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John P. Wasko


1924 - 2019
John P. Wasko Obituary
John P. Wasko

Born: February 17, 1924

Died: June 22, 2019

John P. Wasko, 95, of Cary IL passed peacefully surrounded by family on June 22, 2019. Born in Camden, New Jersey on February 17, 1924. John moved around the country with IBM spending most of his life in Florida.

John was a WWII veteran and served in the Navy in the original Sea Bee's unit CBMU 501. He spent most of his time in the Solomon Islands and New Zealand.

John had a long career of 33 years with IBM, which included supporting all the Apollo, Skylab, and Apollo-Soyuz space missions. He was the launch specialist in Ground Computer Operations. During that time John was awarded the "NASA's Apollo 15 Top Manned Flight Awareness Award" for his contributions to the work in the mobile launcher and Launch Control Center computers. In addition to his work on the US Space Program his career at IBM included support of SAGE (Semi Automated Ground Equipment) defense system and B52 navigation and radar equipment.

He was preceded in death by his father Frank Wasko (1961) and his Mother Pauline Hlopak Wasko (1962). John lost the love of his life, Gertrude Loretta (Rettberg), after 42 years of marriage to cancer in 1990. He never remarried staying dedicated to her for his whole life.

He is survived by his four children Loretta (Dennis) Beeman, John (Lyam) Wasko, Ken (Diana) Wasko, Paul (Joycelyn) Wasko and 17 Grandchildren and 23 Great Grand Children.

John's dedication and love of the family drove his hobby of creating video and slide shows of family events and activities. He had a passion for model trains and was a Lionel train enthusiast, restoring trains and building train platforms. He passed on his passion of trains to his grandchildren.

John was deeply dedicated to his Catholic faith and love for the Blessed Mother.

A visitation will be held at 6 PM on Wednesday followed by a memorial Mass at 7:00 PM at Saints Peter and Paul Catholic Church 410 First Street, Cary IL.

A full Catholic burial ceremony with military honors will be held in Florida the following week.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in his memory to .

For info: 847-639-3817 or kahlemoore.com
Published in the Northwest Herald on June 25, 2019
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