Bosy, Volodymyr

Image - Volodymyr Bosy

Bosy, Volodymyr [Bosyj] (Bossy, Walter), b 21 May 1899 in Yasel, Sianik county, Galicia, d 3 January 1979 in Montreal, Quebec. (Photo: Volodymyr Bosy.) Community leader. A veteran of the First World War and the Ukrainian Struggle for Independence (1917–20), he taught for several years and studied philosophy at the Catholic University in Lublin. After a Ukrainian Military Organization plan for him to assassinate the Polish police commissioner of Lviv unraveled because of an intelligence leak, Bosy quickly left for Canada in the spring of 1924. He immediately began organizing Sich societies in southern Ontario. In September 1924, Bosy became an adherent of the Hetmanite movement after spending time with Osyp Nazaruk in Detroit. Accordingly, he became instrumental in developing the Canadian Sitch Association as a Hetmanite group. In the summer of 1925, Bosy obtained a teaching position at a Ukrainian Catholic secondary school in Yorkton, from where he toured the surrounding districts extensively and established new Sich branches. In November 1926 Bosy, at the invitation of Bishop Nykyta Budka, began to edit the Catholic newspaper Kanadiis’kyi ukraïnets’ in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He was dismissed from this position in December 1927 after control of the paper passed into private hands. In an ensuing fight with the new owners, Bosy’s reputation was severely tarnished (notwithstanding the fact that he launched a successful libel suit against them). In 1931, Bosy moved to Montreal, where he was able to find employment with the English Catholic School system. He resigned from his national positions with the Hetmanite movement, although he remain active in it locally. He also campaigned on behalf of the education and rights of Canadians of non-French and non-Anglo-Celtic origins in Quebec in addition to striving to incorporate them into conservative Catholic coalitions. In 1950 Bosy organized and then headed the Lypynsky Ukrainian Scientific Institute (Ukrainskyi naukovyi instytut im. Lypynskoho). In 1951 he published a study (in Ukrainian) of Viacheslav Lypynsky. The biographical Volodymyr Bosyi: 40 rokiv na fronti ukraïns’koï spravy, 1914–1954 (Volodymyr Bosy: 40 Years at the Front for the Ukrainian Cause, 1914–1954), compiled by Yuliian Tarnovych, appeared in 1954. Bosy’s papers are housed in Ottawa at Library and Archives Canada.

[This article was updated in 2007.]

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