John Slifko

  • "What a kind man, I remember him growing up on north third..."
  • "Great lost to Centre Park, I met John when my husband and I..."
    - Demitrues Huston
  • "There is no way to describe how shocked I was when I seen..."
    - Monika Winns
  • "John was an amazing individual. Had it not been for him,..."
    - John Printz
  • "I told my friend the other day about this passing of my..."
    - Mark Talbot Jr.

John Robert Slifko, 71, of Reading, Pa., passed away Friday, January 11th, at

Reading Hospital and Medical Center, West Reading.

John was born in Wareham, Mass., on

July 7, 1947, a son of the late Ethelyn

(Tucker) and John Paul Slifko.

John attended high school in La Plata, Md., was drum major of the marching band and graduated valedictorian in 1966. He

received a B.A. in economics from Princeton University in 1971, and a Juris Doctor degree from Vanderbilt University School of Law, Tenn. John had extensive experience in

construction and home remodeling and was a landlord for 28 years.

Raised in Maryland, John relocated to Reading in the 1980s. His community involvement began almost

immediately upon moving to Berks County. A reflection of his endeavors in Reading along with comments from local Civic leaders was highlighted in the Reading Eagle's

January 11th edition. John was also a member of Calvary UCC, Reading, and the Centre Park Historic District and a volunteer at St. Margaret's Church, Reading.

Public service and social justice were always the motivators of his life far more than amassing wealth or

attaining high ranking jobs. Although he earned a law

degree from Vanderbilt, he never worked as a lawyer,

preferring instead to put his legal skills to use on causes in which he strongly believed. He was always an advocate for children and for the poor.

When his brother, Eric, died tragically in a canoeing

accident in 1971, John, along with his parents, sister-in-law, family members and friends, used the insurance money to build and operate a camp in West Virginia for the 6th grade children of Charles County, Md., where Eric had taught school. For many of these disadvantaged children this was a first excursion outside of Maryland. John devoted his life to the camp for five years before returning to school to get his degree in law.

Along with his earnest public service, John will be

remembered as a kind gentleman who lived to serve others and cared deeply for his adopted home of Reading.

John is survived by his longtime companion, Sandra Seifret, of Reading, Pa.; his "adopted" son, Wesley Luchetta; a sister-in-law, Reola Phelps, of Denver, Colo.; and cousins: Bonnie Bowen, Ventura, Calif.; Katherine Remick, Atlanta, Ga.; Sally Alcorn, Boston, Mass.; Lyn Churchill, Tokyo, Japan; Roberta Ginini, Fresno, Calif.; and Nan Jesser, Denver, Colo.

He was predeceased by a brother, Eric Tucker Slifko.

Friends are invited to gather to celebrate John's life on Saturday, January 19th, at 1:00 p.m. at Calvary UCC, 640 Centre Ave., Reading, PA 19601. A service and memorial presentation will commence at 2:30 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in John's name to the Centre Park Historic District, 707 N. 5th St., Reading, PA 19601.

Arrangements entrusted to John P. Feeney Funeral Home Inc., 625 N. 4th Street at Centre Ave., Reading, PA 19601, 610-372-4160. Obituary and condolences at

Funeral Home
John Feeney Funeral Home
625 North 4th Street
Reading, PA 19601
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Published in Reading Eagle from Jan. 13 to Jan. 16, 2019