It was with profound regret that members of The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada learned of the death on 29 May, 2006, of Brigadier General Stephen F. Andrunyk OMM, CStJ, CD. “Steve”, as he was usually known when off duty, passed away in his 83rd year at Barrie’s Royal Victoria Hospital. A World War II veteran with service in Italy and north- west Europe with the Loyal Edmonton regiment, he remained in the Canadian Armed Forces on return to Canada in 1945 and served in various training, staff, and command appointments until retirement from the Regular Forces in December 1975 after 34 years of continuous service.
His major military appointments included command of the 2nd Battalion of The Queen’s Own Rifles 1964-1966, senior Training Advisor to the Commander of the Tanzanian Peoples Defence Forces 1966-1967, Chief of Staff and Deputy Commander of Ontario Region 1969-1971, and Canadian Forces Attache in Warsaw, Poland 1972-1974. On transfer to Supplementary Reserve in 1976, he served as Deputy Commander and then Commander of the Central Militia Area 1976-1980.
On retirement from the Regular Forces, he was appointed President and General Manager of the Ontario Safety League, serving in that post until reaching retirement age in 1988.
For a number of years he was editor of The Powder Horn and was a regular visitor to Moss Park Armoury to attend Regimental events in Toronto, including Birthday ceremonies and Change of Command parades, as well as to meet former comrades and old friends at the annual Officer’s Mess Dinner and the Christmas Luncheon. He was a valuable member of committees formed to plan the roles The Queen’s Own would take in the celebrations of D-Day+50 as well the organization of the Annual Toronto Garrison Ball which the Regiment hosted under his chairmanship in 1992.
Brigadier General Andrunyk’s service to his country was matched by his service to the Church, serving various Protestant Chapels during his time in the military. He was a dedicated and active member of St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church (King St.) Toronto and Essa Road Presbyterian Church, Barrie. Many boards of management benefited from his wisdom and many children grew up under the caring leadership in Sunday School of a military man who loved the Lord and served him faithfully.