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Pizar, Irena - Lehighton  
Mrs. Irena Pizar Mrs. Irena Pizar, 93, formerly of 75 Pine Hollow Drive, Lehighton, passed away Tuesday, July 28, in her new residence on 300 W. Crystal Lake Ave., Haddonfield, N.J. She was the widow of Wasyl Pizar, who passed away on April 15, 2003. Prior to retiring, she and her husband were proprietors in the grocery retail business in New York. Born in Uhorczy, the Ukraine, she was a daughter of the late Ivan and Anna Haluszka. She was a member of St. Vladimir's Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, Palmerton, and the Ukrainian Homestead Choir, Lehighton, where she sang alto. In her spare time, she enjoyed gardening and, as an excellent cook, enjoyed making pierogies and haluski. Surviving are two daughters, Anna, wife of Ramkishin Samat of Haddon Heights, N.J., and Luba Wojcik of Haddonfield; six grandchildren, Erik Wojcik, Alessandra Wojcik Borges (Pedro), Karina Wojcik Jaccard (Daniel), Susana Wojcik, Tara Samat and Maya Samat; and four great-grandchildren, Ariadne Wojcik, Arthur Jaccard, Leonardo Jaccard and Sophia Borges. Service: Panachida service 9:15 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 1, Andrew P. Ovsak Funeral Home, 190 S. Fourth St., Lehighton, with the Rev. Vlodomir Baran officiating; Divine Liturgy 10 a.m., St. Vladimir's Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, 101 Delaware Ave., Palmerton. Interment, St. Vladimir's Upper Cemetery, Palmerton. Call 8-9:15 a.m. Saturday. Contributions in her name may be made to the church, 18071. Online condolences can be offered at www.ovsakfh.com .
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Published in Times News on July 30, 2015
Ruch, Kathleen S. - Palmerton  
Mrs. Kathleen S. Ruch Mrs. Kathleen S. Ruch, 54, of Franklin Township, passed away on Tuesday, July 28, in the Inpatient Hospice Unit of the Lehigh Valley Hospital, Allentown. She was the wife of Barry L. Ruch. They marked their 26th anniversary last month. She worked for Service Electric Cable TV and Communications, Bethlehem, for 33 years, serving for the last 25 years as an executive assistant. Born in Allentown, she was a daughter of the late Joseph and Eleanor (Winter) Ehritz. Kathy was a member of St. John's Lutheran Church of Towamensing, Palmerton, and the Kaffee Klatsch. She was a former Relay for Life team leader for many years, and was active in numerous aspects of community life. She was a graduate of Dieruff High School, Allentown. Surviving in addition to her husband are a stepdaughter Jennifer, wife of Bryan Doyle; a stepson, Barry Ruch Jr.; seven grandchildren, Stephanie, Christopher, Kyle, Rachael, Karianna, Aaron and Lauren; a sister Debra, wife of Robert Kriebel; three brothers, Kevin, and his wife, Kim, Michael and James; and nieces and nephews. She was also predeceased by two brothers, Joseph and Ricky. Service: Memorial service 11 a.m. Monday, Aug. 3, St. John's Lutheran Church of Towamensing, 2915 Fireline Rd., Palmerton. Call 9-11 a.m. Monday in the church. Arrangements by T.K. Thomas Funeral Home, 145 Delaware Ave., Palmerton. Contributions in her name may be made to the American Cancer Soc., 101 W. Frack St., Frackville, PA 17931. www.tk-thomas-fh.com .
