MOUNTAIN TOP — Edward J. Zilinsky, 68, passed away peacefully into God's loving arms on June 25, 2014, in his Mountain Top home with his adoring wife and devoted daughters by his side.
Ed was born in Avoca on Nov. 25, 1945, to the late John and Stella Zilinsky.
Ed enjoyed spending time with his children and grandchildren. Going to their sporting events and on many fun-filled family vacations, like the many years at Ocean City, New Jersey, were Ed's favorite pastimes.
Ed, a dedicated and supportive father to Lisa and Vicki, provided countless "Griswald" family vacations filled with unforgettable adventures and memories, but as his daughters say, "This is one journey that you need to make on your own, Clark."
His grandchildren fondly recall all their Grandpa adventures, like going to amusement parks, fishing, swimming, playing board games, horsing around and watching and talking about sports together. Grandpa was so proud of his eldest granddaughter, Maddi, and often stood in awe of her poise, intelligence, athleticism and beauty, telling her mother often, "She is such a doll." Ed and his first "boy," Alex, enjoyed talking about recent trades and stats of his favorite Dodger players. Zach and Grandpa had a special bond and enjoyed having a catch and snuggling while watching sports.
Ed was a 1963 graduate of Northeast High School in Duryea. Shortly upon graduation, he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and served as airman first class from 1963 to 1967, receiving numerous commendations for his meritorious duty and service. He later received a bachelor's degree in engineering from Penn State University and was employed at Bell Atlantic/Verizon in management for more than 35 years.
Ed was highly involved in his community and enjoyed supporting anyone in need. Most recently, he was a member of the American Legion Post 781, Mountain Top, and the Knights of Columbus at St. Jude Parish, Mountain Top.
Eddie Z, as he was light-heartedly known by his buddies, enjoyed golfing whenever possible; yearly cabin weekends in Dushore; many trips and cruises with his wife and friends; going polka dancing and generally having a good time. He was a long-time Brooklyn Dodgers, then Los Angeles Dodgers, fan and a Chicago Bears supporter, even though he did still root for the Phighting Phillies and those heartbreaking Eagles.
He is survived by his loving and caring wife, Wanda Popeck Zilinsky; and his pride and joy, Lisa Zilinsky Neeld, married to Erik, Holland, Pennsylvania, and Victoria Zilinsky, Mountain Top. He is also survived by his beloved grandchildren, Madelyn, 14, Alexander, 11, and Zachary, 8; and his sister, Janet Corbett.
His family thanks everyone for their prayers and support as he fought a courageous battle against cancer. Our special thanks go to all the dedicated nurses and staff of the Henry Cancer Center for their kindness over the past months and to the Erwin Hospice nurses for going above and beyond to care for Ed during the final stage of his battle.
There will be a Mass of Christian Burial at 9:30 a.m. Monday in the St. Jude Church, Mountain Top. Interment will follow in St. Mary's Cemetery, Hanover Township. Relatives and friends may call from 4 to 6 p.m. Sunday at the McCune Funeral Home, 80 S. Mountain Blvd., Mountain Top.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in Ed's name to the SPCA of Luzerne County to support Ed's soft-hearted love of animals, especially the neglected and unwanted.