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"SOD" 2005 Obituary


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SODA o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.toronto_star 2005-05-30 published
Teen dies in Peel park ambush
By Jim WILKES, Staff Reporter
Dwayne LLOYD didn't stand a chance.
Desperately leaping over a fence to seek the shelter of a backyard, the 17-year-old Brampton youth was cut down in a hail of at least five bullets Saturday night from a gunman who fired repeatedly from a clump of evergreens at the edge of a neighbourhood park.
LLOYD fell to the lawn, where he died in the grass.
A 21-year-old pal was shot in the leg as he fled the park, but was able to limp into the subdivision before collapsing in a pool of blood in a driveway up the street. He's recovering from his wounds at William Osler Health Centre.
LLOYD's slaying was Peel's third homicide this year.
"I was freaking out," said Joanne ROTATORE, a mother of two, with a third on the way, whose home borders Dixie/Sandalwood Park, in the Bovaird Dr. and Dixie Rd. area of north-end Brampton.
"I was asleep, I heard gunshots and it woke me up."
The teen was slain after spending the day with Friends watching a three-on-three basketball tournament at nearby Harold M. Brathwaite Secondary School.
Police said LLOYD and his buddies were riding their bikes through the park about 10: 30 p.m. when they were fired upon at close range by a gunman hiding in the trees.
Peel police forensic officers used coloured strings to chart the trajectory of bullets from the evergreens, where shell casings were found, into backyards of homes in the quiet neighbourhood along Loons Call Cres.
Bullet strikes were found on fence posts and on parts of chainlink fencing, which was stripped of its plastic coating and twisted by one shot.
"I had a feeling that sooner or later, something like this was going to happen," ROTATORE said. "Ever since they built that high school (18 months ago), there have been gang fights and other stuff out there.
"To be honest with you, I'm shocked, but I'm not surprised."
While neighbours gathered in small clutches up the street, Peel officers marched side by side across a soccer pitch in the park, searching for clues to the shootings.
Forensic officers used a metal detector to recover bullets from the lawns of adjacent homes.
Some neighbours feared that gangs might be responsible for the attack.
Down the park pathway that winds out to Dixie Rd., wooden fences are spray-painted with gang markings and other symbols of an underworld of violence. Some have been X-ed out in an attempt to reclaim territory for the other side.
The shooting, said Jacinto AMARAL, whose home borders the park, was "scary."
AMARAL, his wife, two kids and his mother-in-law were watching television when the gunfire erupted. He told them all to duck for cover and was surprised by the eerie silence that followed the shootings.
"That's just crazy," AMARAL said of the ease with which young people seem to get guns. It's just ridiculous how easily accessible it is to them. It opens our eyes, that's for sure."
Eight houses up the street, Giancarlo SODA was watering his grass when he heard gunshots, then ran out front to see a young man lying in a neighbour's driveway, bleeding from the leg and screaming.
"It's a safe neighbourhood, but now you feel scared, you want to keep your kids inside," the 38-year-old father of two said.
Neighbour Pat MARCELLO watched police try to calm the wounded man and said he felt sympathy for the victims.
"He was screaming, moaning, he was in pain," said MARCELLO, 32. "And another kid was screaming that his brother had been shot.
"They're 17 years old, their whole lives ahead of them."
He said he's witnessed fights in the park behind the high school, including a recent brawl involving six teens with a crowd of hundreds egging them on.
"These kids were cheering them like animals," he recalled.
"They were enjoying it, they were loving it.
"I was disgusted."
An autopsy was planned for today.
Homicide detectives interviewed several people yesterday but were still trying to learn what provoked the attack.
Anyone with information can contact detectives at 905-453-3311, ext. 3205.

