Robert Paul Sanyshyn, 64, was received into the arms of the Lord on Thursday, December 24, 2020, at Lourdes Hospital in Binghamton, after a brief but courageous battle with cancer. He was born on December 20, 1956 in Jersey City, New Jersey, where he spent most of his childhood. He is pre-deceased by his parents, Frank and Theresa Sanyshyn and his brother-in-law, Thomas Zidiak. He is survived by the love of his life, his devoted wife, Irene (Czebiniak) Sanyshyn; his sister Barbara Zidiak; brother Frank Jr. and his wife Patricia; brother William and his wife Nancy. He is also survived by his aunt, Mrs. Eva (Sanyshyn) Czebiniak, his mother-in-law, Mrs. Geraldine Czebiniak; in-laws Martha and Michael Tomsey, Natalie and Victor Czumak, Eugene Czebiniak; nieces and nephews Frank Sanyshyn III and his wife Marie, John and Lisa Zidiak, Mark and Mary Ellen Zidiak, Jennifer Sanyshyn, Kimberly Sanyshyn, Daniel Tomsey, David Tomsey, Jillian Tomsey, Larissa and Matthew Rabarsky, Stephen Czumak; long time family friend, Peter Sicilian; several great nieces and nephews, plus many cousins and extended family and friends. After working for Nabisco in various locations across the country for many years, Robert decided to take an early retirement and relocate to his parents’ country property in Newark Valley, a beloved childhood summer vacation spot, where he knew in his heart he would someday return to live. Robert was completely devoted to Irene. While they didn’t meet until later in their lives, they were both so grateful to have finally found their soulmate in each other. While so much shorter than they would have hoped, both Robert and Irene were so thankful for the precious time they shared together. For the rest of his family and for his friends, there are many effusive words that could be used to describe Robert, but two things about him rise to the top -- his unfailing generosity and his humor. Always ready and willing to lend a hand and help out in any way he could, often without even being asked, whether it was mowing the lawn at his mother-in-law’s house or transporting heavy scenery pieces for a local theatre company. His dedication to weekly Friday Ukrainian dinner sales at his home parish, Sacred Heart Ukrainian Catholic Church in Johnson City, was tireless – each week helping to prepare the food, cook the food, and even sell the food on Fridays. And even as he gave selflessly of his time and energy, he did so cheerfully and with an unmatched sense of humor. When you entered the room, you were greeted with a jovial “hey, hey!” and you instantly felt welcomed. He loved to tease people. And while it could be relentless, it was always good-hearted. If he chose you to pick on, you knew he liked you even more. While Robert enjoyed participating in many activities, including fishing, hunting, home improvement projects with his cousin David, weekend trips to Lancaster with Irene, singing in the church choir and a family vocal ensemble, probably his greatest passion was gardening. On their sprawling and beautiful Newark Valley property, he annually planted his substantial vegetable and fruit gardens, where he seemed to grow everything from tomatoes and zucchini to blueberries and grapes and more. He loved to see things grow. Even more, he loved to share the bounty of his garden with family and friends, going so far as to load up his trunk with vegetables and transport them to church on Sunday, encouraging everyone who wanted to fill up bags with veggies to enjoy at home. Robert’s generosity also extended to his favorite pets of family and friends, dogs Oreo, Milo, Oskar, and Barnaby to whom he, without fail, provided snacks and treats whenever he saw them. And lastly, he was an undying fan of the Jets and the Mets. You can’t be more generous than that. Or humorous. Robert’s wife and family would like to acknowledge and convey special thanks to Dr. Nick Liu, Stephen Czumak, FNP-C and the staff of Upstate Urology of UHS, and Dr. Joseph A. Readling and the staff of Broome Oncology for their compassionate care for Robert during his illness, and to the staff of Saint James School for their thoughtfulness. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, a private funeral service will be held for immediate family only. A memorial service will be planned sometime in the future when restrictions are eased and all who wish to can attend. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Sacred Heart Ukrainian Catholic Church Building Fund or the American Cancer Society.
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