Memorial Guestbook


Wake and funeral

Chinese New Year

A Celebration of a Life

A Birthday Tribute, May 21, 2003

Wish Academy Graduation/Award, June 14, 2003



Thank you to my dear friends for this precious gift commemorating the first anniversary of dad's death.  Thank you, Linda, Tammy, Jean, Mitz, Lynne, Peggy, Patti and Laurel.


Donald Emil Kanabay
(Fr. Valerian Kanabaj)
May 21, 1932 - January 19, 2003


Donald Emil “Fr. Valerian Kanabaj,” Kanabay, 70, of St. Petersburg, died Sunday (Jan. 19, 2003) at St. Anthony’s Hospital.  

He came here in 1970 from his native Chicago, IL.  He served in the U.S. Army 101st Airborne Division during the Korean War. After attending Stenotype Institute of Chicago, he founded, with his wife, Kanabay and Kanabay Court Reporters, and in 1967 won the Illinois speed championship.  

After publishing two books he moved his family to Palma de Mallorca, Spain, in 1967, where he worked with the U.S. Consulate and ran a USO for the Sixth Fleet in a flamenco nightclub.  

In 1970, in Washington, D.C. he reported top secret Capitol Hill hearings.   

In 1970 Governor Claude Kirk appointed him an Official Court Reporter for the Sixth Judicial Circuit in Florida, and in 1971 Governor Reubin Askew approved his appointment.  

Also known as Father Valerian Kanabaj, he was an Orthodox Catholic priest and a St. Petersburg Police Department Chaplain.     

He is survived by his wife of 46 years, Helen; and four daughters: Sandra Kanabay Ambush; Theresa Simpson; Donna Kanabay Harvey; and Catherine Naghitorabi, all of St. Petersburg; and five grandchildren.  

Those who wish may make contributions in his name to the Pinellas County Law Enforcement Charities, 14450-46th St. N., Suite 115, Clearwater, FL 33762, (727)532-1722.