It is with great sadness that the family of José Balcewich announces her passing on Friday, May 26, 2023, in Fort Frances, Ontario, with family by her side.

She was born on July 7, 1937 in Emo, Ontario, to Harry and Anna Smits. She grew up in Stratton and Fort Frances before moving to Winnipeg where she met and married “Ike” in the summer of 1956. They were blessed with three children, Edward, Patricia and Daniel.

José will be greatly missed by her children Ed Balcewich (Joanne) and Dan of Winnipeg; grandchildren Lyndon (Gabrielle) and Ainsley Balcewich (Gilles), Misty Thomas (Seth), Brittany Balcewich and Alexandra Balcewich (Dave); great-grandchildren Carter, Stanley, Louis and Miriam; siblings Marie Cunningham, Francise Anderson, Anna (Lyle) Busch, Leona (Gerald) Rucker, Edith (Kenneth) Funk; sister-in-law Juliette Smits; as well as numerous nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her parents Harry and Anna Smits; husband Ike; daughter Patricia; daughter-in-law Kathy; brothers John, Laurent and Harry Smits; sisters Jeanne Belanger, Laura Dillon; in-laws Doris Smits, Lorraine Smits, Vic Belanger, Ross Anderson, and Cliff Cunningham and Jack Dillon.

José’s request to be cremated has taken place and the family will spread her ashes in a private ceremony at a later date.

A Celebration of Life is being planned for José on Saturday, June 24, 2023, in Fort Frances from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at La Place Rendez-Vous on Idylwild Drive.

In lieu of flowers, José would be pleased if you could spend quality time with your loved ones and/or donate to your local animal shelter.