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Michael Walter Nyholm Pliska


1943 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
Michael Walter Nyholm Pliska

Tucson, AZ - Michael Walter Nyholm Pliska, entered life eternal on July 16, 2018 in Tucson, AZ at the age of 74. He was born on December 11, 1943, the first of four children of Walter John Pliska and his wife, Regina Eva Litwinowicz in Adams, Berkshire, Massachusetts. Both parents are deceased. No one plans when they are going to leave this life, but Michael made the most of each day as well as he could. In his early life he began in Scouting, ending one badge short of a Life Scout, when a love of electronics took over his young life. At the age of 11, he made a ham radio transmitter and receiver by himself, and earned his ham radio license. It started a lifelong hobby which gave him a curiosity to meet the people of the world with whom he spoke. Michael won an NROTC Scholarship to Rensselar Polytech Institute, which was a great honor. His naval experience, including a year in Vietnam, taught him leadership, responsibility, loyalty, and steam engineering, not quite what his BEE had taught him. Michael was a commissioned officer in the United States Navy and rose to the rank of Lieutenant. He served aboard the USS Harland R Dixson DD708 and the USS Barry DD933. He also served under Commander US Naval Forces Vietnam, for which he earned a meritorious Bronze Star. With a BEE in Electrical Engineering, Michael enjoyed working for Proctor and Gamble Paper Company for 33 years, in Green Bay, WI, (Maintenance Manager, Area Maintenance Manager, Engineer and Engineering Group Leader) Cincinnati, OH, (Engineering Group Leader and Specialist in Papermaking Engineering) Neuss, Germany, (New Papermaking Machine Design and Training of Papermaking Engineers) and Manchester, England, (Supervision of New Papermaking Machine Design and Construction). His next big influence were three children, who gave him a great challenge to be a good father and nourish their intellect and self-reliance through teaching them the skills he had mastered. Through community involvement: serving on the Organizing Board of Montessori Children's World, working sound and special effects for Community Theater in Green Bay, teaching whitewater, kayaking, and canoeing for the American Canoeing Association, serving on the Proctor and Gamble Equality Group, working to ensure that minorities were well represented in the children's books for High School and Grammar School. Michael married Rev. Linda Pliska in 1987; he loved and cherished Linda. His world opened to many new experiences: Leading mission trips to the Holy Land, Jordan, and Egypt; participating in work trips to Ghana; evaluating and touring the United Methodist mission work in India; participating as a pastoral couple in European Methodist Church Development. He assisted his spouse in developing two international Congregations in Dusseldorf, Germany. Here he was called to enable, support and adopt a Ghanaian Family. This has been an 18 year journey. Michael also enjoyed 14 years of retirement, in which he traveled widely, enjoyed his children and grandchildren. He said he received many blessings during his life. Michael was deeply loved by his wife, family, and friends. Michael is survived by his wife, Rev. Linda Nyholm Pliska of Tucson, AZ; two daughters, Gay Pliska Matyshak (Stephen Aaron Matyshak) of West Bend, WI, and Suzanne Jean Pliska of Fort Myers, Fl, and a son David Michael Pliska, of Golden Valley, MN. Grandchildren are: Madeline Jean Pliska, Minneapolis, Alexander Isaac David Pliska, Stevens Point, WI, and Meaghan Rhiannon Matyshak, and Aaron Xavier Matyshak of West Bend. Two brothers, Alan Pliska (Jane Levy) Seattle, WA, and Brian Pliska (Beth McNicol), of Salt Lake City, UT, and Lauren Pliska, CA. A Memorial Service will be held at 3PM at First United Methodist Church, 501 Howe St. Green Bay, WI on Saturday, August 25: Visitation 2-3PM, Reception immediately following.
Published in Green Bay Press-Gazette on Aug. 12, 2018
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