The Story of Jean
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Jean Hyska, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.
Jean’s journey began on August 28, 1942. She was born the 2nd of four children and only daughter to Benjamin and Evelyn Robinson. Jean grew up on the family farm in the small community of Crozier, in the Township of Alberton, near Fort Frances, Ontario where she began learning the strong values of hard work, family ties and community. Jean was proud of the Robinson name and Irish heritage and had hoped one day to rent a cottage in Ireland to enjoy the beautiful land and all it had to offer. Jean’s brothers Dennis, Terry, and George have continued to remain rooted to the Robinson land.
After completing high school and business office training, Jean knew her journey needed to continue, and she made the move to the big city of Winnipeg. She kept strong ties to Crozier/Fort Frances never wavering in her bonds to family. Jean was employed at the telegraph office on Main Street (where the CN building now stands) and always maintained that the corner of Portage and Main in Winnipeg was the coldest place on earth! Jean’s sense of career and adventure lead to her a significant decision to venture north to transfer to the telegraph office in the small northern community of Churchill, MB. That single decision lead to the meeting and marriage to her life-long partner Bud. It also led her to learning and mastering the fine art of making Vinetarta from her “house-mother” Mrs. MacQuarrie!
In 1962, Jean’s life with Bud began and Jean became part of the Hyska family with Bud’s brothers Peter, Ivan, and Wally. It was there, in Churchill that Jean found a strong sense of hard work, family ties and community. She also recalled the day she was working at the telegraph office and was the first to receive the news over the wire of the assassination of US President John F Kennedy.
Throughout her life in Churchill, many life-long friendships developed that have remained to this day. Jean’s strong business sense prevailed, and Jean opened a dress shop as well as worked in a local Beauty Salon. Jean & Bud also started a family business called Hyska’s Insurance Agency. Not long after, Bud accepted a position with Investors’ Syndicate as a northern Manitoba Rep. and Jean was by his side. Through great trials and personal hardships, Jean and Bud remained positive, never dwelling on the past. Together, Bud & Jean loved, supported, and encouraged each other. It was in Churchill that there first child Lisa entered the picture in 1967. Bud’s new career in financial planning lead him to many days and weeks of travelling throughout northern Manitoba. With a move to Thompson with a toddler, Jean’s sense of independence and perseverance remained. This brief time in Thompson brought their 2nd child Blayne into the family in 1969. Finally, a decision to move to Flin Flon was made, and in 1972 their 3rd child Melanie was born. Jean & Bud decided to remain in Flin Flon; a decision which has lasted for over 40 years.
As their life in Flin Flon began, Jean’s values of independence, family, and community created long-lasting friendships with many people. Having a husband travelling for days or weeks at a time, Jean cared for their 3 young children and held down the fort. She began carving out a life for herself that would forge many lasting personal and family friendships through their children, as office assistant with Investor’s Group, later as a secretary in the Flin Flon office at Steelgas (now Stittco), as a member of CCC - “Triple C” (Calorie Counters’ Club), as a member of the Quilter’s Club and member of the Anglican Church (St. Peter’s and then later, St. Peter & St. James Anglican Church). Jean was also quick to lend a hand to support her dear and closest friends involved in other community groups such as the Rotary Club and Inner Wheel.
When the opportunity presented itself to build a cabin at Bakers Narrows in the later part of the 1970’s, Jean’s journey continued. Bud, Jean & the kids worked together as a family to clear and build a summer cabin. As they worked together, both Jean and Bud had a hand in fostering those strong values of hard work, family ties and community in their children and the Hyska family became part of the lake community, enjoying all that the seasons offered in the pristine northern Manitoba wilderness. Fulfilling their life-long dream together, Bud & Jean transformed their summer cabin into a beautiful year-round home in 1998. It was in this home, that their journey together led to years of gatherings, and visits with family, neighbours, and friends. Jean & Bud always had an open-door policy; “come on in, nice to meet you, pull up a chair”.