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SODEN o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.toronto_star 2005-02-07 published
'Gentlest' artist shared many gifts
Scholarship to be named in honour of Brad Johnston
Animator killed during family visit to town in B.C.
By Catherine DUNPHY, Obituary Writer
They were best buddies as well as brothers and no one thought anything about it when they decided to head out for a beer and a game of pool after a big Saturday night family dinner in Parksville, British Columbia, a small town 20 minutes up the coast from Nanaimo on Vancouver Island.
The JOHNSTON boys used to go there as kids on visits from their home in Pickering and dig for crabs along Qualicum Beach. A quiet corner of paradise for retirees and tourists, it's the last place one would expect a murder to occur.
But Ian and Brad JOHNSTON picked the wrong pub that night.
A few of the locals didn't like the cut of the jib of the two Torontonians in town visiting their 90-year-old grandmother and followed the pair out to the parking lot of the Rec Room Night Club at closing time. Police were called but not in time. Both brothers had been beaten, but Brad JOHNSTON was severely injured. He died two days later, January 10, at Victoria General Hospital. Five men have been charged with manslaughter and one count of assault causing bodily harm.
Brad JOHNSTON was 24, and he had never been in a fight in his life.
"He was the kindest and gentlest kid you'd ever want to meet," said his father, Stuart JOHNSTON. " It's just who he was. I don't think I ever heard him say an unkind word."
"I can't ever remember him getting into trouble with anyone," said Ian JOHNSTON, Brad's older brother by 25 months. "Everybody loved him. He was soft spoken and always living in his imagination."
JOHNSTON was an artist. He left behind a stack of sketchbooks about four feet high at his father's Toronto lakeside condo where he had been living for the past 4 1/2 years. He drew in bars, he drew in restaurants, even on road trips with his buddies. He carried his sketchbook everywhere. One of his last sketches was of his father sitting in Air Canada's Maple Leaf lounge, wine glass in hand, as the family waited for their flight out west.
"In fact, it was the only sketch he ever did of me," said Stuart JOHNSTON.
Brad JOHNSTON drew achingly beautiful life drawings, but he was also a tattoo artist: he created five of the seven mythic tattoos on his brother's left arm and designed the delicate flower around the ankle of his girlfriend Alyssa SODEN. And he was an airbrush artist whose work graced many motorcycle helmets and goalie masks.
A gifted sculptor, he had fashioned a clay horse's head for his father and stepmother Bernadette (they own a horse racing and breeding farm in Orangeville, Ontario), a cat for his mother Sherrie and a candle holder for Ian, for what would turn out to be his last Christmas.
Thoughtful, something of an aesthete, he studied and often pondered life's unknowables. "He was like a prophet and had more faith than anyone I know," his girlfriend wrote in the email telling Friends of his death.
JOHNSTON immersed himself in worlds of his own making. As one of four artists working on an animation series being produced and developed by RM Productions, an animation company based in Mississauga, he was bringing to life futuristic characters and their fantasy worlds. He helped create Defenders of the Scroll, a half-hour action-adventure animation series that comes with the tag line: In some places, you should be afraid of the shadows.
In the case of Demon Chasers, a half-hour sci-fi humour animation series he worked on, the world is Asator and it is described on the website as "a utopia in every sense" except that "as is the case with most utopias, someone had to come along and spoil it."
Right now, both series are strictly in the pitch phase.
"I hope to see the RM projects go into full production for television release," wrote friend and fellow animator Kevin STOTT in an email from Thailand. "It would be a joy to see his work on television."
The two had been classmates at Max The Mutt Animation School in downtown Toronto. School owners Maxine SCHACKER and Tina SEAMAN still remember JOHNSTON at his intake interview five years ago. Tall (6-foot-4) and at 140 pounds so slight he moved with the grace of a smaller man, a flush had spread across the smattering of freckles on his fine-featured face as his mom recalled how he used to draw over the walls at home.
He got in, but he had to work hard. He didn't pass every course the first time round, SCHACKER noted. "He was so quiet, so modest and unassuming," SEAMAN recalled. "There was a nice sensitive line to his line drawings in his final portfolio."
After JOHNSTON graduated in 2003, he supported himself with a few contract animation assignments but also modelling jobs, a couple of stints as an extra in movies and working summers on the harbour cruise ships.
"Some of us used to tell him to borrow some money and open up a tattoo shop, get a practical job," said Graham "Whitey" ADDISON, a bartender. He first met JOHNSTON in Grade 9 at Dunbarton High School in Pickering. ("I don't know why we became Friends. I was rowdy, we were so opposite.")
But JOHNSTON always replied that he would never compromise. "His dream was art," ADDISON said.
An avid video gamer, JOHNSTON was working with some others on the prototype of a new game. "He was like a wizard: he could break down any game from an artist point of view," his brother said. According to Stuart JOHNSTON, he had also been sketching characters for the new work of a British author.
But his special project was a trilogy, an illustrated novel along the lines of Lord of the Rings. He had already devised the storyline and had drawn many of the characters.
Ian JOHNSTON is a chef, but he has promised to complete his brother's trilogy.
"I will finish his story and put it out there," he said. "It shouldn't be sitting in a box when his ideas are so brilliant."
There will be a scholarship in his name at the animation school and a namesake in the red-haired colt born on his father's horse farm a few days after his death. And there is also this, part of a poem he wrote when he got up Christmas morning. "May the spirit of giving live on in you, /even if for no reason./And to those of you now come and gone; /those no longer with us./I'll see you when I get there, until then, /Merry Christmas."

