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John Yuzyk was born on April 19, 1913 in Rhein, Saskatchewan. He grew up in a Ukrainian pioneer family. His father Dmytro Yuzyk came to Canada at the age of fifteen from Kopychyntsi, Husiatyn county, Crownland of Galicia, Austro-Hungarian Empire (now Ukraine) and settled on a farm in Kamsack, Saskatchewan. John studied music and received a diploma from the London College of Music in 1940. He recorded two albums (1960) and his songs were played on ethnic radio stations. In Regina, he worked for Saskatchewan Civil Service in the Assessment Branch.
During the Second World War, he served overseas with the Royal Canadian Air Force (R.C.A.F.) as an aircraft mechanic. There, he joined other Canadian Ukrainian personnel and together they formed the Ukrainian Canadian Servicemen’s Association (UCSA). In 1959, he was appointed a Pilot Officer of the R.C.A.F. He retired as a Primary Reserve Officer in 1966 with a rank of a Flight Lieutenant, but was changed to the rank of Captain in 1968. After his honorable discharge from the military, John Yuzyk dedicated his life to Ukrainian veterans organizations in Canada. He was a longtime member of the Ukrainian Canadian Veterans Branch #141, Royal Canadian Legion and also president of the Ukrainian Canadian Veterans Association of Canada (UCVA; 1971-1974).
In Winnipeg, he worked in real estate for 35 years and retired in 1986. John Yuzyk was an active member of many Ukrainian organizations and received many awards and recognitions from the Government of Manitoba and the Ukrainian community. He passed away in Winnipeg on October 21, 2003.
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Revised by Orest Martynowych (May 2020).