Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Walter Klymkiw (1926-2000)

Educator, community activist.

Born at Saranchucky, Ukraine on 3 October 1926, he came to Canada with his mother in 1928. He worked as a teacher and Principal at St. Vital for thirty years and became recognized as one of the finest educators of the area. He was the Principal of Hastings School (1961-1973) and Glenwood School (1978-1980) before he retired from teaching in 1984.

Active in the Ukrainian community, he worked with the Ukrainian National Federation and the Ukrainian Cultural and Educational Center, serving as President of the latter. He was a partner in DK Attractions, a company that brought Ukrainian artists to Canada. Having a lifelong passion for Ukrainian music, Klymkiw became the conductor of the Ukranian National Federation choir in 1951, which he continued until his death.

He received several awards in recognition of his community service, including the Shevchenko Medal from the Ukrainian Canadian Congress, a Manitoba Centennial Medal from the Manitoba Historical Society (1970), an Honorary Doctorate in Canon Law from St. Andrew’s College, and the Taras Shevchenko Medal of Ukraine (1992).

He died at Winnipeg on 4 December 2000.


Annual Reports of the Manitoba Department of Education, Manitoba Legislative Library.

“St. Vital School Division No. 6,” Winnipeg Free Press, 16 December 1971, page 41.

“St. Vital School Division No. 6,” Winnipeg Free Press, 22 June 1973, page 23.

“St. Vital S.D. No. 6,” Winnipeg Free Press, 12 September 1978, page 41.

“St. Vital School Division No. 6,” Winnipeg Free Press, 16 January 1980, page 54.

“Choir director puts ‘small dent’ in communism,” Winnipeg Free Press, 29 March 1992, page A2.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 6 December 2000, page 39.

This page was prepared by Kris Keen, Nathan Kramer, and Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 10 February 2016

Memorable Manitobans

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