Tamara Pohuliaj (née Kowalenko), 88, of Lorain, fell asleep in the Lord, Sunday, February 10, 2013 in Avon Oaks Caring Community in Avon following an inevitable decline due to Alzheimer's disease.
She was born November 21, 1924 in Kirovohrad, Ukraine. During World War II, she escaped communism in Ukraine and settled in Munich, Germany with family. She finished high school there and went to university in Hamburg, Germany were she received her degree as a pharmacist. She immigrated to Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1956, then, settled in Lorain in 1957.
Mrs. Pohuliaj was a Ukrainian school teacher in Germany and in Lorain, and taught children and adults at Taras Shevchenko School of Ukrainian Studies of St. Vladimir’s Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral in Parma. She also worked during the summertime for ODUM (Association of American Youth of Ukrainian Descent) summer camps in Accord, NY for many years.
Tamara was a member of the Ukrainian Democratic Republican Party in Germany and America, the Bahriany Foundation, and the Ukrainian National Women's League of America. She was actively involved in the Ukrainian National Republic Government-in-Exile and Ukrainian National Council-in-Exile in Germany and the U.S. until Ukraine’s independence. Tamara was an outspoken patriot for a free Ukraine and was a distinguished orator. She was frequently summoned throughout the Ukrainian community to give speeches in the U.S. and in Canada on several different occasions and for UDRP.
She was a member of St. Mary’s Ukrainian Orthodox Church in South Lorain. There she was a member of the church choir and the parish sisterhood. She enjoyed her grandchildren, singing, reading, writing, following Ukrainian politics and current events, and sharing and teaching the Ukrainian culture and customs to her family and others.
She will be deeply missed by her son Alexander (Toni) Pohuliaj and daughter Larissa M. (Richard) Reidy both of Lorain, granddaughters Tania (Nicholas) Skyba, Tina (David) Figueroa, Natasha (Eric) Daina, Nadya and Larissa J. Reidy, and 3 great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her husband Konstantin Pohuliaj in 1999, her parents Mychajlo and Neonila (née Udovychenko) Kowalenko, sister Raisa Ichtiarow, and a brother Hryhory Kowalenko.
The family would like to send our sincerest heartfelt thanks to the very talented, compassionate, and professional staff in Porter Pavilion at Avon Oaks Caring Community. Thank you for the comfort, care, love, and kindness you showed to our mother and grandmother, and for all of the help you were to her and us. We are forever grateful. May God Bless you!
Her family will receive friends on Friday, February 15th from 4:00 PM until time of Parastas at 7:00 PM in Richard J. Reidy Funeral Home 1783 East 31st Street, South Lorain. The funeral service will be Saturday morning at 10:00 AM at St. Mary’s Ukrainian Orthodox Church, 2304 East 34th Street and Gary Avenue, Lorain. Very Rev. Fr. Dennis Kristof, pastor and Very Rev. Fr. John Nakonechny pastor of St. Vladimir’s Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral in Parma will officiate. She will be laid to rest in St. Andrew Cemetery, South Bound Brook, New Jersey.
The family suggests memorial contributions to the Ukrainian Museum Archives 1202 Kenilworth Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44113 or to the Ukrainian Cultural Arts Association of Greater Cleveland P.O. Box 347263 Parma, Ohio 44134.