After losing wife to cancer, Winnipeg man carries on Christmas light tradition for charity
WINNIPEG — For years the Kwiatek family has created a stunning Christmas light display in front of their Transcona home.
Last summer, Peter Kwiatek lost his wife Pam to cancer, and one of her wishes was to collect food donations for Winnipeg Harvest when setting up Christmas lights each year. Peter is hoping to make her wish come true, and on Thursday is kicking off a donation drive for the Winnipeg charity in front of the elaborate light display.
“Back in 2014, when we were setting up for Christmas, Pam became a little ill… and we always discussed about giving back to the community”, Peter said.
“It came up that she wanted to do something with Winnipeg Harvest, and we were going to do it in 2015. Unfortunately she was diagnosed with cancer in January, and I lost her in July.”
WATCH: Christmas light display shines bright
Over the past month Peter and his children have been working hard to decorate the house in honour of Pam – stringing over 30,000 Christmas lights and setting up more than 100 glowing pieces of Santa, reindeer and candy canes.
“After I lost her I wasn’t going to do the Christmas display, but there were a few items she purchased in December before she was diagnosed,” he said. “I came across them and phoned my two daughters and asked if they could help me do it for Pam.”
Peter said the light show is about giving back to the community, calling it a “Christmas card” for everyone to see.
On Thursday from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m., at 503 Kildare Ave. West, Kwiatek will accept non-perishable food items or cash to donate to Winnipeg Harvest in Pam’s name. There will also be hot chocolate available to stay warm.
“I know in my heart she is proud of what I am doing. I feel her presence.”
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