrew and Christopher, and their families. He leaves behind a wide circle of friends and associates from across North America and Europe.

p.BrodzkiStanisław was the second son born to Apolonia and Leon Brodzki of Płock, Poland. At the outbreak of the Second World War, he joined the Polish Armed Forces at the Military School in Lida, and so began his world experiences: internment in Lithuania, transported to prisoner-of-war camps in the USSR, graduated Military College in Jalalabad, and evacuated to Iraq and Iran. Requisitioned by the Polish Forces in England, Stanisław travelled to India, Pakistan, boarded PO Dilwara and sailed through to Mombasa, Kenya, and on to the port cities of Durban and Cape Town, South Africa before sailing to Liverpool aboard the SS Britannic. In 1943, he resigned from the Army and joined the Polish Navy. When assigned to the "ORP Burza" Stanisław saw action in the Azores, along the African coast to the Belgian Congo, in the North Atlantic and Gibraltar. In 1946, when promoted to the rank of Sub-Lieutenant of the Navy, he began a courtship with Maria Gwiazdoń. They married in April 1947, welcomed a son, Marek, in 1948 and immigrated to Canada aboard the SS Atlantic in 1952. The family settled in Toronto where Stanisław began a 32-year career with de Havilland Aircraft of Canada until retirement in 1985.

Stanisław believed in giving back to the community. He spent almost 50 years with the Polish Scouting Association of Canada, and over 30 years with the Canadian Polish Congress. In addition to serving as Chair for two terms, he oversaw some key initiatives: the Congress' 25th anniversary celebrations; construction of the Katyń monument in Toronto, organization of a Katyń exhibition and advisor for the Katyń video; fundraising for the John Paul II House in Rome and the establishment of a Chair of Polish History at the University of Toronto.
The Canadian Polish Congress and the Polish Scouting Association of Canada nominated Stanisław for a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and presented the medal to him at a private gathering in February 2013.
Stanisław became involved in "Polonia of the World" in the 1970s: first as co-organizer of the Washington conference, then as organizing Chair of the Toronto conference in 1978. His involvement continued in subsequent conferences in Rome, Paris, London, Chicago and Warsaw. His long-time work of fostering ties between Poland and Poles Living Abroad after 1989 was recognized at the 4th International Gathering of Poles in 2012, Warsaw.
Stanisław was a member of the Polish Naval Association of Toronto and participated in all of the World Rallies of Sailors in Poland. He initiated the twinning of two ship-museums that fought together in the Second World War: the HMSC Haida and the "ORP Błyskawica". The official signing of the Sister Ship Agreement took place in Gdynia, Poland in June 2006 and in Hamilton, Ontario in September 2007. The project continues to this day. In 2012 at Gdynia, Poland, the Commanding Officer of the Polish Navy bestowed to Lieutenant-Commander Brodzki a medal for his contribution and dedication to the Polish Navy.
People, projects and the cottage in Kaszuby, emails and telephone calls from around the world, stories, traditions and meals at his table with family and friends are what Stanisław loved the most.

Special thanks to those who made it possible for Stanisław to remain in the comfort of his home with the supports he needed: Sylvia of the Toronto West CCAC; Crystal, Dave and Olive of the Red Cross; Dr. Davidson, the blood clinic staff and blood donors, St. Joseph's Hospital; Jurek, Teresa, Hania, Witek, Danusia, Natalia, Alexander, Basia and Diane.

Friends may call at the Turner & Porter Yorke Chapel, 2357 Bloor Street West, at Windermere, east of the Jane Subway, on Sunday from 2-4 & 6-9pm. Funeral mass Monday 10am from St. Teresa's Church, 123 11th Street, Toronto. Interment Park Lawn cemetery
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Stanisław's name to the Barbara and Marek Brodzki Literacy Award of The Angel Foundation for Learning, Toronto Catholic District School Board, 80 Sheppard Avenue East, Toronto ON M2N 6E8.

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