Obituaries March 16

March 15, 2013

Nellie A. Brandt Antanovich

Longtime Century Inn employee

Nellie A. Brandt Antanovich, 84, of Washington (North Bethlehem Township), formerly of Cokeburg, died Thursday, March 14, 2013, in her home.

She was born September 30, 1928, in Ellsworth, a daughter of the late Leslie and Sophie Smaroff Brandt.

Mrs. Antanovich was a 1948 graduate of Ellsworth High School.

She was a waitress and a hostess for the Century Inn with more than 32 years of service until her retirement in 1983.

For more than 30 years, Mrs. Antanovich was a member of Emanuel United Presbyterian Church, Eighty Four.

She enjoyed spending time with her family and grandchildren, gardening and working outdoors.

Surviving are two sons, John L. Antanovich (Loretta) of Scenery Hill and Thomas W. Antanovich (Michelle) of Fredericktown; three grandchildren, Matthew, Jason and Traci Antanovich; a great-grandson, Calen John Antanovich; three stepgrandchildren, James and Christina Lukas and Christopher Miller; a brother, Earl Brandt (Pat) of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio; a brother-in-law, Alex Antanovich of Scenery Hill; a close friend, Bona Cross of Washington; and several nieces and nephews.

Deceased is her husband, John Antanovich, who died June 13, 2011.

Deceased, in addition to her parents and husband, are a son, Gary Lee Antanovich, who died October 22, 1980, and three brothers, Bill, Jack and Ed Brant.

Friends will be received from 1 to 7 p.m. Sunday in Greenlee Funeral Home, 619 Main Street, Bentleyville, where services will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, March 18, with the Rev. Don Herschel officiating. Interment will be in Scenery Hill Cemetery. A guest book and personal condolences may be accessed at

Gertrude A. Buck

Member of Lower Buffalo Presbyterian Church

Mary Gertrude Adams Buck, 91, of Spokane, Wash., formerly of Avella, passed away Wednesday, March 13, 2013, in Sacred Heart Hospital, Spokane.

She was born January 2, 1922, in Independence Township, the eldest of seven daughters of the late John A. and Mary Cunningham Adams.

Mrs. Buck was a graduate of Avella High School and Penn Commercial College.

She was employed by the Hazel-Atlas Glass plant in Washington.

Mrs. Buck married her late husband of 61 years, H. Roy Buck Jr., August 25, 1945. They resided and operated a family farm in the Avella area until her husband’s death in 2006, when she moved to Spokane.

She was a member of Lower Buffalo Presbyterian Church of Independence, where she served as treasurer, trustee and Sunday school teacher for 40 years. She was a 7th-degree member of the Independence Grange and an active member of the West Middletown Garden Club. She also served many years as judge of elections in Independence Township.

Surviving are two sons, Roy and wife Marge of Spokane and John and wife Barbara of Phoenix, Ariz.; four grandchildren, Thomas and wife Maria, Mary Jin, Aaron and Alicia; six great-grandchildren, Faith, Hannah, Peter, Gregory, Anthony and Catherine; four sisters, Madeline Sickles, Janet Kepka, Harriett Paterson and Lela Roadman; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Deceased, in addition to her husband and parents, are two sisters, Olive Buck and Elaine Porter.

Friends and family will be received from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Monday in Jerome A. Stefkovich Funeral Home Inc., 18 Campbell Street, Avella. Additional visitation will be held from 10 until the time of services at 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 19, in Lower Buffalo Presbyterian Church, Independence, with Pastor Fred McCloskey officiating. Burial will be in Independence Cemetery, Avella.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, 322 Eighth Avenue, 7th floor, New York, NY 10001.

Gene Danch

Gene Danch, 80, of Cuddy, South Fayette, died Wednesday, March 13, 2013.

Visitation will be from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday in Coleman-Taylor Funeral Services, Cecil, 724-745-9510.

A complete obituary will appear in a later edition.

Thelma Johns Dezelan

Member of Immaculate Conception Parish

Thelma Johns Dezelan, 83, of Washington, died Thursday, March 14, 2013, in Donnell House, Washington, after a brief illness.

She was born April 8, 1929, a daughter of the late Michael and Hesiaba Johns.

Mrs. Dezelan was a lifelong member of Immaculate Conception Parish and loved to cook for family and friends.

She was a graduate of Washington High School and a former employee of Bell Telephone Co.

Surviving are daughters Barbara (Blake) McCandless and Cindy (Dr. Craig) Fox, both of Washington, and Sandra (Dr. Mickey) Dezelan-Axelband of Delray Beach, Fla.; grandchildren Brock McCandless of Pittsburgh, Christina (Michael) Grasso of North Strabane and Brittany McCandless of New York City, N.Y.; several nieces and nephews; and a host of “adopted” children and families over the years.

