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Son of man killed in Leduc workplace accident shares grief: ‘Things they don’t tell you when your parent dies’




There are few things more difficult, both emotionally and practically, than dealing with the death of a parent. But a young Edmonton man is sharing his grief and frustration in a series of raw, honest tweets.

Daryn Bondarchuk was one of the men killed in a workplace accident at Millennium Cryogenic Technologies, an industrial company in the Leduc Business Park on Nov. 15.

READ MORE: ‘Tight-knit community’ of Leduc reeling after 3 die in workplace incident

The 52-year-old was a father of three. His son Cody described him as a handyman.

“He was just very much a fixer with a lot of different things,” Cody told Global News on Thursday. “He had little bits of knowledge in all kinds of industries. We never bought bookshelves for our rooms when we were kids –electrical work, woodworking, plumbing — anything else that we needed to do.

“I think that shows who he was, above everything else. [He] was someone who said, ‘If you had a skill, it’s your responsibility to help others with it.’”

Cody said his dad worked at Millennium Cryogenic Technologies for about two years, after a long friendship with the company’s owner, Russell MacKay. He said he believes his dad worked on machinery at the shop.

Cody said he received a call from an RCMP officer one week ago, explaining that his dad had died.

“It’s just been such a strange blur,” he said. “All the cliches that people say when someone passes — I always just rolled my eyes at them, but now, I really believe them.

“Even though it sounds corny — it is very shocking. You don’t know if it’s real. You just feel kind of trapped in time.”

The last time he saw his father, Daryn was dropping off some food.

“He would always bring over food, at least one a month. He’d call me up and say, ‘Hey I have smoked cheese or ribs or something.’”

Not knowing what happened to his father has been frustrating at times, according to Cody, but he says he knows his dad took safety seriously.

“He was someone who always payed a lot of attention to safety standards, so that’s really what makes me feel a bit more confident that it was just such a fluke. It couldn’t have happened any other way,” he said.

“He’s a very careful person.”

View photos of Daryn Bondarchuk in the gallery below:

The day after his father’s death, Cody took to Twitter, sharing his heartwrenching thoughts and experiences: the sheer physical exhaustion of mourning, the frustration of trying to get practical matters in order and the unexpected little things that prompt a fresh wave of grief.

READ MORE: Building up resilience to grief helps prepare for life’s losses, says author

As of Thursday morning, the essay stretched across 37 tweets, whose text is listed below.

Things They Don’t Tell You When Your Parent Dies Suddenly, a Thread:

1. A lot of the first few days is just a lot of driving. To different family members’ houses, to an airport, to the house you’re going to have to start cleaning out.

2. Grief and sadness is physically and mentally EXHAUSTING. I would give anything for just a few hours of not having to feel it to get a break and prepare for the next wave of grief.

3. You have to relive the moment you found out every time you phone someone else to tell them, even if it’s your parent’s landlord, insurance broker, etc.

4. I’m just so sad.

5. You don’t realize you’re hungry until it’s hours past the time you normally eat and you’re suddenly starving, but even then, you buy food and can’t finish it.

6. You see a photo of your dad from when he was your current age and he’s holding you as a baby and you realize how you really thought there was a lot more time to build new memories and have new adventures.

7. You alternate between feeling guilty that you’re just sitting around and feeling guilty that you’re doing things and not sitting around.

8. Your eyes are sore from crying but you still can’t stop. You want to sleep but can’t fall asleep.

9. You get some downtime to process things on your own but just spiral into memories and what-ifs and loneliness.

10. Nothing you had planned for the weekend happens or matters.

11. He doesn’t have Facebook because he’s your dad, so you start to worry that you won’t have any recent photos of him. But then you get access to his phone and computer and find photos you’ve never seen, where he looks so happy and alive.

Daryn Bondarchuk was one of the men killed in a workplace accident at Millennium Cryogenic Technologies, an industrial company in the Leduc Business Park on Nov. 15. (Supplied by family)

12. You then realize that he, and everyone else in the world, never plans for someone to root through their phone without them there.

13. Everyone in the family just wanders around like zombies from place to place and no one else minds. You constantly police your own behaviour and emotional displays for the first few hours and then you completely let go and don’t care about how anyone sees you.

14. You start to hear about everyone who was better off for knowing your dad. All the people he coached, worked with, helped out, and showed kindness to.

15. And then you realize that to you he was Dad, but he had other names: brother, uncle, son, partner, friend. And the community that is grieving gets a bit bigger.

16. You see your Christmas tree from the corner of your eye and remember that you’re only six weeks until Christmas and it’s going to be such a bad one.

17. Even in the saddest moments of looking through photos, you still can’t help but think about how much he looked like Mac DeMarco when he was younger, and it’s kind of weird.

Daryn Bondarchuk was one of the men killed in a workplace accident at Millennium Cryogenic Technologies, an industrial company in the Leduc Business Park on Nov. 15. (Supplied by family)

18. You hear from people you haven’t talked to in years, and almost feel bad that THEY are wishing YOU condolences because they also knew my dad and have their own right to feel grief too.

