WILKES-BARRE — James L. "Terp" Terpak, 63, of Wilkes-Barre, passed away on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, at the Wilkes-Barre General Hospital.
Born to the late Michael Terpak and Stella (Mycek) Terpak, Jim was a lifelong resident of Wilkes-Barre. After his graduation from James M. Coughlin High School, Jim enlisted in the U.S. Army, serving as a sergeant with the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment (Blackhorse) during the Vietnam War from 1969 to 1970. He was awarded two Bronze Star service medals and his Combat Infantryman Badge in addition to being a Purple Heart recipient.
Following his service, Jim worked at the Tobyhanna Army Depot as an electronics mechanic, retiring in 1996.
Jim maintained an active social life in his retirement as a member of the VFW Post 5207, Moscow, and, as an avid dart player, spent years playing for the Luzerne County Traveling League. With a love for metal detecting, Jim was additionally a longtime member of the Black Diamond Treasure Hunting Club and frequently participated in the club's annual events.
Jim enjoyed keeping in touch with his friends, family and brothers-in-arms, frequently taking to the Internet to update his loved ones with photos of his children, grandchildren, pets, community news and small messages highlighting both his love for those in his life and unfailing sense of humor.
Jim leaves behind his wife of 27 years, Deborah Terpak, Moosic; his daughters, Amanda Herrmann, Wilkes-Barre; Ashley Woodrow, DeLand, Fla.; Jamie Terpak, Wilkes-Barre; Julia Terpak, serving in Afghanistan; and three grandchildren, Carleigh, Aloah and Caleb.
Funeral services will be at 10 a.m. Saturday in the Simon S. Russin Funeral Home, 136 Maffett St., Plains Township, with Archpriest Joseph Martin officiating. Interment with military honors will follow in Holy Resurrection Orthodox Cemetery, Plains Township. Family and friends may call 6 to 8:30 p.m. Friday.
After the funeral, family and friends are invited to attend a reception service to honor and celebrate Jim's memory, with the location being provided at a later date.