"Gramps", as I affectionately call him, is a wise, wise man.
He is in his 96th year and is a true inspiration. We have long talks together and he passes on timeless advice and great wisdom.
I am very happy he is sharing himself with the world through this website, though he has been on Facebook for years now and just loves technology and his Mac computer! He even got himself a new PC laptop recently!
When he was a boy there were only 2 telephones in his city. Oh, the evolution he has witnessed! I remember the day I took him my iPhone - I recorded his voice, we took photos and he played a little solitaire!
Sometimes I have to explain the technology, and sometimes he teaches me because he watches the news, reads everything he can get his hands on and is current. You'd think he was still 40 years old! His spirit is timeless and indomitable.
Gramps sums himself up as an "artist - great grandfather - thinker"
To be a great grandfather he took this route:
1. First he survived WWII. The bravery that took! You can watch the documentary here. Especially Part 5 where he explains that with one bullet, it would have all been over.
2. He married the first love of his life, Barbara "Bunty". (I will allow him to tell you that love story one day)...She helped him as a Prisoner of War and they had never met!
3. They had 3 beautiful children together after they fell in love when Gramps was released from 5 years in captivity near Poland. They married in a beautiful ceremony in a church in Wales, United Kingdom and moved to Canada for greater opportunity in 1957. They came to Canada with little in their pockets, many dreams and much love!
4. Denys gave his children the best possible education: they all went to University, two of them becoming educators, one a medical doctor. They are all artists, too!
5. Denys now has 9 grandchildren and combined they have earned: a Diploma in Criminology, 5 Bachelor's Degrees, 1 Masters' degree and a PhD in Music!
6. Denys now has 6 great - grandchildren spread from Dubai, UAE to Ottawa to the Ukraine!
7. How many Grandpa's can say they have been married for over 60 years of their life?
My Grandma, Barbara "Bunty" Cook encouraged Denys' artistic career. She kept detailed records of their life together, especially the rise of his artistic career. Thank you, Bunty, for helping us build this website so many years later! Your organization and love for Gramps touched my heart each time we were in his studio together going through the 'old' memories.
I love you, Bunty, and I look forward to dancing with you when we meet in Heaven for the first time. Only 4 Cook Grandchildren had the privilege to meet you before you passed away to the Next World. You are lovingly missed and Grandpa tells us stories of the best of your life together - like keeping bees, being a true friend to all your neighbours, and hosting your own radio program. The fossilized wood in your honour still sits on the grounds of the Royal Alberta Museum ♡
Denys' re-married when he met his loving wife, Doreen was "Grandma" to us all for many years. They met dancing! She has recently passed on as well...
Doreen's colours were "pink and rose and blush" which she proudly wore every day. She was like a rose garden of love, true kindness and joy. She had a wonderful sense of humour and loved with her entire heart. We are so lucky to have had her in the Cook family!