Many across the province are remembering long-time philanthropist and champion of the arts, Jacqueline Shumiatcher, who died at the age of 97 earlier this week.
“Jacqui was wonderful. Very, very dynamic. Just had a wonderful sense of humour,” said Norman Bercovich, a longtime family friend of the Shumiatcher’s.
Shumiatcher was born in 1923 in France. When she was four-years-old, she and her family moved to Regina, Saskatchewan.
In 1955, she married Morris Shumiatcher, and the two began supporting artistic organizations around the city.
“You can find the Shumiatcher name - Jacqui and (Morris’s) name - throughout the city, at the Globe Theatre, at the Mackenzie Art Gallery, The Shumiatcher Scupture Court and also out at the University,” Bercovich said.
Shumiatcher also supported individual artists, as well as students through contributions to scholarships.
“Her legacy is one of culture, it’s one of generosity, it’s one of truly embodying the Saskatchewan spirit of caring for the community and doing things for the community, and just radiating a certain joy,” said Thomas Chase, interim president and vice-chancellor of the University of Regina.
She was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2017 and received the Saskatchewan Order of Merit in 2001.
On Twitter, Premier Scott Moe wrote, “She was an outstanding representative of Saskatchewan and contributed vastly to her community. She will be missed greatly.”
Russell Mirasty, Saskatchewan’s Lieutenant Governor, said he knew Shumiatcher personally, and called her ‘a wonderful person.’
“The tremendous support she gave many, many organizations and the city and the province is astounding, really,” Mirasty said. “She will be remembered for all that work and support that she provided for different organizations around the province here.”
“She lived life to the fullest at 97 years of age, said Bercovish. “I always had the feeling that Jacqui was always moving. And she squeezed every single moment out of every single day.”