WATSONTOWN — Jack Wasilewski, of 39 Center St., Watsontown, died peacefully in the early hours of July 18, 2021. He lived for a mighty 90 years and his passing places an earthly pause on his 74-year relationship with his loving wife, Joan Wasilewski, who he was married to for an incredible 69 years.
Jack has a legacy of four children, eight grandchildren and a great-grandson, Jack Wasilewski Jr., of Hawley, married to Cindy and father to sons Derik and Kyle, Jeffery Wasilewski, of Lancaster, married to Cathy and father to Alexander and Steven, who is father to great-grandson Elias, Janine Randall of Watsontown, married to Lake and mother to Gabrielle, Ethan, and Alexa, and Jamie Wasilewski, of Stafford, Va., married to Cathey.
Born in 1931 to Anna and Joseph in Kulpmont, he was raised in a large family and is survived by sisters Mary Concitis, Betty Kandrat and brother Vince (Bill) Wasilewski.
After a childhood of coal cracking and “swimming in the strippings” in Mount Carmel he graduated from Kulpmont High in 1949. Shortly before, he met his beloved Joanie at a party and never looked back. His partnership with his wife and Army service during the Korean War provided him with the confidence and drive to succeed in both work and life.
He spent 43 years with Rea & Derick Drugs (now CVS) working from fountain server to an executive level position managing the distribution operation for the company.
While he worked for a living, he never let work become his life. He was offered opportunities in Harrisburg, welcomed Mary, his mother-in-law into his home and focused on raising four children. Boy Scouts, camping and friendships in their close-nit neighborhood ruled the day.
In 1971 work transferred him to Watsontown, and a home that he and Joan lived in for 49 years. He quickly established himself in the community joining the Watsontown Lions Club where he served as president in 1982, He was active in multiple parent organizations at the Warrior Run School District where each of his children graduated. A highlight of this time was hosting exchange students from across the world – bringing new cultures and different perspectives to his door. These experiences affected the lives of his family and the students in many happy and unexpected ways, and over the years Jack was delighted to welcome several back into his home to meet their own children.
A man of deep faith, Jack was a member and leader in St Joseph’s Catholic Church in Milton. He became one of the first Extra-Ordinary Ministers at St Joe’s and offered communion and comfort inside and outside of the church until just a few years ago.
Jack enjoyed a long retirement with his Joanie — dividing time between trailer homes in Lady Lake, Fla., Diehl’s Campground in Bloomsburg, and their home which was always filled with treats for their grandchildren.
His life will be celebrated by friends and family from 10 to 10:45 a.m. July 23, at the Shaw Funeral Home, 400 N. Front St. Milton. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m. at St. Joseph Church, 109 Broadway, Milton, with the Rev. John D. Hoke officiating. Burial with military honors will follow in Watsontown Cemetery, where all are welcome. Following the burial all are invited to a lunch celebration from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Watson Inn, Watsontown.
“Drive Safe and God Bless.” Condolences may be shared at www.shawfuneralhomeinc.com.