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Published in Times News on July 30, 2015
Schiebel, Catherine M. "Cathy" - Tamaqua  
Catherine M. "Cathy" Schiebel Catherine M. "Cathy" Shiebel, 75, of Tamaqua, passed away unexpectedly on Thursday evening, July 30, 2015, in the Sacred Heart Hospital, Allentown. She was the wife of Philip M. Schiebel, having celebrated their 26th wedding anniversary in November. She was born in Parryville, a daughter of the late Allen and Edna (Drumheller) Moyer. Cathy was last employed in the finishing department of the former Scotty's Fashions, Little Gap, for 30 years, retiring in 1996. Before that, from 1958 to 1960, she was employed as a waitress for the former Walk's Restaurant, Lehighton. She was a 1957 graduate of Lehighton High School. Survivors, in addition to her husband, include two daughters, Tina L. (James) Haydt, Deltona, Fla., and Chrystal L. Roberts of Palmerton; step-son Philip D. (Patricia) Schiebel of Orefield; two granddaughters, Jacklyn Roberts and Alexis Jones; three step-grandchildren and two step-great-grandchildren. She was predeceased by siblings Roland Moyer, Allen Moyer, Hilda Stricker, and a step-daughter, Debra H. Schiebel. Service: Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, Aug. 8, 2015 at 2 p.m. in the Robert S. Nester Funeral Home and Cremation Service, 2066 West Penn Pike, New Ringgold, with a calling hour beginning at 1 p.m. Interment will be held at the convenience of the family. Arrangements by Nester Funeral Home-New Tripoli, PA. Online condolences may be recorded at www.nesterfuneralhome.com . In lieu of flowers, please make contributions in her memory to Hillside SPCA, P.O. Box 238, Pottsville, PA 17901.
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Published in Times News on Aug. 1, 2015
Serfass, Claude O. - Middletown  
Claude O. Serfass Claude Obadiah Serfass, 91, of New Castle, DE, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, July 28. Born in Aquashicola, he was a son of the late Sarah and Claude Serfass. He proudly served in the Army during World War II and received several decorations.Claude married Helen Hoffman in 1944. They celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary this past September. He was a faithful member of the United Methodist Church, enjoyed singing the old hymns and loved camping, country music and dancing, his dogs, playing cards and family gatherings. He was involved with the Boy Scouts. Claude was a dedicated husband, father, grandpa and great-grandpa who will be sorely missed. Surviving in addition to his widow are a daughter, Kathryn Miller (husband Stephen); two sons, Ricky Serfass (wife Dana) and Michael Serfass; five grandchildren, Jason Miller, Jared Miller, Justin Miller (wife Stacy), C.B. Jennings (wife Laurie) and Danielle Serfass; and two great-granddaughters, Riley and Kayla Miller; and two sisters, Belva Greene and Naomi Snyder of Palmerton. He was also preceded in death by an infant daughter Claudia; and sister Sonia. Service: Funeral service noon Saturday, Aug. 1, Blue Mountain Community Church, 25 Oak St., Palmerton.
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Published in Times News from July 30 to July 31, 2015
Tirpak, Kathleen - Summit Hill  
Kathleen Tirpak Kathleen Tirpak, 83, of E. Vernon Street, Summit Hill, passed away on July 30, at St. Luke's Miners Memorial Hospital Geriatric Center in Coaldale. She was the wife of the late Peter Tirpak who passed away in September of 2013. Born in Summit Hill, she was the daughter of the late Michael and Frances (Stemnitsky) Rinko. She was a graduate of the former Summit Hill High School, Class of 1950. Kathleen co-owned and operated Northeast Chemical Supply in Lansford along with her husband. She was a member of St. John the Baptist Byzantine Catholic Church in Lansford where she was a CCD teacher for many years. She was a former Summit Hill Girl Scout leader and a former member of the Mahoning Valley Country Club, having been an avid golfer. Surviving is a Son, Thomas Tirpak, and his wife, Janel, of Summit Hill; a daughter, Joyce Tirpak of Summit Hill; four grandchildren: Nicole Mizak, Jennifer Evans and her husband, Chris, Matthew Tirpak and his wife, Tamara, and Danielle Milesky and her husband, Frank; five great-grandchildren: Gianna, Myla, Gabriel, Kroy and Anderson Jane; a sister, Ann Marie Pol of Lakeland, Fla. Service: Funeral Service is on Monday, Aug. 3, at noon from the Thomas J. Parambo Funeral Home, 54 W. Fell St., Summit Hill, with the Rev. Dr. Vasyl Chepelskyy officiating. Interment will follow at St. John's Byzantine Catholic Cemetery, Summit Hill. Calling hours are Monday from 10:30 a.m. to noon at the funeral home. Contributions, in her name, may be made to St. John the Baptist Byzantine Catholic Church, Lansford. Online condolences may be signed at www.parambofh.com .
