∼April 9, 1926 – April 20, 2017∼
Milomir Jovanovic passed away on April 20 at the Sault Area Hospital, peacefully, with his only daughter, Jasmina, by his side.
Milomir was born in a small village (Ravno Bucje) in the mountains of Eastern Serbia on April 9, 1926. He had one brother, Dragoljub, two years his senior. He was a very intelligent child who completed two grades per year and caught up with his older brother in school, so that, after 4 years of attending a particular school in their village, they moved away to the nearby city of Knjazevac to continue with their education, the two of them enrolled in the same class. They had to stop attending school and move back home when the Second World War broke out. During the war their house was burned down and the family got separated. Milomir joined the Serbian armed forces to fight against the axis powers in 1944. Miraculously, and with God’s help, the entire family survived the horrors of war and was reunited but never returned to their village.
After the war was over, Milomir continued with his education, graduated high school, and attended the University of Belgrade, where he graduated in January 1953 with a degree as an Engineer of Agriculture. He immediately got his first job at the Research Institute for Grapevine and Fruit in a historic town of Sremski Karlovci in Northern Serbia. This is where he met his future wife of almost 60 years, Angelina.
He started doing research for his PhD shortly after and went to France for 10 months, temporarily leaving his young family, his wife and young child behind. He spent time in three so-called vine regions of France – in Alsace, along with other locations in the south of France. He successfully defended his PhD thesis, titled “Bortytis Cinerea Pers. as a Parasite of Grapevine and Prevention Possibilities,” on June 29, 1962 at the University of Belgrade.
Afterward he became the Executive Director of the Institute and held this position for several years. After the merger of the Institute with the nearby University of Novi Sad he transferred to the University where he continued to do research in the development and use of fungicides and pesticides for protection of grapevine from fungal diseases. He collaborated with large European companies in Holland and Germany. During his career, Milomir attended numerous scientific conferences throughout Europe, and gave presentations at many of these. Milomir is a recipient of the Order of Federative Republic of Yugoslavia with Silver Star honors, along with several awards for his contribution to the natural sciences from the University of Novi Sad.
After his retirement Milomir and Angelina moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, in 1994, to be closer to their daughter and beloved grandson, Vlad. This was a new chapter for both of them. They met new friends from the former Yugoslavia and around the world. Milomir had a very creative mind, and he could not stop theorizing, even in retirement continuing to work on small home-run experiments trying to develop a hearty grapevine species which would be able to produce grapes usable for wine-making in the harsh Canadian climate. Some of this work he moved to the Sault with him. He manufactured home-made wine for family and friends in retirement, in addition to theoretical work. Milomir and Angelina spent their summers in their beloved cottage which Milomir built on the coast of the Adriatic Sea, until 2011 when they visited for the last time.
In 2011 Milomir and Angelina moved to Sault Ste. Marie with their daughter who accepted a position of the Executive Director at the Art Gallery of Algoma. In 2012 Milomir suddenly lost his wife Angelina which was a huge loss for him. The last year and a half Milomir lived at the Davey Home. We would like to thank the staff of Birtch Lane 1 for their care and assistance.
Milomir was a very kind and gentle person who was devoted to his family. Despite his drive and determination which resulted in a successful career his family was always his top priority. His life philosophy was to stay connected to nature and follow lows of nature. He was a very wise man who always said that he did not have enough time to pay attention to wrong doings of others towards him. His moto was to look forward and follow your dreams. He believed in nature and God taking care of other things. He was calm and quiet person but had unbelievable willingness to live, great sense of humor and endless joy for life until his last hours. He is going to be terribly missed by his daughter Jasmina and grandson Vladimir who is named after his father, as well as relatives in Europe and friends in Winnipeg, in Ontario, and other parts of Canada.
We would like to thank especially Zoran and Dragana Vitic for their care, love and support during the last few weeks of Milomir’s life. They went through this difficult time with us giving us enormous support.
We would also like to express our gratitude to friends in Sault Ste. Marie who were very supportive at the end of Milomir’s life.
Our deepest gratitude goes to the doctors, nurses and staff at the Sault Area Hospital for their expertise, care and dedication to help Milomir on many occasions.
Reception to celebrate Milomir’s life will be held at the Art Gallery of Algoma on Wednesday, April 26, 2017 from 4 pm – 7 pm.
Donations may be made to Art Gallery of Algoma – Dr. Milomir Jovanovic Memorial Fund.
Milomir will live in the hearts of Jasmina and Vladimir forever. We love you Tata and Dejka and we can only aspire to be as good in every way as you have always been.
Arrangements entrusted to the Arthur Funeral Home & Cremation Centre, 705-759-2522. Expressions of sympathy may be offered at www.arthurfuneralhome.com