It is with a heavy heart the family of John (Johhny Bondo) Szarko announces that John has said
K’Bye for the last time on May 5, 2019, passing away after a brief battle with cancer.
His generosity, vibrancy and kindness with be missed by his best friend and beloved wife
Dagmara, sisters Monci (Pierre Patry), Annie Szarko, brother Frank and mother-in-law Mrs. P,
sisters-in-law Inese (Freddy), Laila and brother-in-law Alvis (Samantha) and Mike Lepage. He will also be missed by the
best of friends Valerie Wilson, Andy and Mel, Steve, Dianne and Karen. There are many more, too many to mention. John was loved and respected by the many people who knew him.
John will also be missed by many nieces and nephews, as well as the band members of Cinderella Rockafella who considered him a wonderful boss and mentor.
A heartfelt hug and a ‘How you doin?’ has been welcomed by predeceased family, Margaret and Steve Szarko (parents), Helen Lepage (sister), Steve and Patti Szarko (brother and sister-in-law) and Mr. P (father-in law).
John had the ingenuity and courage to be the designer of his own destiny and follow his dreams. As a youth he taught himself to pitch left handed as ‘lefties’ were considered more valuable. With practice he was able to pitch a respectable 93 MPH. He was considered an exceptional athlete. In later years he started his own band, toured Canada and relocated to Vancouver where he and Dag established a successful music career, backing the likes of April Wine, Headpins, Trooper, Prism, Colin James, to name a few. In the 90’s his music career took him overseas for work. When asked where, he would open his mental rolodex and without hesitation would recount, ‘Alaska, Palm Springs, Guam, Hawaii, China, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Indonesia, Bahrain, South Korea, UAE and Oman”. A most notable assignment, John and his band were asked by the US Navy to perform for the troops on the USS Kittyhawk (decommissioned) and the USS Abe Lincoln in a secret location in the Persian Gulf, having been “caught” and “catapulted” off of both flight decks, not of which many navy personnel had ever experienced.
After 22 years of living and working overseas John decided to hang up his drum sticks and returned to Canada in in 2014 with Dag. Semi-retirement did not slow him down. He was a great problem solver and with his sister Annie there was never a project too big..a challenge was always welcome.
A vegetarian of 35 years he enthusiastically embraced gardening, growing his own veggies, boating (he was the only one that could captain the pontoon), started a small backhoe business, and spent time working his property alongside his rescued kitties Muscat and Tiwi...he relished in the simplicity of his new found life.
The family would like to thank the staff at M4N HSN who provided him comfort in his final days.
A celebration of his colourful life will be held on June 22, time and location to be announced. Come with your best Johnny story!
In lieu of flowers donations to Pet Save, The Blue Door Kitchen or the Elgin Street Mission would be appreciated. (Arrangements entrusted to Sudbury Park Lawn Cremation Services)
“A thousand words won’t bring you back
I know because I’ve tried
Neither will a thousand tears
I know because I’ve cried”
K’bye Sweet Angel, K’bye