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Sudbury architect dies

Oryst Sawchuk designed institutional buildings, landmarks
Oryst Sawchuk

Sudbury architect, artist and community leader Oryst Sawchuk died May 2 at Health Sciences North in Sudbury from complications following heart surgery in Toronto. He was 91.

The Winnipeg-born Sawchuk lived in Sudbury most of his life, working as a senior partner of Sawchuk Peach Associates Architects Planners.

His architectural contributions to the city include the Sudbury Transit Centre, the main fire hall in downtown Sudbury, Lo-Ellen Park Secondary School, and the N’Swakamok Native Friendship Centre.

He was most proud of his work as the designer of the original Grace Hartman Amphitheatre when Bell Park was extended in the mid-1960s.

In 2001, he was chosen to design the national memorial to Canadians who fought for the republic in the Spanish Civil War. The monument is located on Green Island opposite Rideau Falls on the Rideau River in Ottawa.

Sawchuk was active with the Sudbury Chamber of Commerce in the 1980s, serving as its president in the late 1980s.

He received a Community Builders Award in 2010 for his contribution to the arts. Thorneloe University also honoured him for his community contributions in 2018.

He is survived by his partner of 25 years, Vicki Gilhula, his son Sergei and his wife, Julie, his son’s mother, Natasha, and grandchildren Ivan and Viktor.