John Bielski of Sylvania, Ohio, formerly of the Polish Village in North Toledo passed away March 26, 2013 at Hospice of Northwestern Ohio in Perrysburg at the age of 92, surrounded by his loving family. He was born in Toledo on February 2, 1921 to Walter and Pauline Bielski. He attended the former St. Hedwig's school and graduated from Woodward High School in 1938. He served his country as a Sergeant in the Army during World War II
, firing a 90 mm gun. The war took him to Algeria, Tunisia, Sicily and Italy. In Italy, he was a member of the U.S. 5th Army commanded by Lieutenant Mark Clark and landed on Anzio Beachhead as part of Operation Shingle on his birthday in 1944. He worked at Libbey Glass for 37 years, retiring in 1978. He started his career at Libbey in the Forming department and upon his retirement, was a supervisor in the Decorating department. He then purchased a Snap-On Tools business and among other areas of Toledo, his route took him to his old Polish neighborhood in North Toledo. After selling that business, he and wife, Wanda purchased the F & S Western store on Western Avenue. During his retirement years, he enjoyed golfing, square dancing, poker, euchre, scrabble, casinos and traveling. He purchased his first set of golf clubs, Jack Nicklaus, in the early 1960s with Top Value Stamps. As a teenager, his first job was as a pin setter (long before the days of automation) at the former Mercury Lanes on Stickney Avenue, where he learned to bowl. He bowled two 300 games and a 792 series with one of them, a rare event in 1959 during the heyday of bowling. His 792 series stood as the house record at Mercury. He bowled in the annual Peterson Classic in Chicago as well as the American Bowling Congress' (ABC) national tournament for many years. His travels took him throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia and on an Alaskan cruise. You could always find him working a crossword puzzle sitting in his chair in the sun room of his home where he made everyone feel welcome. He was a fan of the Cleveland Indians, Toledo Rockets and the Ohio State Buckeyes. He was a member of the Libbey Golden Emblem Club. He and Wanda were volunteers of the Toledo Area Metroparks where he would collect money at Saturday morning pancake breakfasts at Wildwood. There were two things he would typically say when you were leaving his home, "Do you know the way home?" and "Peace."
He was preceded in death by his first wife, Eileen whom he married in 1944; parents, Walter and Pauline Bielski; sister, Angela, and brother, Bernard. He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Wanda; sons, Mike (Doug) and Cary; stepsons, David (Robin) and Dan Burnette; six grandchildren, Roxanne, Jason, Kristin, David Jr., Daniel and Annie; four great-grandchildren, Angela, Annabelle, Zoe and Jacob; sisters, Gera Slawinski and Sylvia Karnikowski; sisters and brothers-in-law, Phyllis, Diane, Sue, Jimmy, Raymond and Kenneth (Nina) King and Inez (Don) Stevens, and many nieces and nephews. He was blessed with special caregivers, Dr. Thomas and Tammy McAlear, Dr. Donald and Maura Crescenzo, and Dr. Femi and Tolani Afolabi and numerous friends.
Friends will be received at the Walker Funeral Home, 5155 Sylvania Ave., (west of Corey) on Friday from 2-9 p.m. and on Saturday after 10 a.m., where funeral services will follow at 11 a.m. Interment will take place in Toledo Memorial Park. The family would like to thank the Hospice in-home care doctors, nurses and aides and those who provided for his care at Hospice of Northwest Ohio in Perrysburg and direct any contributions in John's name to Hospice at 30000 River Rd., Perrysburg, Ohio 43551. Condolences may be sent to the family at walkerfuneralhomes.com