It is with great sadness that the family of Anton “Tony” ZADNIK announces his passing the morning of Saturday, May 7th, 2022 at the University of Alberta Hospital (Edmonton, Alberta, Canada) after a devastating battle with the Coronavirus disease. Compassionately by his side during this last stretch of life was his daughter.
He was born in Pregarje in the former Yugoslavia, now known as the Republic of Slovenia, to Joše and Frana (born Frank). Influenced by political reasons, he fled his country along with an exodus of other Slovenians at the time, emigrating to Italy to find refuge. From there, he migrated to France where he met his future wife, Jocelyne (born Convert). They would marry in 1963. A few short years thereafter, they immigrated to Canada with their first child, William, and later welcomed their daughter, Myriam, to the family. They finally received their Canadian citizenship years later in 1976.
In his youth he was known for being devoted to his family and for gathering friends to sing and dance, celebrating life’s blessings. Later in his adult years, he became an established stonemason in France well known for his exquisite work and professionalism. This craftsmanship continued to be recognized in Canada where he could also relish in the seven languages he had acquired over the years. Numerous meaningful friendships were built and he was an active and cherished member of the French and Slovenian community here in Edmonton, Alberta. During these remarkable eighty-eight years, Anton not only rubbed elbows with several notorious people along the way but continued to be devoted to his family and friends. He was a man of many passions including, proudly celebrating customs from his homeland with other fellow Slovenians, playing a game of pétanque or bocce, tending to his garden, propagating and grafting plants, winemaking, bonding with animals (especially his childhood dog and Bijou during retirement), bringing stone/brick/wood artisanship to fruition, cooking his famous goulash, watching (& saving) birds with Pete, sharing a glass of wine and laughter with friends, and later on in life, doting upon his grandchild whom he cherished greatly.
Anton will be lovingly remembered by his son, William (Corinne Zadnik, born Arabeyre); daughter, Myriam; grandchild, Solange Zadnik, daughter of Myriam; and numerous friends. He also leaves to mourn his extended family in Canada through affinal ties by way of Marija’s marriage: his brother-in-law Roman Grubiša, his nephew Willis, nieces Susan and Sandra, as well as, grandnephew Darcy Grubiša and grandniece Nicole Clayton (Ryan Curry), great-grandniece Rylee Clayton. and great-grandnephew Donovan Clayton. Also left to bereave is his remaining and dearly loved kinship in Slovenia. He is also survived by descendants of expatriate relatives in the United States of America and Australia. Deeply moved by his passing, beloved in-laws and family in France will also cherish his memory. Anton was predeceased by his wife, Jocelyne; parents, Joše and Frana; siblings, Darko (Angela Zadnik, born Kvret), Victor (Lucia Zadnik, born Sepulveda), Marija (Roman Grubiša), and Angela (Anton Lever). He will be remembered for his ingenuity, generosity, and his willingness to always help a friend in need. His incredible strength of body and spirit will also forever be inspiring. We take comfort in the many words of support so many have shared with us and trust that precious memories of him will prevail.
Extended gratitude is expressed to the Mergl family who were not only friends and neighbours but who gave of themselves wholeheartedly through times of celebration, suffering and all that lies in between. You played a significant role in his life. The family would also like to thank the incredible staff at the University of Alberta Hospital who have made so many sacrifices of their own to look after our loved ones who have succumbed to the Coronavirus, including Anton. His trust in your care was evident from the beginning and helped ease his pain. He feared not as he told his daughter so stoically.
A Celebration of Anton’s life and private family service will take place later in France, where his cremated remains will be laid to rest at his wife’s side in her native municipality of Joux-la-Ville, as per his wishes.
Memorial donations in Anton’s name may be made to the University Hospital Foundation.