Mark Pelak
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Mark Pelak, 65, of Kingston, died on Sunday. He was stricken ill while bicycling and died in Wilkes-Barre General Hospital.

Born on June 13, 1948, in Wilkes-Barre, he was the son of the late Joseph Peleak and the late Anne Cooper Peleak. Mark grew up in the Back Mountain and graduated from Dallas Senior High School in 1966. He was a 1970 graduate of King's College , Wilkes-Barre, and earned a Juris Doctorate from Willamette University College of Law in Salem, Ore., in 1973. He began his legal career as a staff attorney for Legal Services of Northeastern Pennsylvania and in 1976 became an associate in the Wilkes-Barre firm of Winkler, Danoff and Lubin. Mark earned a civil service appointment as a Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation judge in 1980.

Throughout his career, he also maintained a limited general practice. His greatest satisfaction as a lawyer and a judge was, as he simply put it, "helping people." Over the years, he helped countless clients and workers' compensation claimants and will be remembered for his compassion, common sense and unwavering commitment to doing the right thing.

Mark was an avid bicyclist and always looked forward to Saturday-morning rides and socializing with his bike mates out of Around Town Bicycles. There was always room for a newcomer on any ride Mark was on; he took real pleasure in helping new cyclists feel comfortable on the road and welcome in the group.

Mark was a loving husband and father who took his greatest joy from his family.

He is survived by his wife, Anne Straub Pelak, with whom he would have celebrated 40 years of marriage in August, and his daughters, Mary Elizabeth and Amy Justine, both of Philadelphia. He is also survived by his stepmother, Anne Gryziec Peleak, Kingston, and half-brother, Jeffrey Peleak, and his wife, Carolyn, Greensburg, Pa.; and by his sister- in-law, Peggy Ceraulo, Madison, N.J., and nephew, Tom Ceraulo, New York, N.Y.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10 a.m. on Thursday in St. Ignatius Church, Kingston. Friends may call from 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Kopicki Funeral Home, 263 Zerbey Ave., Kingston. In lieu of flowers, donors may make a donation in Mark's memory to the charity of their choice.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in Times Leader on Jul. 9, 2013.
No memorial events are currently scheduled. To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
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Memories & Condolences
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50 entries
July 3, 2020

Mark was one of the true friends I could always count on, no matter what I needed. I enjoyed our Harley riding together, especially the trip to the Harley-Davidson factory around 1992.
Ronald Oley
July 4, 2019
Mark was a wonderful co-worker, and friend. He took time out of his busy schedule to attend a performance I had with my dog at the Pittston Fair. He came to my Mom's memorial service at the nursing home. His presence and thoughtfulness meant everything to me. I will always remember you with the utmost respect and fondness Mark. You were a genuinely good person, and I was privileged to have known you.
Judy Endo
August 7, 2013
I was very sorry to learn of Mark's passing last month. Mark was an exclent judge, mentor, and human being. My sincere sympathies to his family
Tom Kutz
July 19, 2013
Mark, you will be missed greatly. In the short time I've known Mark I can say he was truly a Great Person. I already miss our conversations at the office building where we both worked. God Speed Mark! My blessings to your family. I'll think of you every time i see a cyclist and drive around the lake. -Ali Bagheri
Ali Bagheri
July 18, 2013
we are very sorry to hear of such a young man passing.
our prayers and thoughts are with his family. he was so
down to earth
Dr william J ryan and Marguerite ryan
July 14, 2013
Dear Anne and daughters, I was very sorry to hear of Mark's passing, although, I have never met Mark he was a cousin of ours, from a big family. I've heard a lot about him from our Great Aunt Nettie and their visits at Christmas time with Mark's Dad and Family. I wish I had met him and I just want to express my deep sympathies to you and your daughters.It is a great sorrow but he is in a better place now.
Donna Kosko Stankiewicz
Donna Kosko
July 13, 2013
Dear Anne, Mary and Amy,
Deepest sympathies to you on the sudden passing of your wonderful husband and father. Meeting Mark at your home
so many years ago, I was struck at the perfect pairing of 2 different, incredible personalities, who shared beautiful values of family, home, work ethic; effortless integrity, giving to others while quietly inspiring all around you; using keen intelligence to foster growth in others; living by kindness, good example, humility; living a biking passion, rather than dreaming about it. God be with each of you. Love from our whole family.
Jeannine Ayres
July 12, 2013
I briefly worked at the workers comp office many years ago and was impressed by how kind and great Mark was. So sorry for your loss.
July 12, 2013
Ann and Family

I am so sorry to here of Marks passing, I remember all the good time we had growing up on Davis St.
He was a good friend and a wonderful person who would always lend a hand when he could. I will always remember him fondly and it is a honer to call him my friend.
Bob Updyke
July 11, 2013
Anne and Family,

We would like to send our sincere condolences to all of you. We often completed the SMR's with Mark in Wilkes Barre.

