Irene Melnick

Irena Mary Stanko was born Jan 22nd 1962, Toronto, ON. Irene Passed suddenly at the age of 59 Years old Whitby, ON on November 18th, 2021.  


Irene was creative, bold, intelligent, generous and hardworking. She had a passion for travel and exploring the world.  She travelled to over 150 countries and loved experiencing different cultures and trying new activities. She shared her passion for travel with her family, from taking trips with extended family to enjoying trips with each of her sons to expose them to our diverse world and to make unique memories with them. Still, while she loved being abroad, Irene also made her beautiful home a place where family, friends and colleagues could always gather. She was the ultimate hostess as she entertained all with her amazing cooking and was sure to make everybody feel so welcome. She was also the ultimate shopper, and at birthday and holiday celebrations, Irene loved those opportunities to bestow loved ones and friends with unique and custom gifts that they would always treasure.  

Irene’s strong work ethic was truly admirable.  While she earned her Bachelor of Arts, her innate entrepreneurial spirit came through early on. Upon graduating, she worked in the travel and insurance industries. Then, in 1991, she opened up Golden Age Insurance: she worked with major insurance underwriters to create specialized plans for her snowbird clients.  As the insurance agency became more successful, in 2001 she then started her second business.  Irene took her passion for travel and became one of the first female franchise owners of Expedia Cruises, located in Ajax.  She worked diligently, growing her business steadily and then opened another Expedia Cruises Centre in Pickering in 2017. As a fearless, enthusiastic, and supportive leader, she helped her consultants attain success resulting in industry record sales in 2018 and 2019.  In 2021, her flair for design and aesthetics was put towards her latest business, Porthole Art, where she combined her love of exquisite décor with the beautiful sights she visited. Undoubtedly, Irene was a visionary and a driving force in any business she was a part of. 

Irene leaves behind her beloved family, Daughter of Mary Stanko and late Bob Stanko, Husband Joel, Sons Jason (Maddalena) and Stephen (Laura), sisters Debbie and Michele (James), brother-in-laws Jeff  (Wendy) and Tom (Robin), nephews Kyan and Kaleb, niece Lauryn, and granddaughter Liliana. She inspired and taught us how to live life to the fullest and never give up on pursuing our dreams. The lessons she taught us and the legacy she left behind will guide us each day.  


Visitation will be held at the DeStefano Funeral Home 1289 Keith Ross Drive in Oshawa (905) 440 3595 on Friday November 26th from 2:00pm - 4:00pm and 6:00pm - 9:00pm.   A Funeral Service will be held in the Chapel on Saturday November 27th at 11:00am.   Interment at Duffin Meadows in Pickering will follow.  If desired, memorial donations to the Eastview Boys and Girls Club in Oshawa would be appreciated.

For those that were unable to attend the Visitation, we invite you to CLICK HERE to see the Livestream

For those that were unable to attend the Funeral Service in person, we invite you to CLICK HERE to view the Livestream.