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Published in Times News on Aug. 1, 2015

Obituaries from the Past Week

Bitsko, Jessica L. - Nesquehoning  
Jessica L. Bitsko Jessica L. Bitsko, 28, of 16 Acorn Lane, Jim Thorpe, entered into eternal rest on Thursday, July 23, in Philadelphia. Born in Abington, PA, she was a daughter of Thomas M. and Deborah L. (Wolfsberger) Bitsko. She was a TSS (Therapeutic Staff Support), working with children. She was a 2005 graduate of Jim Thorpe High School. She then attended LCCC, and then Temple University, graduating with a bachelor's degree in criminal justice.She was a member of St. Mary's Byzantine Catholic Church, Nesquehoning. Jessica enjoyed fishing, four-wheeling, reading and crocheting, and was an avid Phillies and Eagles fan. Surviving are father, Thomas M., and stepmother, Jacqueline Bitsko, of Jim Thorpe; her mother, Deborah Bitsko, and her companion, Barb Francis, of Tamaqua; two brothers, Dillon and Thomas M., both of Jim Thorpe; a stepbrother, Corey Francis, of Okinawa, USMC; a sister Cassandra of Jim Thorpe; paternal grandparents, Nicholas and Ruth Bitsko of New Britain, PA; and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins. Service: Funeral services Tuesday, July 28, with Divine Liturgy at 10 a.m. in St Mary's Byzantine Catholic Church, 141 W. High St., Nesquehoning, with the Rev. Peter Donish officiating. Interment, private. Call 6-8 p.m. Monday, Bruce A. Nalesnik Funeral Home, 57 W. Center St., Nesquehoning. Parastas service will be held during calling hours. Contributions may be made to the family. Online condolences may be expressed at www.nalesnikfh.com .
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Published in Times News from July 25 to July 27, 2015
Eschbach, Terry Lee (Memoriam) - Kunkletown  
In Loving Memory of Terry Lee Eschbach Jr. "TJ" It's Been 11 Years Since He Left Us On 7-29-04. It broke our hearts to lose you but you did not go alone. A part of each of us went with you on the day God called you home. If tears could build a stairway and memories a lane, we would walk right up to heaven and bring you home again. We Love You And Sadly Miss You Nana, Pappy, Mom, Dad, Kristin, Chad, Auntie, Jose, Chaise, Takoda, Nieces and Nephews
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Published in Times News on July 29, 2015
Frey, Mary Irene - Lehighton  
Mrs. Mary I. Frey Mrs. Mary Irene Frey, 92, of Lehighton, a former resident of Maple Shade Meadows, Nesquehoning, passed away on Saturday, July 25, in the Summit Nursing & Rehabilitation Center at Blue Mountain Health System, Lehighton. She was the widow of Ernest R. Frey, who died in 2009. Born in Palmerton, she was a daughter of the late Florence and Charles Ruch. She was a graduate of Lehighton Area High School. She worked at the Keystone Lamp Manufacturing Company, Slatington, for many years. She was of Lutheran faith. Surviving are a daughter Sharon, wife of Allen Young of Lehighton; a grandson, Ryan Young of Chester; and a granddaughter Heidi, wife of Mark Wojciechowski, and two great-grandchildren, Kyle and Haley Wojciechowski, all of Blandon. Service: Private family service. Arrangements by Schaeffer Funeral Home, Lehighton. Online condolences can be offered at www.schaefferfunerals.com .
