Andrew Anthony Sapko, 94, of 150 Davis St., passed away Friday (Oct. 24, 2014) at the Bradford Manor with his family by his side.
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Born Sept. 21, 1920, in Degolia, he was a son of the late Andrew and Anna Jesenko Sapko. On Oct. 22, 1949, in Bradford, he married Mary Jeane Hannon Sapko, who died Sept. 17, 2012.
On Sept. 4, 1942, he enlisted in the U.S. Army, serving during World War II in the European Theater. He was on a ship heading to Japan when they surrendered and the war ended. He was honorably discharged as a corporal on Jan. 26, 1946.
He had been employed at the Pennhills Country Club, JCPenney and Bryner Oil Co., and worked at W.R. Case & Sons Cutlery Co. for many years. He was recently honored on July 23, 2014, for being the oldest Case Cutlery retiree. Andy's love for Case Cutlery never diminished after his retirement. One of his joys was attending the bi-annual gatherings in Bradford. He would count down the days until the event began and he wore his Case t-shirts with pride.
Andy was a dedicated husband, father, son, brother, and grandfather. He loved his family and often times put their needs before his own.
Andy attended school in Custer City. He completed classes through eighth grade, at which time he left to find work to help support his family. Although others felt differently, Andy believed something was lacking in his life since he was never able to complete school. Andy surprised many including himself, as he used his skills of artistry and woodworking to become a master carpenter. Works of art created with his hands will forever remain in the homes of family members and friends.
From early in life, Andy contributed much to the community which he was proud to call home. His bright smile welcomed the young and old. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and gardening. He also loved birds and time was put aside every day to make a trip to the mall parking lot, where he would toss food to the birds. Weekends were game days, as he waited with anticipation for Penn State and Notre Dame to hit the field. Dressed in one of his favorite sweatshirts, he cheered on his teams.
He was a devoted Catholic, attending masses at both St. Patrick and St. Bernard churches. Mr. Sapko was a member of St. Bernard Roman Catholic Church, VFW Post #212, Eagles Club, the Greater Bradford Senior Center, American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars.
Surviving are two daughters, Janice (Dave) Erickson of Columbia, Mo., and Mary Lou Sapko of Bradford; two sons, Martin (Kris) Sapko of Bradford and Gordan (Kathy) Sapko of Bethal Park; one sister, Helen Sapko of Custer City; eight grandchildren, Lindsey Mahoney, Lori Erickson, Matthew Sapko, Mark Sapko, Bryna Beech, Danielle Sapko and Nicole Sapko; great-grandchildren, Kieran Mahoney, James Mahoney, Dillon Mahoney and McKinley Beech; and several nieces and nephews.
In addition to his wife and parents, he was proceeded in death by five sisters, Alene and Eilene Sapko, Margaret Zande, Mary Reep and Anna Tubiola; and five brothers, infant Andrew Sapko, Michael Sapko, John Sapko, Steven Sapko and George Sapko.
Family will receive friends from 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Hollenbeck-Cahill Funeral Homes Inc., 33 South Ave., Bradford, where a prayer service will be held at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at noon at St. Bernard Church with the Rev. Raymond Gramata, pastor, and the Rev. Patrick Melfi, pastor of Our Lady of Peace in Salamanca, N.Y., as con-celebrants. Military honors will be accorded outside the church following Mass. Burial will be in St. Bernard Cemetery.
Memorials, if desired, may be made to St. Bernard Elementary School, 450 West Washington St., Bradford, PA 16701; the Bradford Senior Center, 60 Campus Drive, Bradford, PA 16701; or a
Online condolences may be made at www.hollenbeckcahill.com.
Hollenbeck-Cahill Funeral Homes Inc.
33 South Avenue
Bradford, PA 16701
Published in The Bradford Era from Oct. 25 to Nov. 3, 2014