Dana Marie Jonak

14 March, 19365 January, 2021
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In Loving Memory

With sadness, yet a deep sense of gratitude for the wonderful life she lived, we announce the passing of our beloved mother Dana Marie Jonak, peacefully as she slept, on Tuesday January 5th, 2021. Dana was born on March 14, 1936 in the Czech Republic and came to Canada in 1939 with her family who was employed by Bata shoe company, first moving to Batawa, then Midland finally Thornhill, Ontario. Despite long-standing heart problems, she truly had the heart of a lion and maintained a positive attitude until the end, which was in Markham Stoufville Hospital. Predeceased by her husband Josef and daughter Katherine (John), she was the devoted mother of Barbara (Paul), Mark (Vicky) and Peter (Kim) and grandmother to Tanya, Leah, Joseph, Bryce, Kristin, Danae, Aiden, Jenna and Evan.

Dana's life will be remembered by a small service with virtual live feed on Friday January 22nd and can be accessed by clicking the following link:

For online condolences and expressions of sympathy please use the Kane-Jerrett funeral home website. Since Dana was a passionate nature-lover, donations to the Canadian Wildlife Federation or the St. Michael's Hospital Foundation (cardiac research) can be made.

The family is welcoming photo submissions online to create a memorial life portrait, please use the link on the website.



Dana Marie Jonak

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Leah Jonak

January 22, 2021

One of my favourite photos of Grandma and I (1989)

Josef Jonak

January 22, 2021

My dear Aunt Dana, I will be always grateful to you helping me to come to Canada many years ago. I do admire your passion for nature and your kindness to everyone else around you. I am so proud of you how well you brought up your children on your own. Not easy task to do. I will truly miss you.

Josef Jonak

Joandice Tigley

January 22, 2021

My husband and I will miss Dana. We know Dana from the bird study group and Richmond Hill Naturalist club.

Dana taught me how to bake her Mother’s almond cake and grow Clivia. Dana was a generous hostess and shared her bird and gardening knowledge with a sense of humour.
It was a joy for her to share her Pelee trip stories with us and photos of the birds her daughter had seen. Her gentle soul touched us deeply.

Dana will be fondly remembered. May she Rest In Peace and perpetual light shine upon her soul. 💕

Danae O'Neill

January 21, 2021

Words can't express how much I miss you already. You passed so much on to me, and I see so much of myself in you. Our love of art, wild animals, cats, sweet treats & baked goods, shopping, bathrobes, keepsakes and trinkets, good tv dramas and so much more. I miss your cooking, your funny bird calls, your dry sarcastic wit and you joking around with my dad. Christmas will never be the same without you. I'm so grateful for everything you taught me, and the kindness you showed to me. How you opened your home to me when I was in a bad place and you were always so kind.
I love you so much and I can just imagine how beautiful your gardens are in heaven.

Jana Zapletalova /Reece

January 20, 2021

It was nice meeting you great aunt Dana in May 2015. Rest in piece❣️

Edward Zapletal

January 17, 2021

One of my greatest memories of spending time together were the times that we shared at Christmas. Regardless of where it was hosted, everyone pitched in to put on a fabulous feast of Czech food. It was always very loud with kids yelling and fighting, and parents using mild threats to reduce the noise - all to no avail. In recent years, I visited with Aunt Dana and we had some really good conversations about family, and family history. Occasionally I would arrive at her place in Thornhill and would ring the door bell, but there was no answer. I quickly learned that I should always check the back yard first by yelling, "hello, hello, hello" as I walked around to the back yard. Sure enough, she was there in all her glory tending her flowers and bird feeders! Then we'd have tea or coffee and some home-baked goodies. One of my many enduring memories of a truly remarkable woman!

Peter Jonak

January 15, 2021

Mom, what can you say. you were a strong willed person and you fought to the end and never gave up.

She was the most resourceful and creative person I knew, maybe because of where and when she grew up I can not say. I am always amazed of what she fixed or the thing-ma-bobers she created for her garden and her birds down in her makeshift little workshop. I also think that she was a great painter as well as she took this up when I was younger and was really good. She was always there when I needed her with advice or any assistance she could give. I remember when I moved to Burlington she help me and Kim to weed the overgrow gardens we had at the time. Three hours it took, pulling and transplanting on a hot day, but she was there for it all helping out.

I think of a women who raised four children on her own and all I can say is wow. She loved us all and she taught me what is right and what to fight for and gave me a strong sense of independence.

I look at my life and I say thank you mom and I will forever miss you.

Kristin O'Neill

January 12, 2021

There are many things that will remind me of my Grandma Jonak: watching Downton Abbey and The Crown, loud kisses on the cheek, and flowers flowers flowers! But most of all, I will remember feeling loved. From the great meals she cooked when we visited, to being spoiled with toys and treats, and staying with her during hockey games and school rotations. I will forever cherish that time spent together, and know how lucky I am to have had a Grandma who was always there with open arms and unending support. I will love and miss you forever
xoxo Kristin

Barbara Jackson

January 11, 2021

So sorry to learn of Dana's passing. I have many fond (and funny) memories of time spent with Dana at the Richmond Hill Naturalists meetings and with the Bird Study Group where she generously shared her extensive knowledge and love of nature.

Barbara J.

John, Jenna and Aiden Beazley

January 10, 2021

Dana was such a special grandma who enriched the lives of Aiden and Jenna in such profound ways. She taught them the love of nature and a curiosity for all that is in the natural world. Dana’s love of family and for nourishing us with her amazing food as she gathered as many as she could around her table have enriched us with such beautiful and lasting memories. I was so blessed to have you in my life Dana. We love you grandma and will miss you so very much.


Dana at age 5


Dana as a bride cutting the wedding cake with husband Joe


Dana in her wedding dress


Dana with her first 2 children, March 1962


Dana with cousin Jirina (Odlozil) first meeting on Czech Republic trip 2017


Dana with her first grandchild Tanya, Vickie (mom) and great-Grandmother


Dana and Peter on the Czech Republic trip


Dana with Barb standing on the street in Zlin, her birth-town


Dana with her cousins and their children, Pravcice, Czech republic