He was always so kind and supportive. We were welcomed immediately into the group.

Pedal on, Mark!
Jeff & Matthew Dymond
July 11, 2013
Anne, my sincere condolences to you and your family. It's been so long since I've seen Mark, but I will always remember him as a wonderful, kind-hearted man. My prayers are with you all.
Joanne Smith Snyder
July 11, 2013
I had the pleasure of appearing before Mark on several cases and always found him to be reasonable and fair. After each hearing we ususally spent a few minutes talking about cycling. He always said we should do RAGBRAI together. Unfortunately, that will now never happen.
Brian Carter
July 11, 2013
Dear Anne, Amy, and Mary,

I want to express my great sadness over Mark's passing.

He was a wonderful neighbor, and equally, a great friend to our family.

I especially recall the many times that my Father and Mark would exchange opinions on all manner of topics, and discuss news and world events, with one another.

Mark was much the same with everyone in our family: Always eager with a warm “hello”; always sincere; always deeply caring.

May your family find comfort, peace, and inspiration in Mark's life and memory.
Michael Moskow
July 11, 2013
Judge Mark, it was an honor and a privilege to work with you over the years. God bless your family in their time of grief.
Richard J Lipuma
July 11, 2013
It was always a pleasure to see Mark at our bike shop, more so on a ride, where his pleasure in being around other cyclists was contagious. It will be impossible to duplicate his easygoing hellos. But in his honor, we will try to be a bit more cheerful, and reach out a bit more every day to our fellow cyclists (and pedestrians!) We will miss Mark. So sorry for your loss of a good man. Sincerely, Mike and everyone at Trophy.
Michael McGettigan
July 11, 2013
Mark went out of his way to connect and make everyone feel welcome. His generosity and kind nature will never be forgotten but it will be missed.
July 11, 2013
Anne, I am so sorry! I wish I had known him but he sounds like a great guy and I am sure with you, he was. "Joyful" that he could go doing whta he so loved.
All the best to you.
July 10, 2013
Melissa Podcasy
July 10, 2013
I did a secretarial internship with Mark's law firm in Kingston during the first week of August, 1983. I also got to sit in on a workmen's comp hearing with him. Mark was an extremely nice, caring, and knowledgeable, person. My thoughts and prayers go out to your family at this difficult time.
Paula Gavlick
July 10, 2013
My deepest sympathy goes out to Mark's family. Mark was not only my attorney but my friend as well. Over the years we have spent many hours in his office reminiscing the past and looking at the future. He loved biking so much that often he would tell me to quit chasing that little white ball around the course on the weekends and come out and do something really fun. A great guy will be missed by many.
Paul Skrip
July 10, 2013
Judge Pelak was a role model to me. His kindness and empathy will always be remembered. My sincerest condolences to his entire family. Heaven has gained a very great man. RIP.
Robert Hinkin
July 10, 2013
My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.
July 10, 2013
My deepest sympathies to you and your family. So wonderful to see you recently. May God bless you all. Am thinking of you.....
Pam Motzer Barnes
July 10, 2013
Dear Anne,

I'm so deeply sorry for your loss. You and your family have my most sincere sympathies. You will be in our thoughts and prayers.
Del Lucent
July 10, 2013

So sorry to hear the news of your husband's passing. From what I can see here, he was a very wonderful man.
Tom Thorne
July 10, 2013
Dear Pelak Family,

Our deepest sympathies go out to all of you. We will keep your family in our prayers.
Dave Kluchinski
July 10, 2013
Anne, I am so sorry to hear about the passing of you husband. Please give my condolences to you daughters also.
Barbara Lastovica
July 10, 2013
I was a good friend of Mark's in high school at Dallas. Your tears will be wiped away and there will be joy in the morning. Mark always wanted to fly and I believe his now flying on the wings of angels
July 10, 2013
Dear Ann and family,

