Michael Rusnak was born October 23, 1925 to Wasyl and Domka (nee Markowski) Rusnak. He was the 8th of 11 children born on the homestead in the Insinger District. He attended Lesanko School which was approximately 4 miles from the homestead, where he attained his grade 12, which was apparently an uphill walk both to and from school. Michael left home at the age of 15 to make his mark in the world. In 1940 he went to Winnipeg and obtained a diploma as a machinist, following which he took a position at the Fort Erie Fleet Aircraft Factory as a lathe operator working on the Lancaster aircraft landing cylinders. At age 15 ½ he joined the Navy and was stationed in Scotland, Ireland, England and Newfoundland during WWII. After leaving the Navy in 1945 Michael’s first job was manager at Picardy Restaurant in Winnipeg. In 1947 he purchased his first quarter of farmland in the Insinger District. In 1948 he married the love of his life Doris Davidson, a bond which lasted 71 years. In 1950 he started part-time as a salesman with Mutual Life of Canada. In 1954, Michael, Doris, Wayne and Joann moved to Yorkton where Michael took up full-time employment with Mutual Life, however he continued to farm until 1986. In his last years of farming he was joined by his brother-in-law Steve Hnatiuk. Michael worked with Mutual Life, Mutual Group, Clarica and finally SunLife until retiring at age 85. Michael was a long-time member of the Rotary Club, as well as being past president, Parkland Shrine, Masons and the General Alexander Branch of the Royal Canadian Legion. In 1969, Michael lost four fingers on his right hand in a farm accident, an event that saw him recover to engage in every activity except for fastball, a sport which he loved. He and Doris have 10 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren that survive him, having lost one great-grandson at 9 ½ months of age. Michael was predeceased by his parents; his brothers Nick (Ruth), Bill (Faye) and John; his sisters, Mary (Bill), Kay (Steve), Anne (Nick), Margaret (Dave), Iris (Bill) and kid sister, Olga; brothers-in-law, Dave (Margaret) and Arnold Davidson; and great-grandson Grayson Rieger. He is survived by his older sister, Sophie Husulak (Steve) and his sister-in-law, Olga Rusnak, along with countless nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews. During his years selling life insurance, Michael was continuously recognized by being a member of the Million Dollar Round Table and for many years was among the top agents for Mutual Life and its successor companies. Michael’s family was the most important thing in his life. His love of meeting people and engaging with them was the basis upon which his business succeeded. Michael never saw his clients as customers but as friends. He believed in the product he sold and its ability to protect surviving family members. For him it was a duty, not a job.
He will truly be missed. The advantage of his living to 94 years of age is that his family has had an opportunity to spend countless hours both working and playing together with him, forming memories that will be cherished forever. He leaves his beloved wife Doris of 71 years; their three children and their families:
Son, Wayne (Diane) Rusnak and their four children, Lee (Jodie), Emma, Ali, Ty - Brett (Claudia) - Lara (Shawn), Dylan, Bryn – Todd (Kim), Holt, Cozie;
Daughter, Joann (Barry) Zapshalla and their three children: Jake (Britainy), William, Katie – Brock – Logan (Shelby);
Son, David (Laurie Anne) Rusnak and their three children, Christopher (Beth) - Janna Lea (Justin) Isla, Maddux - Cassandra (Cameron), Elliahna, Grayson (pre-deceased), Avalynn.