In Memory of




Obituary for John Emil Koski

Koski, John Emil

September 18, 1945 to November 16, 2023

It is with profound sadness that the family of John Koski announce his passing, from natural causes, on November 16, 2023 at the age of 78 years. He passed in the home that he built; on the property where he was born, in Lively, Ontario.

He will be lovingly remembered by his wife of 56 years, Pauline (Johnson); children Karen and Lisa (Ian McIvor), and beloved grandson John McIvor. Predeceased by his parents Emil and Johanna Koski, and siblings Oiva Koski (Helen), and Maire Kaski (of Finland). Sadly missed by his nephews and nieces: Dave Kaski, Tom (Cindy) Koski, Kerry (Christine) Koski, Lila Randall (Rob Pinkerton), Michael Koski, Helga Burton (Phil), as well as brothers/sisters-in-law: Danny (Janice) Johnson, Jim (Brenda) Johnson, Susan (Neil) McLean and Paul (Julie) Johnson, as well as many extended family members and friends.

John began working underground at INCO’s Creighton Mine as a teen, and retired in 1994 after 30 years, various roles within the company, and surviving a rock burst. He joked that he graduated from the “University of Creighton Mine”. After retiring, he spent a year working for Laurentian University preparing the underground space for the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory. The various characters, challenges, and camaraderie of the mine were influential, and he enjoyed reminiscing about his years there. While his formal education was short, he was a voracious reader and gave himself an education that spanned diverse topics.

John was an outdoorsman with many skills. He built a “bush buggy” before ATVs were popular; a wood splitter, a sauna with a wood-burning stove that he welded, and restored an old Ford tractor which he used to prepare garden beds at home.

Anyone who knew John would tell you that he loved nothing more than chatting with his friends. In recent years, reduced mobility kept him homebound, but the long and friendly conversations continued over the phone.

John’s parents were Finnish immigrants, and his first language was Finnish. He bore many of the classical Finnish characteristics – stoicism, love of the land, hard work, sisu, and a soft spot for animals. The family rescued and spoiled many cats over the years. He enjoyed watching the activity of the wild birds in the yard, and was always proud to show off his property (the two-dollar tour) to new friends.

As per John’s wishes, no funeral service will take place. Donations to the Turtle Pond Wildlife Centre would be appreciated. Arrangements entrusted to the Jackson & Barnard Funeral Home. For donations or messages of condolence