July 2, 1948 – September 1, 2022
In loving memory ~
Marek Kowalczyk, beloved father, grandfather and friend, passed away in a sailing accident on September 1, 2022 at the age of 74 years. He is survived by his adult children (Phillip Kowalczyk and Margaret Mansell) and their families, and his brother (Wesley Kowalczyk) and family in the United States.
Marek had a diverse, rich life. He chronicled his life’s journey as his “6 Lives”, for each distinct phase of his life. He was born in Poland and educated at AGH University of Science and Technology. For over a decade he was an integral member of the renowned Polish alpine community of that day through his local club in Krakow. He excelled as both a technical climberand big expedition mountaineer in the Tatra Mountains, Alps, Dolomites, Hindu Kush, Karakoram and the Himalayas.
Marek and family then immigrated to Canada in 1984. He held a long professional career in Manitoba as a control systems engineer followed by a return to his roots in Alberta as a climbing specialist with Mountain Equipment Co-op.
At last, in Cowichan Bay Marina, Marek achieved his retirement dream of living on a sailboat: first on “Squid”, and later “Juggernaut I”. Despite limited prior experience, he became an avid sailor, sharpening his skills at every opportunity and sailing throughout the Salish Sea and inner coastal waters of Vancouver Island. He was happy; he was home.
Marek was sometimes indecisive, yet unstoppable when something ignited his passion. He inspired many with how he chased his goals in life. He was a curious man, interested in everything, particular, an avid talker and at times a selective listener. He was genuine and warmand went out of his way to help people. Above all, he loved his children and family fiercely.
Marek will forever be loved, cherished and remembered by his family and friends, scattered across Canada and the globe.
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