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Beloved channel leader Greg Milkovich passes

Greg Milkovich

Nothing seemed to get Greg Milkovich down. It did not matter that while at NEC Canada he battled U.S. executives in a no-win situation to keep channel sales alive in Canada.

He equally faced challenges at Samsung Canada during the margin squeeze. And, he also took on the enormous challenge of establishing Belkin, an accessories manufacturer, in Canada about a decade ago when no one thought it could be successful.

And, Milkovich did all this with a great smile and total optimism. It is with great sadness that CDN reports the passing of Milkovich at the young age of 49 to brain cancer. Bradley Hutchinson, the channel chief at Belkin Canada, said his friend and boss Milkovich was surrounded by his family last night (wife Rebecca and daughters Sarah and Katie along with his brother John).

“Greg fought the brain cancer with the most positive attitude I have ever seen. Not surprising considering he was a supreme optimist. I am sure we will all miss big smile and warm heart,” Hutchinson said.

He will be sorely missed in the Canadian channel. Over the last few years, Milkovich battled stage IV brain cancer with total optimism and great class.

Jim Mandala, the vice president of  International sales and GM of Globalstar Canada, contacted CDN via LinkedIn to say this about Milkovich: “I worked with Greg at Samsung and became his friend and biggest fan. A wonderful and caring guy who really put his people ahead of himself. He will be missed.”

Matt Whelan said on Twitter: “Incredibly tough day for the Belkin Linksys team in Canada as we lost a great friend.”

Frank Squizzato, president of UpMarket, said that Greg touched many.

Greg Milkovich with Tech Data's Rick Reid and Ron Hulse of Samsung at Tech Select event in 2008.

Greg Milkovich with Tech Data’s Rick Reid and Ron Hulse of Samsung at Tech Select event in 2008.

He will be remembered in the channel for the same optimism he showed for his health.

The channel can pay their respects to Greg at the Kopriva Taylor Community Funeral Home in Oakville, Ont. (Address 64 Lakeshore Road West) on March 4, 2015 from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. Mass celebrating Greg’s life will take place on March 5 at St. James Roman Catholic Church also in Oakville (Address 231 Morden Road).

Donations in Greg’s name can be made to Gerry & Nancy Pencer Brain Tumour Centre at Princess Margaret Hospital, Ian Anderson House or the American Brain Tumor Association.

Milkovich was interviewed several times by CDN. Here are a few of these stories he was quoted in.