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Published in Times News on July 28, 2015
Gallagher, Mary - Palmerton  
Mrs. Mary Gallagher Mrs. Mary (Riska) Gallagher, 70, of Palmerton, passed away peacefully on Saturday, July 25, in her home, with her family at her bedside. Born and raised in Palmerton, she was a daughter of the late Mike and Mary (Siska) Riska. She graduated from the former Sacred Heart Elementary School, Palmerton, Allentown Central Catholic High School and the St. Joseph's School of Nursing, Philadelphia.While attending St. Joseph's, she met her future husband, Bill Gallagher. They were married in Palmerton at Sacred Heart Church on June 10, 1967, and were celebrating 48 years of a wonderful marriage this year. Mary was stricken with inoperable pancreatic cancer in April, 2014, and dealt with treatments until June of this year. When diagnosed, she called it a "kick in the pants" and said, "OK let's move on." She had a positive attitude and a winning smile all her married life. She loved being a nurse and pursued her career early in their married life, but paused to be a stay at home mother to their three children. Later, she returned to nursing working as the assistant director of nursing at Calvert Manor Nursing Home, and, afterwards, as a volunteer at an adult day care, both in Rising Sun, MD. From these experiences, she said she witnessed worse things in life than death. In addition to nursing, her passions were her flower garden, family and travel. Her bags were always packed and her passport was always in her hand. With Bill, they visited Canada, Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales, 15 countries in Europe, Finland, Sweden, China, Turkey, Costa Rica, Australia, and New Zealand. They also traveled in the U.S., having visited every state but Idaho. Mary was a member of the Palmerton Concourse Club and the Palmerton Hospital Auxiliary, and was a Meals on Wheels volunteer. Surviving in addition to her husband are two daughters, Julia J., wife of Bill Dougherty, and granddaughter, Shannon, of Trachsville, and Jessica Pyle, and granddaughter, Jillian, of Harrisonburg, VA; a son, Timothy W. Gallagher, and his wife, Lydia Savramis, of Cumberland, MD; and a brother, Mike Riska, and his wife, Angie Dunson, of Hockessin, DE. She was also predeceased by her son-in-law, Timothy Pyle. Service: Memorial Mass 11 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 29, Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 243 Lafayette Ave., Palmerton. Interment, parish's new cemetery, Palmerton. Arrangements by Campton Funeral Home, 525 Delaware Ave., Palmerton. Contributions in her name may be made to St. John Neuman Regional School, Palmerton Campus, c/o the funeral home, 18071, to be used for tuition aid for needy families. Online condolences can be offered at www.schislerfuneralhomes.com .
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Published in Times News on July 29, 2015
Garr, Thomas V. - Gilbert  
Thomas V. Garr Thomas Vincent Garr, 65, of the Robinhood Lakes Development, Jonas, passed away on Monday, July 27, in the Pocono Medical Center, East Stroudsburg. He was the loving husband of Eileen Ann (McFarland) Garr. They celebrated their 37th wedding anniversary on Sept. 10, 2014. He owned and operated the Thomas Garr Appliance Service, Jonas, for 29 years. Born in Darby, PA, he was a son of the late Vincent DePaul Garr and Caroline Etta (Ogden) Garr. He graduated from West Catholic High School for Boys in Southwest, Philadelphia. Garr was a member of Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church, Gilbert. He had served as president of the Robinhood Lakes Lot Owners Association and as a director of roads in the development. Thomas loved the outdoors and loved to hunt. He also took care of his own chickens and llamas. We have been blessed with the presence of Thomas in our lives. He will be deeply missed by his loving wife, Eileen Ann; three daughters, Maricatherine of Jonas, Kathleen, wife of Timothy Craigie of Albrightsville, and Rosemarie of Germantown, MD; a son, Thomas V. II of Jonas; three brothers, Vincent, and his wife, Marie, of Chicago, IL, John, and his wife, Laura, of Jonas, and Robert, and his wife, Linda, of Kunkletown; and several nieces and nephews. Service: Mass of Christian Burial 11 a.m. Friday, July 31, Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church, Gilbert, with the Rev. Seth Wasnock as celebrant. Interment, Christ Memorial Park, Jim Thorpe. Call 6-8 p.m. Thursday, Donald N. Gower Funeral Home & Crematory, Rt. 209, Gilbert, and 9:30-10:30 Friday in the church. www.gowerfuneralhome.com .
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Published in Times News on July 29, 2015
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