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Josephine H. (Skawski) Borek

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Josephine H.
(Skawski) Borek
Josephine H. Borek, beloved and devoted wife, mother, sister and daughter, died of natural causes at St. John's Home in Rochester, New York, on March 8, 2014. She was 96 years old. Josephine was born in Utica, New York, on November 22, 1917, where she attended Holy Trinity School. Polish was her first language. As a young woman, she was a member of the Polish Falcon Club, where she met her husband, John. They were married on May 17, 1941, shortly before his deployment into the United States Army. During part of her husband's army service, she lived with him in Texas and parts of the South. When she returned to Utica during the War, she worked at Savage Arms and took great pride in her job, making target sights for military equipment. Josephine was a great beauty. In the 1940s and 1950s, Josephine was compared to actress Gene Tierney; in the '60s and '70s to Jacqueline Kennedy. She had a great love of fashion and for several years was an amateur milliner making hats for her friends and relatives. Josephine and her husband were inseparable companions, as much in love on the last day of their marriage as on their wedding day. Her son, also named John, was born after a long series of life-threatening health crises and advice from her doctors not to have children. Her determination to have a family and her devotion to that family were her life-long occupations. Her husband, John Borek, was an executive with Art-Craft Optical in Rochester. Josephine, a six-decade resident of Brighton, spent her last years at The Gables of Brighton, the Rochester Presbyterian Home and St. John's Home. She was a bright and shining star to her many caregivers. Thank you Avis, Martha, Deborah, Linda, Mimi and the many others who made her last years happy ones. Josephine was predeceased by her husband, John; by her parents, Anna and Sebastian Skawski; and by her brothers and sisters, Walter Skawski, Mary Kondzielawa and John Skawski. Josephine is survived by her son, John, and her daughter-in-law, Jacqueline Levine; by her younger sister, Jane Cioch, of Utica; by her nieces and nephews, Marianne Skawski-Williams, Dianne Cioch-Handzel, Kathy Cioch-Nelson, John Cioch, Jr., David Cioch, Gerard Cioch, Kenneth Cioch, Clarissa Skawski and Philip Skawski. We also wish to acknowledge the Babiarz family of New York Mills and Utica. Her devoted friends include Theresa Beresniewicz, Krysia Mnick, Margaret Storms, the family of Richard and Lucinda Storms, the family of Paul and Sally Adams, the family of Ewa Hauser, the family of Eileen and John Daniel, and the family of Renato and Donatella Stocchi-Perucchio. Her special caregiver at The Gables was her great-nephew-by-marriage, Jordan Daniel. We thank the young people who offered her friendship in her later years: Mindy Fountain, Sara Korol, Philip Brune, Anthony Lovenheim Irwin and Diana Daniel Seroski. An additional thank you is extended to those who have helped the family with funeral arrangements: Lance Williams, Dianne Cioch-Handzel, Eve Elzenga and Annette Dragon. Josephine loved canaries. We wish to remember these feathered companions as well: Pietro, Pietro II and Ramona. Friends may call Sunday, March 16th, from 2-5 PM at Anthony Funeral Home, 2305 Monroe Avenue, Rochester. A Funeral Service will be held on Monday, March 17th, at 9:30 AM at Blessed Sacrament Church at the corner of Monroe Avenue and Oxford Street. Flowers are appreciated as are donations to With Love From Friends (withlovefromfriends.com). To share a memory or express a condolence, please write to her son at johnwborek@yahoo.com.
Published in The Observer-Dispatch on Mar. 12, 2014
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