With deep sorrow, we announce our aunt Sisko’s tragic death in a car accident. Sisko Sirkka Marttinen was born to Niilo and Sirkka in Kouvola, Finland, on February 11, 1942. She emigrated to Canada with her first husband, Jussi (Karl) Kahila, in the late 1960s, staying briefly with her older sister, Kaija-Leena Stewart, and her family in Saskatchewan before moving to Port Coquitlam in 1969. There they reunited with good friends from Finland, the Kivinens, then soon moved to Burnaby, where Sisko worked in the auto industry for many years. After her marriage ended in the mid-70s, Sisko was introduced to Ossi Launonen by those friends, and a beautiful, true partnership began; they were married on June 16, 1980. Sisko and Ossi shared a love of nature and travel, especially camping, and of reading; a great sense of humour; devotion to all animals, but especially their cats; and infinite kindness and optimism: “No complaints” and “The better days are coming!” were Sisko’s mottos. Sisko and Ossi moved to Courtenay in 1991 and loved their life on the Island. Their home was so much a part of nature and nature was their true home; they loved to share it with visitors and neighbors, human and animal alike.
Sisko was predeceased by her parents and by her beloved sister Leena in 2010. She leaves to mourn her passing the love of her life of more than 40 years, husband Ossi; her nephew Seppo Belcher (Lynn) of North Battleford, Saskatchewan; her niece Wendy Stewart (Brian Wall) of Vestal, New York; four great-nieces and nephews and four great-great nieces and nephews. Also grieving Sisko are her many dear friends, in Canada and in Finland, and good neighbours. Seppo and Wendy are grateful to so many and give special thanks to Sirkka and Andy (Anssi) Kivinen, Evelyn Bowers, Albert and Gail Ballaan, Chris McIntosh and all the staff at St. Joseph’s, and Denis Benard, for their friendship and care of Sisko and Ossi.
A small celebration of Sisko’s life was held on January 20 in the chapel at St. Joseph’s General Hospital, Comox, BC. If desired, a memorial contribution in her name can be made to a charity dear to Sisko’s heart, the SPCA: (http://www.spca.bc.ca/branches/comox-valley/).