On May 22, 1954, she married John F. Dezelan, who died December 9, 1995.

Also deceased are a sister, Emma Johns, and brothers Hannah, Alfred and William Johns.

Her friends and neighbors contributed many acts of kindness over the years and were always appreciated.

Friends will be received from 2 to 4 and 6 to 9 p.m. Sunday in Warco-Falvo Funeral Home Inc., Wilson at East Katherine avenues, Washington, S. Timothy Warco, supervisor/director, Susan Falvo Warco, director, S. Timothy Warco II, director. A prayer service will be held at 9 a.m. Monday, March 18, in the funeral home, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 10 a.m. in Immaculate Conception Church, Washington. Burial will follow in Forest Lawn Gardens, McMurray. In honor of her life, memorial contributions may be directed to Dezzy’s Second Chance Animal Rescue Inc., 1018 Bauhinia Road, Delray Beach, Florida 33483, or St. Jude Children’s Hospital. Condolences may be expressed at

Betty J. Emerick

Enjoyed bowling and baking

Betty J. Emerick, 84, of Cecil Township, died Friday, March 15, 2013, in Golden Living Center, North Strabane Township.

She was born February 5, 1929, at Boyce Station, a daughter of the late Robert C. and Evelyn E. Reed Green.

Mrs. Emerick was a member of Venice Presbyterian Church, former member of Fawcett United Methodist Church and past member of Upper St. Clair Grange.

She enjoyed bowling with the Sore Spots Bowling team, baking and sewing and was an award-winning singer with the Grange. She loved cutting grass and spending time with her grandchildren.

She worked as a decorator for Patti Petite Cookies in Bridgeville.

Surviving are a son, James R. (Gina) Emerick, and a daughter, Sylvia (Craig) Wallace, both of Cecil Township; a grandson, Ian Wallace of Cecil Township; a granddaughter, Lauretta (Caleb) Duncan of Marengo, Ohio; two sisters-in-law, Lauretta Green of Lone Pine and Jean Howard of Peters Township; and a brother-in-law, Alvie (Eleanor) Emerick of Peters Township.

Deceased are her husband, Donald J. Emerick, in 1983; two brothers, Donald R. and Lawrence E. Green; and a sister, Sylvia Volosky.

Friends will be received from noon to 3 and 6 to 8 p.m. Sunday in Coleman-Taylor Funeral Services, 3378 Millers Run Road (Route 50), Cecil, where services will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, March 18, with Pastor Fred Soberg officiating.

Interment will be in Jefferson Memorial Park, Pleasant Hills.

Contributions may be made to Venice Presbyterian Church, 3694 Millers Run Road, McDonald, PA 15057.

John R. Hlipala Jr.

U.S. Army veteran

John R. “Sonny” Hlipala Jr. went home to be with his savior September 30, 2012, in his home in Kiowa, Colo., two months after being diagnosed with cancer.

He was born June 24, 1942, in Waynesburg, a son of the late John and Mary Zimmerman Hlipala.

In December 1963, he was honorably discharged from the U.S. Army serving as staff sergeant of the Armored Division in Germany.

On March 6, 1982, he married Julie Kliest of Evergreen, Colo. They made their home in Kiowa, where they raised Hereford and Morgan horses.

He loved his tractor and enjoyed the day cruising on it the day before he passed away.

Deceased, in addition to his parents, are a sister, Kathy of Idaho, in 2010; brothers Jimmy of Pennsylvania and Billy of Colorado, in 2011; a niece, Tony Lynn of Ohio; and a sister, Sandy of Idaho and Arizona, 27 days after him, of cancer.

Surviving are his wife, Julie, at their ranch; sisters Ellie Turiace-Lund (Richard) of Sun City West, Ariz., Shirley Keefer (Loren) of Newton Falls, Ohio, Juanita Deede (Bob) of Sun City West, Linda Hlipala and Kelly Russell (Jim) of Sandpoint, Idaho; three nieces; and seven nephews.

James L. Holleran Jr.

U.S. Navy veteran, Naval Center retiree

James L. Holleran Jr. passed away Saturday, March 2, 2013, in Kaiser Permanente Hospital, San Diego, Calif.

He was born September 23, 1932, in Canonsburg, a son of the late Ruth E. McKee Holleran and James L. Holleran Sr.

Mr. Holleran graduated from Cecil High School in 1950, after which he enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served aboard the USS Ingersol from 1950 to 1954 as machinist mate. After a discharge from the Navy in January 1954, he attended Penn Technical Institute and Washington & Jefferson College. He then worked for Curtis Wright Corp. as an engineer on flight simulators and other training devices. In 1964, he began his career at the Naval Training and Equipment Center, where he was an electronic technician with a specialty in quality assurance and re-evaluation on flight simulators. Mr. Holleran retired in 1993.

