ST. MARYS - Robert "Bob" John Troha, 82, a lifelong resident of St. Marys, passed away on Saturday (June 25, 2016) surrounded by family.
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He is survived by his five children, Steve Troha of St. Marys, John (Phuong) Troha of Vietnam, Jennifer Brem of St. Marys, Amy (Rod) Anderson of St. Marys and Janine Laughner of St. Marys; eight grandchildren, Steven Troha, Jeremy Brem, Cody Laughner of Los Angeles, Janae Anderson, Trey Anderson, Tyler Troha, Shawnee Troha and Sundance Troha; his brother, Jerry Troha of St. Marys; and 12 nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his wife, Mimi; brother, Jim (Pierre); and his parents, John and Katie Troha, who immigrated from Slovenia and Croatia.
He also leaves behind a caregiver, Ann Hoffman, HA (Pham Viet Na), who is a dear friend of the family.
Bob was born on Dec. 3, 1933, at Andrew Kaul Memorial Hospital in St. Marys. He attended Central Catholic High School from 1947 to 1949 and graduated from St. Marys Area Public School in 1951.
Bob graduated from Bryant and Stratton College in Buffalo, N.Y., in 1953 with a degree in accounting and business administration. Upon graduation, Bob began work at Speer Carbon Co. before enlisting in the U.S. Army, where he served as personnel administrative specialist until he was honorably discharged in 1955.
Bob then began his professional working career at Keystone Carbon Co. as a salesman in the Thermistor Division, where he was responsible for international sales for the next 40 years. He retired without one recorded sick day during his entire professional career. From 1984 to 1993, Bob was the owner of the Thompson & Montgomery Ready Mix Concrete Plant. Since his retirement from Keystone until his passing, Bob was employed as a sales consultant for COMTEC Manufacturing providing the powdered metal components used lighter production at Zippo Manufacturing Co. He was also a Zippo promotional products representative, an independent Zippo distributor for the northwestern Pennsylvania area and the "Founding Father" of Zippo Vietnam.
Bob was president and secretary of the SNPJ (Slovenian National Benefit Society) Lodge #581 from 1982 to present. He was instrumental in initiating the PA CleanWays cleanups on Jackson Road. Bob was chairman of the Young Democrats from 1970 to 1990 and he served as the St. Marys Benzinger Township tax collector from 1970 to 1974. He was also on the board of directors of Phoenix Educational Foundation since its initiation in 2011. He was the local liaison between Elk County Catholic High School and the Phoenix Education Students from Vietnam, who knew him as "Grandpa."
Bob married the love of his life, Mimi Fritz, who he always called his beauty, on May 10, 1958. He enjoyed his children and grandchildren and loved going to the camp every day. He also enjoyed fishing and hunting at Swissmont, hand feeding the birds, polkas, playing cards with his friends and his hobby of selling Zippo merchandise at the Hazen Flea Market, where he made many friends. He loved going out to eat, his martinis and the "scenic route" to any destination.
Bob was a member of Sacred Heart Church. He was a veteran of the U.S. Army, serving during the Korean War. Bob was an avid Pittsburgh Pirates and Steelers fan and coached Knothole (Little League) Baseball for many years. He played softball and liked going bowling in his youth.
Bob's memberships included the Polka Boosters, Croatian Fraternal Union, SNPJ, Zippo Collectors Club, Case Collectors Club, Knights of Columbus, Catholic Men's Fraternal, St. Marys Moose, St. Marys American Legion, St. Marys Sportsmen, St. Marys Beagle Club and the YMCA. Even though he did not belong to the Ridgway Elks Club, he made many new friends there.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated in Sacred Heart Church at 11 a.m. Wednesday with the Rev. Eric Vogt, OSB, pastor, as celebrant. All are welcome to attend and celebrate Bob's life. Full military rites will be accorded by the St. Marys Servicemen's Burial Detail. Burial will follow in St. Marys Cemetery. Visitation is from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Lynch-Radkowski Funeral Home, St. Marys.
Donations can be made to Girl Scout Troop 20234, c/o Amy Anderson, 510 Light Road, St. Marys, PA 15857; or the Phoenix Educational Foundation, c/o 131 Bennett Road, St. Marys, PA 15857.
Online condolences may be offered at www.lynch-radkowski.com.
Lynch-Radkowski Funeral Home
169 Center Street
St. Marys, PA 15857
Published in The Bradford Era from June 27 to July 4, 2016