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December 9, 1913 - December 28, 2012
Zakon, Batia (1913-2012)
It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Batia Zakon (née Batievska) on December 28, 2012. She died just a few weeks after her 99th birthday, which was a wonderful celebration surrounded by her loving family.
Daughter of the late Hersh and Miriam Batievski, Batia was predeceased by her devoted husband of 54 years, Elias Zakon. Together they were swept along in the turbulence of the great events of twentieth-century Europe. Fleeing the approach of the German army in 1941, they took their family to Barnaul, Siberia, where, with the rest of the populace, they endured five years of hardships. The years from 1946 to 1949 were spent in a refugee camp in Salzburg, Austria, and then from 1949 to 1956 in the newly created State of Israel. In Canada since 1956, they taught for many years at the University of Windsor, until their retirement.
In 1988 they moved to Montreal, where Batia, always keen to learn and to teach, was, until age 96, an active participant and frequent moderator at the MILR (McGill Institute for Learning in Retirement). She has always talked fondly of her friends there: “Eventually I came to Montreal and found MILR. It is a pearl, a real pearl. I divide the world into two camps—cold people and warm people. I found warm people here. It saved my sanity and it broadened my horizons.”
Batia is survived by her two daughters: Tamara (John Labute, Sudarshan Punhani) of Montreal, and Greta (Craig McCaughrin) of Lexington, Virginia; by her seven grandchildren: Paul Labute (Paula Moser), Gregory Labute (Anne Imrie, Fiona Petersen), Daniel Labute (Michelle Elizov), Natalie McCaughrin, Eric McCaughrin (Cecilie Rose), Rebecca McCaughrin (Paul Legendre), Lauren McCaughrin, and six great grandchildren: Steven Labute, Simon Labute, Talia Labute, Alice Petersen-Labute, Jacob McCaughrin, Dahlia Legendre and Rapha Legendre.
Arrangements have been entrusted to the Mount Royal Funeral Complex. As per Batia’s request, there will be no visitation or funeral service held. On-line condolences are available at: www.mountroyalcem.com