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Louis Durkac

1928 - 2019
Louis Durkac Obituary
(News story) Louis Durkac, who served in the Army during World War II, spent more than four decades working at Libbey-Owens-Ford Glass Company, and served on Rossford City Council, died Sept. 4 at Hospice of Northwest Ohio in Perrysburg. He was 91.

Mr. Durkac died following complications from an infection in his leg, according to daughter Martina Durkac. Ms. Durkac described her father as kind and adventurous.

"I thought he was very funny and had a good sense of humor," Ms. Durkac said. "He was a great family man who loved his wife and kids."

Mr. Durkac was born Aug. 3, 1928 in Blairsville, Penn., to Louis and Mary Durkac. His family moved to Rossford when he was a child to be closer to relatives, and he attended Rossford High School.

He joined the Army during World War II and served as an apprentice to a cartographer in the South Pacific. Mr. Durkac didn't talk much about the war, but did share a story with Ms. Durkac that turned out far better than anticipated.

Mr. Durkac and his unit were on an island conducting geologic research when they heard rustling coming from a brush pile. Japanese soldiers came running out armed with machine guns. Mr. Durkac and the other U.S. soldiers were only carrying knives.

"Only one soldier spoke Japanese so they communicated with these men," Ms. Durkac said. "It turned out they were just curious because they saw Americans. They said, 'We would like to play baseball,' so my dad and the American soldiers said that's fine. They made some makeshift bases and played baseball with the soldiers."

After the war, Mr. Durkac met his wife Irene and the couple married Sept. 6, 1952. He spent his adult life in Rossford with his family and working at Libbey-Owens-Ford as a machinist.

He also served 18 years on the Rossford plan commission before serving four years on city council before being defeated in the November, 1997, election by 14 votes. Soon after, another council member stepped down and Mr. Durkac was appointed by council to serve for the rest of his term.

Mr. Durkac was also an active member of All Saints Catholic Church.

"He was a hard worker and he loved his children an awful lot," his wife said. "It was a small community and people stuck together. He had a lot of very good friends here."

Mr. Durkac had several longtime friends at the glass company. Daughter Peggy Golden said it was a steady job and allowed him to provide for his large family.

"As a kid, he worked swing shifts," Mrs. Golden said. "When he was on midnights and would come home, he'd bring us all our favorite doughnut from the bakery. He was a hard worker."

Mr. Durkac and his wife enjoyed traveling the country in their motorhome with their dog Pepper. They visited nearly every state and especially enjoyed trips to Myrtle Beach, S.C., and Alaska.

Ms. Durkac said one of her parents' last big adventures together was riding a train in California from San Diego to San Francisco.

Mr. Durkac is survived by his wife, Irene; daughters Peggy Golden and Martina Durkac; sons Louis, Steven, and Douglas Durkac; and 11 grandchildren.

Visitation is scheduled for Monday at Sujkowski-Walker Funeral Home in Rossford from 2-8 p.m. Funeral services will commence Tuesday at All Saints Catholic at 9 a.m.

Memorial contributions may be made to All Saints Catholic or Hospice of Northwest Ohio.

This is a news story by Jay Skebba. Contact him at [email protected] or 419-724-9414.
Published in The Blade on Sept. 9, 2019
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