19. You scroll to your most recent non-death post from yesterday and are shocked at how far away it seems. Time moves so slowly.

20. You start looking into paperwork for death certificates and bank accounts and get immediately frustrated, put it to the side until you’re ready for the headache it will bring.

21. You realize that because he died at work, you also have to deal with WCB, which just feels like extra punishment.

22. Every cliche you hear about sudden deaths comes true. You always think you have more time. You question that last encounter, those calls you chose to miss, what you wanted to say that you never can now.

23. You stand at Arrivals in the airport with everyone waiting for a family member and when he gets in you feel a bit more unified as a family but there is still something missing that will never come back.

24. Even though it’s past 2 a.m., you’ll still be a while from being able to sleep, and it won’t be for more than a few hours.

25. You start to catch yourself unconsciously using past tense to refer to him, and it makes you sad that your brain understood so quickly that he isn’t coming back.

26. Trying to figure out the code to their safe is really, really frustrating.

27. You meet friends of friends of your parent, people you haven’t seen since you were a baby (it at all), and they show you so much love and kindness and tell you how much you look like them.

28. You spend an evening with your siblings and their partners and for the first time in two days you start talking about things other than your parent’s death. Video games, friends, current events, etc. You start to feel the massive hole in your heart stitch up just a little bit.

29. I don’t know how long this lasts for, but the last two days have felt like that episode of BoJack Horseman that’s completely underwater. It’s surreal.

30. You feel guilty taking food from your parent’s fridge home to eat even though you know that’s an irrational feeling because it needs to be cleaned out somehow and why throw it out?

31. It’s the first business day after, so you are able to start filing paperwork. Some staff are very patient and understanding that you don’t know which documents to ask for, but many are not.

32. You pick up his truck to drive back into the city, and you didn’t realize how viscerally the smell of his clothes and stuff in the truck would hit you.

33. Paperwork is exhausting. Bureaucracy is exhausting. I feel like I worked two eight-hour shifts today.

34. You spent the last five days constantly phoning different people at all hours so when you finally check up on your phone plan use, you see more than $60 in overage charges because you didn’t even think about how not having unlimited calls would matter this week.

35. You text Telus to change your plan to unlimited, accidentally tell the employee that your dad passed away because that’s how you’ve started every interaction with a company this week and it’s habit, and now you feel deeply embarrassed. The employee is very nice about it.

36. You finish the fruit you grabbed from his fridge. You throw the tupperware in the sink and make a mental note to wash it so you can return it to Dad. Then you remember. Then you cry.

37. You’re getting dressed in the morning to see him one last time before he is cremated, but you’re scared because you don’t know if you’ll be able to let him go.

Cody said he’s going to remember his dad for his belief in hard work.

“He always cared about the effort you put in, more than the output. He would always look at the comments in a report card more than the grade itself… That’s something that I thought about a lot in the last week. Again, it’s really corny but if you always just try your best — then results will come. Knowing that you gave it your all is something I think he wanted to pass down and that I want to live by now.”

–With files from Global News’ Sarah Kraus

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


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Nostalgia and much more with Starburst XXXtreme




Get a taste of adventure with Starburst XXXtreme based on the legendary NetEnt Game. The nostalgic themes are sure to capture fans of the classic version as they get treated to higher intensity, better visuals, and features. The most significant element of the game is its volatility. Patience will not be an essential virtue considering the insane gameplay, and there is a lot of win potential involved. It retains the original makeup of the previous game while adding a healthy dose of adrenaline. 

Starburst Visuals and Symbols

The game is definitely more conspicuous than before. The setting happens over a 5-reel, 3-row game grid with nine fixed win lines, which function if a succession from the left to the right reel is present. Only those players that that attain the highest win per bet line are paid. From a visual standpoint, the Starburst XXXtreme slots illustrates lightning effects behind the reels, which is not surprising as it is inherited from the original version. Available themes include Classic, Jewels, and Space. The game is also available in both desktop and mobile versions, which is advantageous for players considering the global pandemic. According to Techguide, American gamers are increasingly having more engaging gaming experiences to socialize to fill the gap of in-person interaction. Starburst XXXtreme allows them to fill the social void at a time when there is so much time to be had indoors. 

Starburst XXXTreme Features

Players get to alternate on three features which are Starburst Wilds, XXXtreme Spins, and Random Wilds. The first appears on reels 2,3, or 4. When these land, they expand to cover all positions while also calculating the wins. They are also locked for a respin. If a new one hits, it also becomes locked while awarding another respin. Starburst XXXtreme offers a choice between two scenarios for a higher stake. In one scenario with a ten times stake, the Starburst Wild is set on random on reels 2,3, or 4, and a multiplier starts the respin. The second scenario, which has a 95 times stake, starts with two guaranteed starburst wilds on reels 2,3, or 4. it also plays out using respin game sequence and features. The game also increases the potential with the Random Wilds feature to add Starburst Wilds to a vacant reel at the end of a spin. Every Starburst Wild gives a random multiplier with potential wins of x2, x3, x5, x10, x25, x50, x100, or even x150.