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SODERBERG o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.toronto_star 2005-05-12 published
SODERBERG, Annie " Ann" (SACKFIELD)
Passed away peacefully at The Ellington, Guelph on Wednesday, May 11, 2005. Ann (SACKFIELD) SODERBERG in her 91st year. Beloved wife of the late Kurt SODERBERG (1980.) Loving and much loved mother of Marilyn KIRKUP and her husband Jack of Guelph. Sadly missed by her four grand_sons, Terry (Kim) of Pickering, Brent (Jill), Greg (Karen) and John (Joyce), all of Guelph. Loved great-grandma and nana of Brandon, Meghan, Isabelle, Meredith, Kaitlin, Danielle, Jarrett and Darcy. Dear sister of Elizabeth BEVAN, Lillian WEBBER, Olga PEER, Ed SACKFIELD, the late Margaret FLETCHER, Tom, Ellis, Robert and Joseph SACKFIELD. Ann will be remembered for her enjoyment of euchre at the Evergreen Seniors Centre and Trinity United Church. Many thanks to Dr. DANIELLI for her kindness and compassion, Rev. Andrew COMAR for his visits and to all the staff of The Ellington for their excellent care. Friends may call at the Gilchrist Chapel - McIntyre and Wilkie Funeral Home, One Delhi Street, Guelph (from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday). Service will be held at the Gilchrist Chapel on Friday, May 13 at 11: 00 a.m. with The Reverend Andrew COMAR officiating. A reception will follow in the Trillium Room of the Funeral Home. Cremation with inurnment Prospect Cemetery. As expressions of sympathy and in lieu of flowers, donations to the Canadian Cancer Society would be appreciated. We invite you to leave your memories and donations online at: www.gilchristchapel.com

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SODERHOLM o@ca.on.york_county.toronto.globe_and_mail 2005-03-28 published
GRUZUK, Robert Michael "Bob" (December 16, 1944-March 26, 2005)
The family of Bob GRUZUK, of Wasaga Beach, Ontario, announces his death, on Saturday March 26, 2005. Bob died peacefully, at home, surrounded by his family. Bob leaves his wife of 35 years, Lorraine (JOHANNESSON) GRUZUK, and his children Riali JOHANNESSON- GRUZUK, of Toronto, Michael GRUZUK, of Vancouver, his daughter-in-law Carolina SODERHOLM and his grand-daughter Calla. Friends will be received at the Carruthers and Davidson Funeral Home, 7313 Highway 26 (Main Street), Stayner (1-866-428-2637) Tuesday from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. Funeral Service will be held at Centennial United Church, 234 William Street, Stayner (corner of Oak Street) Wednesday March 30, 2005 at 1 o'clock. Bob's family ask that you do not send flowers, but if you would like to make a donation in Bob's memory, please consider the Heart and Stroke Foundation. For more information or to sign the on-line guest book, log on to www.generations.on.ca

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SODJA o@ca.on.middlesex_county.london.london_free_press 2005-05-22 published
SODJA, Franc
At Babcock Community Care Centre, Wardsville, on Friday, May 20, 2005, Franc, dear husband of the late Franciska SODJA (2004,) in his 75th year. Dear father of Cvetka KOMAC (Bojan, husband) in Solvenija. Stepfather of Mihelca HRNCIC (Steve JOSIFOVIC, companion) Chicago, Illinois, Svetka SODJA (late Srecko, husband) Slovenija, Slavic VOVK, Florida. Predeceased by his stepson Franci VOVK. Dear brother of Malci OBLAK (Janez, husband) of Slovenija, also survived by several grandchildren. A special thank you to the dedicated staff at Babcock Community Care Centre and Meadow Park Retirement Home where Franc lived his last year. Visitors will be received at John T. Donohue Funeral Home, 362 Waterloo Street at King Street, London, on Monday, May 23, from 2-4 and 7-9 o'clock, where the funeral service will be held on Tuesday, May 24 at 12 noon. Interment in St. Peter's Cemetery. Donations to the Heart and Stroke Foundation or Canadian Diabetes Association would be appreciated.

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