Iris Hukezalie

Obituary of Iris Doreen Hukezalie

HUKEZALIE Iris Doreen (Sims)
On the first morning of the new year, Iris slipped away after 97 and three quarter years of an amazing life. She was with her family, and showed a tenacity to stay with us that was reflective of the way she lived her life. 
She was pre-deceased by her husband, Jack, who passed away too soon in 1991.
Idee, as she was lovingly known, was an incredible mother to her two sons Mark, now in Norfolk, Robert (Galina) from Florida and daughter Jayn of Port Dover. Grandma Idee was much loved by her four grandsons: Kyle Hukezalie, of Vancouver; Adam Szpakowski with Emily and baby Maya, of Port Dover; Nick Hukezalie and Kayla Conroy of New York; and Mike Hukezalie of Toronto/Walsh.
Iris instilled a love of music, reading, curiosity and service in all her family members. 
Iris is survived by her two younger sisters and their families. They were known as "The Amazing Sims Sisters". Joan Code, now in Brantford, with whom Iris travelled the world, and Sylvia Bedforth of Bracebridge. 
Iris and her sisters were born in Kirkland Lake, Ontario where their parents Ivor and Annie Sims, who had immigrated from Wales, worked hard to raise a family in the challenging Northern Ontario Community. Harsh winters and short summers built character and self-reliance in the girls that showed in the way they lived their lives and raised their own families.
Iris met her husband Jack, who was also from Kirkland Lake, in Niagara Falls when where their children were born. 
Iris is remembered and loved by an extended and far reaching Hukezalie family, also hardy Northerners. 
Besides her family, Iris's greatest passion was teaching children! She taught in many schools around Ontario, but her longest association was with Port Dover Public School, where she remained as a part-time and volunteer teacher well into her senior years. Her teaching career began in her home town of Kirkland Lake. Next was Niagara Falls where she met and married Jack. He had returned from WWII in Europe where he was captured at Dieppe and spent three years as a prisoner of war. He joined Ontario Hydro on his return and moved to Niagara to work on a new Hydro project. Everywhere you go, Iris is remembered fondly by former students. She's had a lifelong friendship with one of her early PDPS students Karen (Lewis) Koluk. Karen visited Iris not long before she passed away, and Iris was very happy to see her. Iris was very active in the community. She volunteered at a variety of local services, most notably for 40 years at Norfolk General Hospital. Among many awards for her support, she received the Ontario Volunteer Service Award in a special ceremony at Queen's Park. She touched many people's hearts in her life, and we are thankful to those who touched hers. Iris's most special friends, for more than fifty-five years, were her neighbours in Port Dover, Marg and Don Tomlinson. They loved and cared for her as a family member. "Idee" got her nickname from their kids, Lisa and Scott. It stuck for the rest of her life. We would like to thank Dr. Kerry Sinkowski and her Angels, Dawn, Sue and Chris; Dr. Dave Kennedy and his assistant Danny; and the incredible staff at Norfolk General Hospital who worked tirelessly day in and day out to help and care for their patients. Iris was one of those caught at the hospital in the covid lockdowns, and the staff did everything possible to make her stay as comfortable as possible. Iris spent her last two years in Norview Lodge, in Norfolk Pinery where her blue eyes, big smile and persistent personality won the hearts of everyone. There are not words to describe the dedication, care and professionalism shown by every single person working there. You held our Mom in your arms and your hearts. You are family. And thank you for the kindness and care you showed to us, the Hukezalie family. Visitation for Iris will be held at Thompson Waters Funeral Home 102 First Ave, Port Dover (519)583-1530 on Saturday January 13, 2024 from 1:00pm to 3:00pm, followed by a Memorial Service in the chapel at 3:00pm. Live steaming of the Ceremony for Iris will be available at the following link,
As expression of sympathy, donations may be made to either Norfolk General Hospital, Norview Lodge or a charity of your choice. Online condolences and/or donations can be made at