Mr. Lauri Mikael Vataja, age 92 years, passed away peacefully on Monday, March 11, 2019 in Bethammi Nursing Home.
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Lauri was born in Honkajoki, Finland on September 3, 1926 and came to Canada with young family, settling in Port Arthur in 1959. Lauri spent his early years working on ocean going freighters. He then worked as a carpenter for various companies including Sillman, Tom Jones, and in his later years, Lakehead Board of Education as a Maintenance Carpenter retiring in 1992. Outside of work he found the time to build three family homes, to renovate his camp at Surprise Lake and he was always ready to help others with their building projects. ￼
He was a hard worker but could easily be persuaded to play his accordion. He always had a quick wit about him and was ever the gentleman. He was a kind, generous, and gentle soul who will be sorely missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing him.
Lauri is survived by his best friend and companion Toini, sons Seppo (Bonnie) and Janne (Tanja); daughter Sirpa; grandchildren Seppo Matthew (Lindsay), Mike (Caitlin), and Shane, Samuel and Veera, and Kevin and great grandson Jace; Toini’s daughters (Lauri's nieces) Pirkko (Michel), Vuokko, Sinikka (Dan), Ritva (Jim), Eija (Urs). Lauri Pappa will be missed by Toini’s grandchildren and great grandchildren. Also survived by brothers Jaakko, Arvo, and numerous relatives in Finland, Canada and the United States.
He was predeceased by his wife Evi in 1976; his son Timo in 1982; his parents Hilma and Juho; brothers Martti and Kalevi, sister Mirja and son-in-law Ken.
Funeral services will be held on Monday, March 18, 2019 in Hilldale Lutheran Church at 11:00 am. Interment will take place in Riverside Cemetery following the reception. Arrangements have been entrusted to EVEREST FUNERAL CHAPEL, 299 Waverley Street at Algoma.
In lieu of flowers if you wish, donations may be made in Lauri’s memory to Hilldale Lutheran Church.
Please sign the online condolences at everestofthunderbay.com