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Marta Lysnewycz

October 26, 1926 - June 21, 2021

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On 21 June 2021 at 12:12 pm, Marta Lysnewycz went to meet her Maker. She leaves behind her only daughter, Christine Lysnewycz Holbert; son-in-law Dr. D. Vernon Holbert; grandchildren Dr. Daniel Vernon Holbert, Maggi Holbert, and Nicole Turner; and five great grandchildren, Sadie, Emmet, Logan, Charles, and June.

Funeral services will be held at 10:00 am on Thursday, June 24, 2021 at the Holy Myrrhbearers Antiochain Orthodox Church, 1957 Pleasant Valley Loop Rd, Naples, ID with Fr. Gregory Horton officiating. Vigil will be at 5:30 pm on Wednesday evening.

Marta was born in Hai, Chernihivsky Oblast, a tiny village in northeast Ukraine, in 1926. As a young girl in 1932 – 33, she survived Stalin’s fabricated “death by starvation” or Holodomor, when almost 11,000,000 Ukrainians perished even though there were sufficient crops which Stalin had confiscated. At age 15, she was sent to forced labor in Hitler’s Germany, never again to see any of what was left of her family. She survived WWII, even meeting and marrying her husband Stephan Lysnewycz, also Ukrainian, while she was interred in Germany. As refugees after the war, they elected to come to America, where the streets were paved with gold, they believed. After settling in the Ukrainian section of NYC, the Lower East Village, for a few years, they eventually moved Upstate to Kinderhook Lake, where they lived for many years. After their only daughter moved West, they followed to be near their grandchildren. Marta and her husband lived in Spokane, then relocated to Sandpoint, Idaho to her daughter’s home. After the death of her husband, Marta stayed on with daughter.

Marta spent her life taking care of others and growing vegetables and flowers, gardening was her passion. She grew the sweetest cantaloupes, raspberries, strawberries, and corn; people were amazed that she grew peanuts and tobacco in Upstate NY. There wasn’t a seed or cutting that she couldn’t coax into great abundance. She was a fabulous cook, famous in Upstate NY for her pizza and meatballs, even her Italian friends were envious of her pies and spaghetti with meatballs. Borshch and other Ukrainian dishes, she cooked often and perfected these traditional recipes. Her vareniki dough was the tenderest and tastiest of anyone’s. Her baked goods were heavenly, her pie crusts the flakiest. She had a way with animals, too: cats, birds, dogs, all creatures were drawn to her. She raised calves and piglets like they were her own babies. She learned from her mother to make and use folk medicines and remedies, gathering herbs and plants during different seasons to make pharmaceuticals to cure family and friends. She kept a vile concoction for stomach ailments that worked instantly, if you could get the nasty tasting stuff down your throat. She interpreted dreams and spoke with the recently dead, who would appear to her, unaware of the next steps to take, so she would pray for them to continue on their spiritual journey. Marta is on her own spiritual journey now. May it be joyous and pain-free, filled with family and beloveds, and blessed by God herself.