Joseph A. Habersky, wonderful husband and father, age 65, a resident of Dallas Twp., passed away on Friday afternoon, Nov. 8, 2013, at the Kindred Hospital, Wilkes-Barre, after a valiant fight against pancreatic and gastric cancer.
Born on March 2, 1948, in Kingston, Joseph was the son of the late Felix and Margaret (Stofko) Habersky. Raised in Swoyersville, Joe was a graduate of Scranton Preparatory School, class of 1965. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in biology from King's College in 1969 and his Master of Science degree in general science from the University of Scranton in 1981. Additionally, Joe earned 72 credits beyond his master's degree. Joe spent the first year of teaching in the Queen Anne's County School District in Centre-ville, Md., where he made many friends who remained close throughout the years. Then, from 1970 until his retirement in 2006, Joe taught science for the Wyoming Valley West School District. Joe was a founding member of the Luzerne County Science Teachers' Association (LCSTA), which honored students who showed a keen interest in the sciences. He was also a member of the PSEA-Retired and the PASR. Joe served as a member of the PSEA National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania University Evaluation Team. He was honored to be included in "Who's Who Among American Teachers."
Joe was a third-degree member of the Knights of Columbus, Assumpta Council 3987, Luzerne. Additionally, he was a member of the Sons of the American Legion, Sonestown, Pennsylvania, and the Back Mountain Men's Ecumenical Group (BMMEG). A life member of the NEPA Genealogical Society, Joe greatly enjoyed researching his family history.
Joe found great joy in visiting others in local nursing homes and hospitals before his own illness. Some of his interests and hobbies included roller skating, gardening, reading and taking Tai Chi classes. One of his special memories was from the summer of 1990, when he took an aviation course at Lock Haven University and was given the opportunity to pilot a glider.
A faithful Catholic, Joe was a member of St. Therese's Church, Shavertown, where he attended daily Mass whenever he could. Active within his church, Joe served in the parish's Hospitality Ministry and belonged to the Men's Faith Sharing Group. He also served for three years on St. Therese's Pastoral Council.
Joe is survived by his wife, the former Karen Dzurovcin, with whom he celebrated 40 years of marriage on Nov. 3; and his daughter, Elena, who is currently teaching English in Amman, Jordan. Elena is one of five Fulbright recipients from the 2013 University of Scranton graduating class. Joe was extremely proud of his daughter's determination and accomplishments and through her travels, Joe was able to see Europe and the Middle East.
Also surviving Joe are his sister, JJ (Jacinta) Beers and her husband, Bill, of Towson, Md.; his brother, Romuald Habersky and his wife, Roberta, of Swoyersville; his mother-in-law, Irene Dzurovcin, of Wilkes-Barre Twp.; his sister-in-law, Janice Wilbur and her husband, Edward, of Pittsburgh; his nephew, Matthew Beers; his niece, Julie Beers; his godchildren, Caryn Kuebler and Jessica DeLucca; his aunt, Jean O'Donnell of Clarks Summit; and many wonderful cousins and their spouses and cherished friends too numerous to mention.
Joe was a firm believer in donating blood throughout his adult life and gave until he could not anymore. During his illness, he received both blood and platelet transfusions many times. In his memory, please donate to the American Red Cross blood drives whenever you can. A special thank you to all who visited and cared for Joe during his illness.
Joe was privately laid to rest in Mount Olivet Roman Catholic Cemetery, Carverton. A Blessing Service with the Rite of Committal was officiated by the Rev. James J. Paisley, pastor of St. Therese Roman Catholic Church, Shavertown.
A funeral Mass and celebration of Joe's life will be held at a date to be announced in January of 2014 in St. Therese Roman Catholic Church, Shavertown.
Funeral arrangements for the Habersky family were entrusted to the care of the Wroblewski Funeral Home Inc., 1442 Wyoming Ave., Forty Fort. For additional information or to send the Habersky family an online message of condolence, you may visit the funeral home website www.wroblewskifuneralhome.com