Among his many hobbies were his boat and fishing while in the Florida Keys, flying his own Taylorcraft airplane and his love for computers and electronics. He had multiple book dedications and acknowledgements for his writer assistance in technical fields. He also was proficient in medical knowledge and mechanics.

He leaves behind his partner of 40 years, Richard Stark; a sister, Judy Howell and husband Welling of New Jersey; and several cousins, nieces and nephews.

Deceased, in addition to his parents, are sisters Helen McKeever and Marilyn Kerin; nephew Robert Carey Jr.; and niece Bonnie McCoy.

Mr. Holleran will be missed by a host of friends.

Interment will be in Forest Lawn Gardens Cemetery at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to a favorite charity.

Edward L. Irwin Jr.

U.S. Marine Corps veteran

Edward L. Irwin Jr., 82, of Bethel Park, passed away Thursday, March 14, 2013.

Prior to retiring, he was an insurance agent with Prudential for 38 years and a member of the Prudential Union.

Mr. Irwin was a proud veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, serving during the Korean War.

Deceased are his beloved wife, Wilma Mae (Eger) Irwin and a brother, Jack Irwin.

Surviving are six children, Ed (Cathy) Irwin, John Paul “Jack” Irwin, Roxanne (Bernd) Rothberger, David (Kara) Irwin, Margaret (Chris) Sympson and Edythe “Edy” Irwin; and six grandchildren, Brian, Danielle, Taryn Brown, Bridget, Casey and Sam.

Friends are welcome from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Sunday and Monday in Beinhauer Funeral Home, 2828 Washington Road, McMurray, PA 15317, 724-941-3211. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Tuesday, March 19, in St. Germaine Church, 7003 Baptist Road, Bethel Park. Entombment will follow in Queen of Heaven Cemetery, Peters Township, with military honors. Please add or view tributes at

Flora M. Kunkle

Loved her cats and feeding birds

Flora M. Kunkle, 92, of Cecil, passed away Wednesday, March 13, 2013, in McMurray Hills Manor, Canonsburg.

She was born December 20, 1920, in Cecil, a daughter of the late Maxmilian and Rosalie DeBoe Bourguignon.

Mrs. Kunkle was born and lived most of her life in Cecil, was a graduate of Cecil High School Class of 1939 and was a member of Cecil Missionary Alliance Church and Cecil Senior Center. She worked for the former RCA plant in Meadow Lands.

She loved her cats, feeding birds and animals in general and volunteered for Pet Search.

Surviving are a son, Darryl F. Bourguignon of Cecil, and a sister, Germaine “Geri” (Steve) Levkulich of St. Petersburg, Fla.

Deceased, in addition to her parents, are her husband, Jesse Kunkle; three sisters, Henrietta Cherokee, Elsie Main and Josephine Storez; and a brother, August Bourguignon.

At the request of Mrs. Kunkle, there will be no visitation. Service and interment will be private.

The family suggests donations be made to Washington Area Human Society or to Pet Search in her memory. Arrangements are entrusted to Salandra Funeral Service Inc., Joseph P. Salandra, owner/supervisor, 304 West Pike Street, Canonsburg, 724-745-8120. To view or extend condolences, please visit

Felix W. Lutz Jr.

Attendeed St. Genevieve, St. Patrick churches

Felix W. Lutz Jr., 64, formerly of Canonsburg, died Thursday, March 14, 2013, in Washington County Health Center, Chartiers Township.

He was born November 22, 1948, in Washington, a son of the late Felix and Stella Wisniewski Lutz.

Mr. Lutz was a member of the former St. Genevieve Church and St. Patrick Church of Canonsburg. He spent most of his life in Canonsburg and attended St. Genevieve grammar school.

He was the last of his immediate family.

Friends will be received from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday at Sollon Funeral Home Ltd., 30 East College Street, Canonsburg, J. David Sollon, supervisor, Phillip L. Sollon, director. Blessing services will be held at 1 p.m. Monday in the funeral home with a priest from St. Patrick Church officiating. Interment will follow in St. Patrick Cemetery, Canonsburg. Please visit for additional information and to view and leave condolences.

Wilma Russell Michelucci

1946 – 2013

Wilma “Sis” Russell Michelucci, 67, of Slovan, passed away Thursday morning, March 14, 2013, in her home.

She was born March 2, 1946, in Wheeling, W.Va., a daughter of the late James Ralph and Nellie Hazel Duvall Russell.

A graduate of Triadelphia High School, she worked for Zans Tastee Freeze in Burgettstown and Billy Boy’s Pizza in Slovan as well as being a homemaker.

Mrs. Michelucci was a member of Hickory United Presbyterian Church and enjoyed going to Rogers Flea Market, shopping with her grandchildren, vacationing in Savannah, Ga., and her dogs.

Her husband, James S. Michelucci, whom she married December 19, 1964, survives.

