Tomas Liebich passed away on Sunday, June 4 with his wife and daughters by
Born in Croatia, his family moved first to Argentina and later to Canada, both times seeking stability and opportunity. He was a proud Canadian, Croatian and Argentinian. And as a multilingual and accomplished immigrant, he made great contributions to Quebec.
He embraced challenges early on, whether it was in mountain climbing expeditions (at the age of 17, he climbed the Aconcagua, the highest peak in South America), elite level competitive fencing (he represented Canada in the World Fencing Championships in Cuba) or mastering a 3rd and 4th language.
Arriving in Montreal in 1962, he first studied at Loyola College and then at McGill University in Engineering. At the McGill Fencing Club, he met his life partner, Christine (Kane) who was impressed by his charming and international demeanor.
A consummate optimist who delighted in problemsolving, Tomas enjoyed an exceptionally rewarding, varied and long career as an electrical engineer. He was an entrepreneur and also worked for a number of companies including Atomic Energy, Beak, Sandwell and SNCLavalin and, finally, as a consultant for Novopro, where his experience was much appreciated. His career led him to work in many different countries, which suited him well as he had a profound interest in other cultures and respect for people of different backgrounds.
Tomas' warmth and friendliness put everyone at ease. All who knew him would describe him as gentlemanly, charming and kind. If you had the good fortune of being his friend, you would have been entertained by his quick wit and predilection for puns, and astounded by his general knowledge, including history, geopolitical
events and geography, fed by a heavy daily dose of local and international news. Tomas was extremely creative: he was an artist, designer and chef. Never discouraged by a challenging recipe, his Gloria Torta
was legendary, as were his empanadas.
An accomplished sportsman, he was an avid tennis player throughout his life and adored swimming. He swam competitively while at McGill and later joined the Masters Club, and even completed his lifesaving classes in his 70s so that his grandsons could enjoy swimming at the tennis club in the absence of a
It's hard to imagine someone more devoted and loving to his family than Tomas. He will be deeply missed by Christine, his wife of 53 years, his daughters, Ingrid (Peter) and Alexandra (Frédéric), his grandsons Aidan, Julian, Tyler and Evan, his sister, Ana Maria, and his Kane inlaws, as well as many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his parents, Josip and Zvonimira Ana (Brucic), and his brother, Ljubomir.
Tomas was a remarkably interesting man who was hardwired with kindness, compassion and optimism; those who loved him will be forever marked and will strive to follow his example.
A celebration of Tomas' life will take place on June 23 at the Mount Royal Funeral Complex, 1297 Chemin de la Forêt, Outremont. The family will receive condolences starting at 1PM, a mass with tributes will begin at 2PM, and a reception will be held from 3PM to 5PM.
In lieu of flowers, a donation can be made to the Palliative Care Fund at the Cedars' Cancer Foundation in memory of Tomas Liebich or to the NDG Food Depot.