The new feature is sure to be a big hit with the gaming market as online gambling has shown significant growth during the lockdown. AdAge indicates the current casino customer base is an estimated one in five Americans, so Starburst XXXtreme’s additional features will achieve considerable popularity. 

What We Think About The Game

The gambling market has continued to diversify post-pandemic, so it is one of the most opportune times to release an online casino-based game. Thankfully Starburst XXXtreme features eye-catching visuals, including the jewels and space themes. These attract audience participation and make the gameplay inviting. The game also has a nostalgic edge. The previous NetEnt iteration featured similar visuals and gameplay, so the audience has some familiarity with it. The producers have revamped this version by tweaking the features to improve the volatility and engagement. 

That is characterized by the potential win cap of 200,000 times the bet. Starburst XXXtreme does not just give betting alternatives for players that want to go big. The increase of multipliers also provides a great experience. If the respins in the previous version were great, knowing that multipliers can go hundreds of times overtakes the game to a new level. 

Players should get excited about this offering. All of the features can be triggered within a single spin. Whether one plays the standard game or takes the XXXtreme spin route, it is possible to activate all of the features. Of course, the potential 200,000 times potential is a huge carrot. However, the bet size is probably going to be restricted and vary depending on the casino. It is also worth pointing out that a malfunction during the gameplay will void all of the payouts and progress. Overall, the game itself has been designed to provide a capped win of 200,000 times the original bet. 

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‘We’re back’: Montreal festival promoters happy to return but looking to next year




In downtown Montreal, it’s festival season.

In the city’s entertainment district, a musical act was conducting a sound check on stage Friday evening — the second day of the French-language version of the renowned Just For Laughs comedy festival. Tickets for many of the festival’s free outdoor shows — limited by COVID-19 regulations — were sold out.

Two blocks away, more than 100 people were watching an acoustic performance by the Isaac Neto Trio — part of the last weekend of the Festival International Nuits d’Afrique, a celebration of music from the African continent and the African diaspora.

With COVID-19 restrictions continuing to limit capacity, festival organizers say they’re glad to be back but looking forward to next year when they hope border restrictions and capacity limits won’t affect their plans.

Charles Décarie, Just For Laughs’ CEO and president, said this is a “transition year.”

“Even though we have major constraints from the public health group in Montreal, we’ve managed to design a festival that can navigate through those constraints,” Décarie said.

The French-language Juste pour rire festival began on July 15 and is followed by the English-language festival until July 31.

When planning began in February and March, Décarie said, organizers came up with a variety of scenarios for different crowd sizes, ranging from no spectators to 50 per cent of usual capacity.

“You’ve got to build scenarios,” he said. “You do have to plan a little bit more than usual because you have to have alternatives.”

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MELS new major movie studio to be built in Montreal




MONTREAL — MELS Studios will build a new film studio in Montreal, filling some of the gap in supply to meet the demand of Hollywood productions.

MELS president Martin Carrier said on Friday that MELS 4 studio construction will begin « as soon as possible », either in the fall or winter of next year. The studio could host productions as early as spring 2023.

The total investment for the project is $76 million, with the Quebec government contributing a $25 million loan. The project will create 110 jobs, according to the company.

The TVA Group subsidiary’s project will enable it to stand out « even more » internationally, according to Quebecor president and CEO Pierre Karl Péladeau. In the past, MELS Studios has hosted several major productions, including chapters of the X-Men franchise. The next Transformers movie is shooting this summer in Montreal.

Péladeau insisted that local cultural productions would also benefit from the new facility, adding that the studio ensures foreign revenues and to showcase talent and maintain an industry of Quebec producers.


The film industry is cramped in Montreal.

According to a report published last May by the Bureau du cinéma et de la télévision du Québec (BCTQ), there is a shortage of nearly 400,000 square feet of studio space.

With the addition of MELS 4, which will be 160,000 square feet, the company is filling part of the gap.

Carrier admitted that he has had to turn down contracts because of the lack of space, representing missed opportunities of « tens of millions of dollars, not only for MELS, but also for the Quebec economy. »

« Montreal’s expertise is in high demand, » said Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante, who was present at the announcement.

She said she received great testimonials from « Netflix, Disney, HBO and company » during an economic mission to Los Angeles in 2019.

« What stands out is that they love Montreal because of its expertise, knowledge and beauty. We need more space, like MELS 4, » she said.

There is still not enough capacity in Quebec, acknowledged Minister of Finance, the Economy and Innovation Eric Girard.

« It is certain that the government is concerned about fairness and balance, so if other requests come in, we will study them with the same seriousness as we have studied this one, » he said.

Grandé Studios is the second-largest player in the industry. Last May, the company said it had expansion plans that should begin in 2022. Investissement Québec and Bell are minority shareholders in the company.

For its part, MELS will have 400,000 square feet of production space once MELS 4 is completed. The company employs 450 people in Quebec and offers a range of services including studio and equipment rentals, image and sound postproduction, visual effects and a virtual production platform.

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