Surviving, in addition to her husband, are two sons, James Russell Michelucci and wife Carrie of North Strabane Township and Ronald David Michelucci and fiancée Cheryl Walge of Avella; three daughters, Rebecca Alyce Michelucci-Braun and husband Jay of Beaver, Viola Marie Shields of Manassas, Va., and Cindy Lynn D’Amico and husband Alphonso of Canonsburg; nine grandchildren, Caralee Conner, Elizabeth Ann Reese, Brooke Ashley Miller, Nicole Lindsey Froats, James Paul Caesar Michelucci, Nicolette Bennett, Abigail Marie Michelucci, Caitlin Alisha Michelucci and John Luke Braun; three great-grandchildren; a twin brother, William “Bub” R. Russell Sr. and wife Donna of Slovan; a niece, Mindy Bock and husband Brian; a nephew, William R. Russell Jr.; and dear friends Diane and Frank Serish and Wes and Gracie.

Deceased, in addition to her parents, are a daughter, Star Ann Michelucci, and a sister, Madaline Duvall.

To honor Mrs. Michelucci’s wishes, services officiated by the Rev. Michael Browning and interment in Mt. Prospect Cemetery, Hickory, were held privately under the direction of Lee & Martin Funeral Home, Burgettstown.

If so desired, memorial donations may be made in her memory to Amedisys Hospice, 1368 Mall Run Road, Suite 624, Uniontown, PA 15401.

James R. Recktenwald

1937 – 2013

James R. Recktenwald, 75, of Burgettstown, passed away Friday morning, March 15, 2013, in Weirton (W.Va.) Hospital.

He was born August 27, 1937, in Pittsburgh, a son of the late Raymond Henry and Catherine Queenan Recktenwald.

A 1955 graduate of St. Mary of the Mount High School, he earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Duquesne University in 1961.

Mr. Recktenwald retired in 1992 from the commonwealth of Pennsylvania Office of Vocational Rehabilitation.

He was a parishioner of Our Lady of Lourdes Roman Catholic Church, Burgettstown, and was a member of Knights of Columbus Council 3440, Burgettstown, and Bishop Hugh C. Boyle 4th Degree Assembly. He enjoyed going to casinos.

Surviving are two sons, Jude Thomas Recktenwald of Burgettstown and Raymond Henry Recktenwald of Houston; three daughters, Rebecca Ann Recktenwald of Washington, Kristine King of Burgettstown and Mary Margaret “Margie” Mayewski of Colliers, W.Va.; 10 grandchildren; and 11 great-grandchildren.

Deceased, in addition to his parents, are a son, Joseph James Recktenwald, who died in infancy, and a sister, Kathleen Panzo.

Friends will be received from 2 to 4 and 6 to 9 p.m. Sunday in Lee & Martin Funeral Home, 73 Highland Avenue, Burgettstown. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Monday, March 18, in Our Lady of Lourdes R.C. Church with the Rev. Bob Staszewski as celebrant. Interment will follow in Resurrection Cemetery, Coraopolis.

If so desired, memorial donations may be made in his memory to American Diabetes Association, 4075 Monroeville Boulevard, Monroeville, PA 15146, and/or Little Sisters of the Poor, 1028 Benton Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15212.

F. Jean Schirosky

Dedicated family woman loved bingo

F. Jean Schirosky, 83, of Washington, died Friday, March 15, 2013, in Washington County Health Center, Chartiers Township.

She was born May 8, 1929, in Washington, a daughter of Andrew Thomas and Hazel Laura Dunn Bradley.

Mrs. Schirosky was a 1948 graduate of Washington High School and worked for more than 20 years as a selector-packer at Brockway 7.

A dedicated family woman, she greatly enjoyed her great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren. She loved to play bingo and was a pet lover, especially her dog, Munchie.

Mrs. Schirosky was a member of First Lutheran Church.

On April 14, 1950, she married John Charles Schirosky Sr., who survives.

Also surviving are a son, John Charles Schirosky Jr. (Julianna) of Washington; a daughter, Linda Sue Amon (Jack) of Washington; a sister, Iris Irene Roup; three grandchildren, Jodi and Kimberly Ellis and Christie Kelley (Eric); 10 great-grandchildren; and three great-great-grandchildren.

Deceased are six brothers and four sisters.

Friends will be received from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Monday in William G. Neal Funeral Homes Ltd., 925 Allison Avenue, Washington, where services will be held at noon Tuesday, March 19, with the Rev. Dr. Kenneth Schott officiating. Burial will follow in Washington Cemetery.

Additional information and a guest book are available at

Ruth Smith

Ruth Smith, 84, of Washington, formerly of Rochester, N.Y., died Thursday, March 14, 2013.

Arrangements are incomplete and have been entrusted to Piatt and Barnhill Funeral Directors Inc.

A complete obituary will appear in a later edition.



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