Jan "John" Pietruszka, age 85, passed away peacefully on Sunday, October 2, 2011, at Palm Garden Nursing Home in Gainesville, Fla. He was born on June 19, 1926 in Sasiadowice, Poland on June 19, 1926, son of the late Tomasz and Tekla Misiurka Pietruszka. John immigrated to the United States in 1952. He had been employed as a machinist at Bucyrus Erie, American Meter and Kerner Tool & Die and retired from Reddog Industries after 18 years of service in 1992. Besides running a drill press, John enjoyed cheering for the Dallas Cowboys and New York Yankees and watching CNN for news and current events. He especially loved riding his lawnmower and running his snow blower. John had a hearty appetite and legendary "sweet tooth" for all of his 85 years. He was dearly loved and will be greatly missed. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 51 years, Erika Wess Pietruszka, on September 23, 2000, whom he married on August 29, 1949. He was also preceded in death by his best friend, Kazimierz "Kazu" Dudkiewicz of Erie in 1989, and all four of his siblings; two sisters, Klementyna and Helga, and two brothers, Wladyslaw and Piotr. John is survived by three daughters, Monica Smith and Irene Rafferty and her husband, Gary all of Erie and Theresa Sturzenbecker and her husband, Kim of Gainesville, Fla.; seven grandchildren, Timothy Smith (Marissa), Jennifer Smith (Stuart), Heather Smith (Davide), Elizabeth Pietruszka, Sara Hunt, Michelle Kowalczuk, and Sabrina Sturzenbecker; ten great-grandchildren; his nephew, Tomasz Pietruszka of Erie; good friend, Luise Dudkiewicz; sister-in-law, Gerlinde Spreik and her daughter, Doris, of Germany; as well as many relatives in his native homeland of Poland and a multitude of friends and neighbors in Erie. Friends may call at the Dusckas Funeral Home, Inc., East, 2607 Buffalo Road on Wednesday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and are invited to attend a Prayer Service there on Thursday at 10 a.m. followed by a Funeral Mass at St. James R.C. Church at 10:30 a.m. Interment, Wintergreen Gorge Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to
, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38101 or John Kanzius Cancer Research, 130 West 8th St., Erie, PA 16501. To send condolences, visit www.dusckasfuneralhome.com.
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Dusckas Funeral Home - East Side
2607 Buffalo Road
Erie, PA 16510
Published in the Erie Times-News on Oct. 4, 2011