My heart is so sad: my sympathies are with you. Mark had a generous soul who always made time to welcome and include others: an advocate for justice. He will be missed in more ways than imagined (on the bicycle and off)
Linda Winkler
July 10, 2013
Ann and family, Mark was a true friend and fellow biker. I fondly recall our rides and working with Mark. He will be sadly missed.
Ron Oley
July 10, 2013
Dear Ann and Family,
My thoughts and prayers go out to you during this very difficult time. Sincerely and with deepest sympathy,
Paul Lumia
July 10, 2013
Dear Anne,

I am shocked and saddened by Mark's sudden passing. Please accept my sincerest condolences and may God provide comfort to you and your family.
John Harrison
July 9, 2013
We are very saddened to here of Mark's passing. We had the honor of having him as a lawyer and friend. He was honest and caring person. He will be truly missed.
Joe & Barb Gesek
July 9, 2013
I am shocked and saddened to hear of the passing of Mark. As a fellow pilot of small airplanes we talked about flying a lot. And as somebody who worked with him, Mark truly had a terrific personality and the right judicial temperament. He will be missed by all that knew him.
David Cooper
July 9, 2013
My most sincere condolences to my dearest friends Amy and Mary and to their mother, Anne. I am deeply sorry for your loss and grateful that you have each other for support. What a wonderful, wonderful father you have. He loves you so much and will be fondly remembered, always.
Jennie Fauls
July 9, 2013
My thoughts and prayers are with your family during this extremely difficult time.
Christina Johnston
July 9, 2013

My deepest sympathies go out to you and your family. It was a pleasure to work with him for so many years. Words cannot express my sorrow. I'll keep you and your family in my prayers.

Former workman's comp employee,

Leona Rowker
Leona Rowker
July 9, 2013
I am very saddened by this sudden and untimely death. Mark was a great guy, a great helpful lawyer, and a great neighbor. He will be greatly missed. My heart goes out to Anne and his daughters. Wagiha Taylor
July 9, 2013
I was privileged to meet Mark on only one occasion and I will never forget how cool he was. RIP sir.
Darrell Karalunas
July 9, 2013
My sincerest sympathy, Anne. He is in many of my memories of growing up in the Back Mountain. A great friend that I regret not staying in touch with. May God take care of him now.
Donald Lawson
July 9, 2013
Mark was the first person I got to meet when I started joining in on the SMR's. He was such a great guy and will be missed. I'm so sorry for your loss; your family is in my thoughts.
Jeremy Klapac
July 9, 2013

The enthusiasm Mark displayed will be greatly missed by all. So sorry for your loss. He will always be remembered for his kind helpful nature.
Mary Stabinsky
July 9, 2013
I had the honor and privilege of appearing in front of Mark in Workers Compensation cases. He was always caring, fair and treated everyone with respect. I happened to be running at Harvey's Lake on Sunday morning wearing my Around Town Bike jersey and when he past me he called out, "you should be on your bike"... he had the biggest smile on his face as he waved and finished by yelling "have a good morning" as he rode past surrounded by friends. That is the person I will remember forever.
Annie, my deepest condolences to you and your family.
July 9, 2013
I was very saddened to hear of Mark's sudden passing. He was always a fair judge, was always so compassionate when dealing with people, and so loved life. I enjoyed hearing the stories he told about his biking escapades. It is hard to believe that he is gone. At least he was doing something he loved, and he is in a wonderful place now, I have no doubt. God bless him and his family.
Sharon McGrail-Szabo
July 9, 2013
May the soul of Mark rest in peace, and may perpetual light shine upon him always and forever...amen. Remember, it's not goodbye forever, but rather just so long for now. Until we meet again, what an honor and privilege it was to know you and to serve you. My prayers will always be with you and yours.
Kenneth O'Hearn
July 9, 2013
Annie, Sorry for your loss... My sympathies go out to you and your family at this terribly sad and heartbreaking time...
Michele Howell
July 9, 2013
My heart goes out to you and your family, Mark's smile personality and gentleness will be greatly missed.
Scott Seeherman
July 9, 2013
Mark was a good person, and a good friend. He will be missed by many people, and on many levels. He will certainly be missed by me. Michael W. Simon III and Family
Michael W. Simon III
July 9, 2013
Dear Anne, Mary and Amy.Words can't describe the sorrow Bobby and I feel, We can't even begin to imagine what you are feeling. Mark was a special, wonderful friend. Every memory of him includes smiles and laughter. He had such a wonderful wit and smile. All our lives are fuller and more enriched because of Mark's and your friendship
Irene Wendoloski
July 9, 2013
To all of Mark's family: my sincerest sympathy. He will be very missed as a most wonderful, kind, and knowledgeable judge.
Elaine Cook
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