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Memorable Manitobans: Nikola Mathew “Nick” Zunic (1921-2006)

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Nikola Mathew Zunic
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Architect.

Born at Prilisce Dolnje, Croatia on 12 April 1921, son of Nikola Zunic (1901-1989) and Magdalena Zunic (1898-1986), he came to Canada in 1933 with his mother and sister, joining his father who had arrived earlier. They settled at Winnipeg and he attended Immaculate Conception School, Norquay School, Aberdeen Junior High School, and St. John’s Technical High School. He enrolled at the University of Manitoba in 1939 but his studies were interrupted by service in the Royal Canadian Air Force during the Second World War. He served as a navigator with 419 Squadron and was discharged in 1945 with the rank of Flight Officer. On returning from military service, he resumed his studies and graduated with a degree in Architecture in 1950. He practiced as an architect in partnership with Victor Sobkowich in the firm of Zunic and Sobkowich, designing churches, schools, and private homes around Manitoba. On 27 December 1948, he married Florence Marie “Flore” Jacques (1915-2002) at St. Mary’s Cathedral and they had two children. He served as President of the St. Boniface Chamber of Commerce (c1958). He died at Winnipeg on 6 April 2006 and was buried in the St. Boniface Cemetery.

Some of his architectural works in Manitoba included:

Building

Location

Year

Status

St. Thomas More School

52 Birchdale Avenue, Winnipeg

1955

 

L'Ecole du Precieux-Sang [Precious Blood School]

209 Kenny Street, Winnipeg

1955-1956

 

St. Boniface Fire Hall No. 3

864 Marion Street, Winnipeg

1956-1957

 

Frontenac School

866 Autumnwood Drive, Winnipeg

1957

 

Beliveau School

296 Speers Road, Winnipeg

1957

 

Amaranth Collegiate

Amaranth, RM of Alonsa

1961

Abandoned (c2005)

St. Boniface Public Library Norwood Branch

120 Eugenie Street, Winnipeg

1961

 

St. Boniface Public Library Provencher Park Branch

255 Avenue de la Cathedrale, Winnipeg

1961

 

St. Boniface Public Library Windsor Park Branch

955 Cottonwood Road, Winnipeg

1961

 

Phoenix School No. 1528

111 Alboro Street, Headingley

1963

 

Frontenac School (expansion)

866 Autumnwood Drive, Winnipeg

1964

 

Sources:

“Engagement notices,” Winnipeg Free Press, 21 December 1948, page 10.

Ville Cathedral de Saint Boniface: The Cathedral City, promotional pamphlet, c1958.

Obituary [Magdalena Zunic], Winnipeg Free Press, 23 August 1986, page 41.

Obituary [Nikola Zunic], Winnipeg Free Press, 17 June 1989, page 56.

Obituary [Flore Zunic], Winnipeg Free Press, 31 October 2002.

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 15 April 2006.

Obituaries and burial transcriptions, Manitoba Genealogical Society.

We thank Nathan Kramer and Anthony Wlock for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 15 June 2020

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