Always Remembered

Lyn Hunt & Minnie Pasiechnyk

This June the KIOTAC kitchen lost two very special women.

On June 5th Lyn Hunt passed away followed by good friend and team-mate Minnie Pasiechnyk on June 12th.

These ladies have been a very important part of the KIOTAC kitchen crew for many years and their hard work and dedication was witnessed by thousands. Their smiles, laughter and artistry will be missed by all who had the fortune to meet them.

Our hearts are heavy but we are grateful for the friendship we shared. We will cherish their memory and do as they would have wanted – we will go on. Our thoughts and prays are with their families.

Bruno Marti

A familiar face is gone from Kimberley’s Platzl with the sudden passing of everyone’s favourite baker, Bruno Marti.

Marti died in Calgary on February 22, 2011, at the age of 59, his passing a shock, and sad news to all who knew him.

A celebration of life service was held at Bootleg Gap Clubhouse this past Sunday, and the space was filled to capacity with friends and loved ones.

Bruno came to Kimberley in August of 1977, to pursue a dream.

“It was always his dream to have a bakery and tea room in a ski town,” wife Veronica said.

He owned Kimberley City Bakery, first with a partner and then on his own from 1977.

Bruno was an avid hiker and skier and enjoyed all the outdoor opportunities Kimberley had to offer.

“Our plan was to stay here after Bruno retired,” Veronica said. “There was no reason to ever leave. He loved it here.”

Bruno and Veronica have two grown children; daughter Michelle of Ottawa and son Mario of Halifax.

Bruno was born in Interlaken, Switzerland, where he did his schooling and became a Journeyman Baker. He emigrated to Canada in 1974, three years prior to moving to Kimberley.

As for Kimberley City Bakery, things will continue on.

“He had been wanting to retire, so the bakery was for sale,” Veronica said. “But we’ll just carry on as usual. Luckily we have a very good staff.”

Bob McWhinnie

To some, a friend, a colleague, a mentor, a teacher, a champion of a cause. For KIOTAC, he was all that. Although Bob didn’t serve on the KIOTAC executive, he was an honorary director. He was always there with encouragement and suggestions. As MC in the Platzl during the Accordion Championships, Bob became the voice of KIOTAC. His warm personality and organizational skills enabled him to keep everything flowing and allowing everyone to have a turn. It didn’t matter if you were a novice accordion player or you were a world champion, Bob treated you the same, with a warm smile and a genuine thank you. While getting one performer off stage, another one on, making announcements and keeping everyone entertained with his banter, Bob was able to sign up accordionists to perform at our Thursday Night Jam, again, making sure everyone who wished to play had the opportunity.

Over the years, Bob developed friendships with people across Canada and the United States, as well as people from Australia, Austria, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Scotland, and Russia.

Bob, before we say our final good-bye, KIOTAC has one last job for you to do. Remember the cartoon of St. Peter standing at the pearly gates greeting musicians? He was allowing everyone entry into heaven except the accordionists who were designated to the fires of hell, which of course, is where many of our local citizens would also like to send them. Your job Bob is to change St. Peter’s his mind. So grab your accordion, find Myron Floren, Frankie Yankovic, and some of our competitors, form an accordion band and rock the house.

Bob, you will be missed by the executive, the volunteers, the accordionists, the tourists and the community at large, but you will not be forgotten. You left your mark.

Thanks for the memories.

Take care, we will meet again.

Sharon Hann April 5, 2009

It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of Sharon Hann of Calgary, Alberta. Sharon attended KIOTAC the last seven years in a row and was a member of the Fess ‘n’ Friends accordion orchestra which is based out of Okotoks. Sharon played with her orchestra each year on the platzl and participated in the Massed Band for the Saturday night grand finale. She was like a 2nd mother to Michael Bridge who affectionately called her “Two”.

Sharon eagerly anticipated KIOTAC each year and never missed any of the competitions for the children. She enjoyed watching them grow up and develop as musicians. She “held her breath” while each child performed, hoping that things would go well during their performances. Although no longer with us, she will always be at KIOTAC in spirit. Rest in peace Sharon.

Ethel Tattersal – April 3, 2006

Passed away after a short illness, on April 3, 2006.She spent many years volunteering for KIOTAC, and was just in the process of moving back to Ontario.

Gloria Robison – November 17, 2005

A sincere volunteer for many years to KIOTAC,Gloria Robison, collecting tickets at the lower (Zamboni) door passed away during heart surgery November 17, 2005

Jim Sims August 13, 2005

Partner and Best Friend for 20 years to Jeany Irvin, in August 13, 2005, Jimmy lost his battle with renal disease and diabetes.After a four year battle and loss of both legs, he is at rest. Jimmy fought longand hard and loved life and was one of the first donators to KIOTAC in its very early years.Jeany would like to thank everyone for their prayers, cards, calls and
flowers. Your thoughtfulness means a lot. We will all miss Jimmy but are grateful that he is at peace.

Robert “Bob” Hall – April 22, 2002

Bob and his wife, Beatrice have been long time volunteers KIOTAC. They would come for set-up and stay until everything was put away for the year. Bob loved the accordion and was also an avid motorcycle man! He loved his family and introduced three of his granddaughters to the accordion and they have his love for this instrument and are now competitors in our event. Our warm wishes to Bea and the family, we look forward to seeing Bea and the girls in Kimberley.

Phil Case – January 8, 2002

Phil was a member of the Five Valley Accordion Association and played in and around Missoula with Mike Belitz, Mike Hanson, The Town & Gown Jazz Band and the Jodi Marshall Trio. He has played with Lionel Hampton and Sammy Davis Jr. and many of America’s top musicians. Our prayers and thoughts go out to Joy and Family.

Robert Borg – December 15, 2001

Robert and his wife Carroll are former Dance Adjudicators for KIOTAC. Robert passed away as the result of a heart attack he sustained on December 9th. He had all the appropriate treatment and was on his way to a complete recovery, but that wasn’t to be. It seems so impossible that this happened as he was so apparently fit and healthy. Our hearts go out to Carroll and Family.


In Shirley’s Memory, the McFadyen family is adding a $400.00 scholarship to our KIOTAC Event. This money will be awarded to a competitor or competitors (18 Years and Under) who may need some monetary assistance to attend the championships.

Teachers, if you have a needy student or students, please notify KIOTAC at (250) 427-4547 or toll free at 1-888-454-6822 or email Recipient(s) to be decided by the Committee.