Jean’s interests in sewing, cooking, baking, gardening, and picking blueberries have evolved and lasted throughout her life. She deeply enjoyed sharing her time and talents with family, friends, and community. With her love of travel, Jean was fortunate to make numerous trips throughout her life to many parts of Manitoba, Canada, and the world. Jean & Bud shared many fond memories together with family, friends and colleagues. Jean’s last trip was in March of this year, with her sister-in-law Stella on a beautiful cruise of the Hawaiian Islands. Little did they know the tremendous changes that were already happening in the world from a devastating virus. Protected by their Guardian Angels Bud & Peter, Jean and Stella managed to arrive home safely and without sickness!
Jean’s journey as “Gramma Jean” began with the early arrival of Blayne & Becky’s daughter Rachel and soon after, son Dylan. Not long after that, Lisa & John added 2 girls Abigail and Megan to the family. To complete the circle, Melanie & Simon added 2 boys, Noah and Sam. Together, these 6 beautiful children lead Jean & Bud on their journey as grandparents. Leading by example, Gramma Jean and Grampa Bud fostered in their grandchildren, the strong values of hard work, family ties and community; all the while loving and supporting them. Jean & Bud were both profoundly proud of each one of their beautiful grandchildren. Gramma Jean patiently guided them in learning important life-long skills such as cooking, baking, sewing, cleaning, shoveling gravel, and stacking wood; just to name a few!
Jean’s journey of service was strong and committed. She never backed away from supporting her friends and family in activities and events that required hard work, organization, and planning. Her support for the local Anglican church grew over the years and most recently, Jean helped to create and organize the idea of the “Memory Ice Candles” project and the “Pie-Making” project. These two projects, wrapped in hard-work, family ties and community, brought Jean a sense of purpose and accomplishment and created strong bonds with a group of close friends that loved and supported each other.
As Bud’s health failed, Jean’s journey lead her to a time of caregiver and finally, widow. She supported and loved Bud and gave all of herself; all the while, continuing her commitments to family ties and community.
Jean’s journey of self continued with the hope and dream of living out her last days in the year-round home at the lake at Bakers Narrows. After years of instilling her strong values in her children and grandchildren, and her strong bonds with friends and community, Jean was blessed with the receiving of these values. With love and support, these gifts, so freely given from Jean, were given back to her so that she could remain comfortable and safe. Jean’s family brought her the greatest joy and pride and their love and commitment was reflected back to her in the form of those strong values of hard work, family ties and community.
As her family and friends mourn the loss of Jean, it is a blessing to know that her legacy lives on in all who knew her.
We would like to express our deepest gratitude and love to the Robinson and Hyska families and all of the extended relatives as you supported and cared for Jean, Bud and each other over the years and across the miles. Jean made sure that she kept us all up to date with the news and events in the lives of our families.
To the life-long friends and their families who have lived close to and far from Jean & Bud, we thank you for gathering, celebrating, and sharing your lives with us and for creating lasting memories.
To the Moorhead, Pottek and Highmoor families, we thank you for embracing and loving Jean and Bud, their children, and grandchildren.
To the Beaver Bank Road Neighbours, and the Ladies of the Lake, we thank you for your support, friendship, protection and providing Jean & Bud with a sense of community.
Finally, we thank Jean for instilling in all of us the strong values of hard work, family ties, and community. We love you!
Jean lost her husband Bud on August 6, 2016; her parents Benjamin (Sept 1987) and Evelyn (Jan 1977).
Jean leaves to mourn her 3 children; Lisa and partner John, daughters Abigail & Megan; son Blayne and partner Becky, daughter Rachel & son Dylan; Melanie and partner Simon, and sons Noah and Sam.
Jean leaves her 3 brothers; Dennis and wife Lorna; Terry and wife Karen; George and wife Cathy, their children and extended families.
Jean leaves her sister-in-law Stella Hyska, her children and extended families.
Jean leaves her brother-in-law Wally and wife Elsie, their children and extended families.
To use a quote from a dear couple who have remained friends from the Churchill days…
“May the angels in heaven welcome you with a piece of Vinetarta made with Jean’s recipe”
THE GRAVESIDE SERVICE FOR JEAN HYSKA CAN BE VIEWED ON THE DADSON FUNERAL HOME & CREMATORIUM LTD. FACEBOOK PAGE.