Romanko-Vasile-and-ElenaVasile Romanko was born in Voloca, Bucovina and grew up there. He attended the village school but as a young man he decided to leave his land of birth and emigrate to Canada along with many other Romanians and Ukrainians in 1898.
Once in Canada he worked where he was able to find a job and earned enough money to file for a homestead in Boian in 1903. He cleared enough land and put up the necessary buildings so that by 1906 he received the title to this quarter.
In 1903 he married Eleana Cutzangavich, daughter of Daniel and Vaselena Cutzangavich. Together Vasile and his young bride built a bordei (a sod house) and began farming. The first two children were born in the sod house, and while still living in this shelter, the Romankos had some frightening experiences. One rainy day Elena opened her door to throw out the dishwater and was surprised to see a big bear sniffing near the door. Who was more surprised? On another occasion Vasile was enjoying a Sunday afternoon nap when he was rudely awakened by a heavy thump on his chest. Upon checking this disturbance he saw a garter snake slithering away towards the door. The next spring they built a log house with a lean-to for the domestic animals.
Eight children were born to this couple. Vasile never lived to see his children grow up. He passed away suddenly during the flu epidemic in 1918 leaving his young widow with a large family.
Two years later Elena married Nicolai Dorish and three more children were born. Nicolai, too, passed away in 1930 and again Elena was widowed. She persevered and with her children continued to farm and brought up all her children to be fine men and women.
From the first marriage there were five sons and three daughters. Mary married Peter Dohei and they had four boys and four girls. George married Katherine Bordian. They have a son James and a daughter Tillie. Dora married Sam Rogoza. They have one daughter. Mertin married jean Serbu. They have one daughter Eleanor and one son Willis. They lost one daughter, Carol, in a car accident. Ted married Mary Balko. They, too, have one son and one daughter.
Susie (Vasilca) married George Hart. They raised one son and two daughters. Nick married Mary Dubitz and they have a son Ron and a daughter Darlene. The youngest of the Romankos, Alex, married Sanda Goroniuk. They have two boys and two girls.
From the second marriage there was John who married Alice Lutic. They have two boys and a girl. Olga married George Bezovie and they have two boys and a girl. The youngest, Alice, married Nick Karpetz and they have two boys and a girl.
Of the many pioneer families at Boian, this is the only one where all the children are still living. The Romankos have all reached the golden age – the oldest is eighty and the youngest sixty-eight.
Elena spent the last few years of her life in Edmonton where she enjoyed all the comforts of city life. In 1956 she passed away at the age of sixty-eight. She was buried at Boian.

Birth and marriage records from church books. Boian, Bukovina

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