Kevin Ray Chojczak
KEVIN RAY CHOJCZAK SEPT 11, 1969 - DEC 23,2010 Kevin, friend and comrade to so many in the struggle for freedom and justice has died. Kevin was born in San Francisco, and lived for seven years in Monterey before moving with his family to Turlock. After graduating from Turlock High School, he moved to San Francisco and was graduated with a bachelor of arts in anthropology from SFSU. There he began his affiliation with the International Socialist Organization to which he dedicated his talents to the struggles of the working class in the United States. Kevin was an avid reader of labor history, political economy and used this knowledge in the fight for social change. He was a steadfast worker, organizer, and writer. He was also a talented guitarist. He lived for a year in Argentina teaching English and traveled to Central America and Mexico. Over the years, Kevin was active in the human rights struggles of Salvadorans, immigrant rights and against the wars. In recent years, he lent his extraordinary gifts of mentorship and teaching as a Special Education paraprofessional. He was a forceful advocate for educators as a member of the Educators for a Democratic Union in San Francisco. Kevin was generous and thoughtful and always there for everyone. Kevin is proceded in death by his father Zbigniew Adam Chojczak. He was a loving uncle to Isaac and Salina. He is survived by his mother Diana, sister Danusia Chojczak Harp, grandmothers Alice Salazar and Maria Chojczak, his uncle David Saldana, and many other uncles, aunts, and cousins. He will be remembered forever and serve as an inspiration to many for his kindness and passionate concern for others. Family and friends are invited to his mother's residence to gather for a remembrance on Wed 12/29 at 1pm. Please share your memories and condolences at www.modbee.com/obituaries www.turlockmemorialpark.com
Published by Modesto Bee from Dec. 29 to Dec. 30, 2010.
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57 Entries
I try to remember you on your birthday, which was 3 days after mine, rather than this bad day. You were everything positive with the world and you could talk/relate to just about anyone. I Just donated in your name to Democracy Now! Miss you buddy!
-k
kenny
Friend
December 31, 2020
I’ll always remember your big genuine smile, the way you played air drums to any Van Halen song that came on. For a long time I really thought you were a drummer. Although you may be gone, you are not forgotten ole friend.
Juan Hernandez
Friend
December 24, 2020
i miss our dialogue about society and u should still be here but in my mind i am with u kevin and miss ur view of life your bro john
September 25, 2012
Diana, Danusia and family,
I was deeply saddened to learn today of Kevin's passing. We hadn't spoken in 20 years as we had amicably ended our young love affair and I am happily married and busy raising two girls. But, I was always hoping he was happy and wondered what he was doing. I remember his love for music, art and his old VW bug that we picked up together near Grass Valley. I loved his warm smile. I want you to know that I cherish the fun memories that we had together and I treasure the warm welcome I was given by your family. Our trip to Poland was a once in a lifetime experience. Your family introduced me to a whole new way of being. I remember the good food and encouraging conversations about our college studies. Thank you for welcoming me into your life. My heart reaches out to you at this time. May you find peace in these challenging times.
Sherry (Smith) Phillips
April 27, 2011
I don't think any amount of time is going to fill the space in my heart since you left. I think about you and the good times we shared nearly every day, and I miss you dearly. Even though you are gone, I will try my best to carry on your positive energy, influence, and legacy in every way I can. I love you bro.
Brittnell Anderson
March 23, 2011
Diana and Danusia and family: What a treasure our family had in Kevin. I am so proud of his courage to live his convictions and to hear of how hard he worked and fought for others. I don't think anyone else in our family has had such an impact on so many lives the way Kevin did. His life was way too short, in our opinion, but it appears that in the short time he was here he touched so many lives, and left an influence on so many, that he will live on though he may not be physically here. I hope there is some way that he knows, even now, how very proud we are that he was ours.
Hilda Miranda
January 28, 2011
Growing up down the street from kevin`s family we ran around playing ditch with the other kids. Playing legos, starwars. He painted a few of my hotwheel cars for me. He always had a smile on his face. He was the kid that you knew would grow up to do big things. I will always have those memories. Kevin you will be missed. Peace
Gbae Hernandez
January 17, 2011
To Kevin's family please accept my heartfelt condolences. Kevin and I became friends when I lived in San Francisco. After I moved to Wisconsin, then Oregon, we stayed in touch by email and would meet at national conferences once a year. This past year we were in contact more, by telephone and personal visits. Kevin visited me in Portland last March on his way to visit family members in Washington. We met again in Oakland and San Francisco in July.It never ceased to amaze me how Kevin could be so efficient and competent, and yet so modest and unpretentious. I consider myself very fortunate and deeply honored to have shared Kevin's friendship. I shall miss him greatly.
Ken Morgan
January 17, 2011
Kevin,
I only knew you a little bit, and yet I really liked you. I liked your humble, friendly and tenacious personality. I got to know you through my participation at my school's Union Building Committee. You also came to visit me a few times in my classroom, always respectful, always with invitations to attend events and participate in social justice causes. We attended last March's rally together, and it was fun hanging out with you there. It was a privilege to have known you.
Suzann Baldwin
January 15, 2011
Kevin,

The Last Waltz

WinterLand, San Francisco,1969.

Smiles from the floor!
j b
January 11, 2011
May his legacy, and memory live forever. May his body and soul rest in peace. It was an honor working with such a kind person who embodied the revolutionary struggle and his ideas so kind heartedly, something many of us revolutionaries lack. He inspired many people and lived an honorable life. Rest in Peace, Kevin....-Jessica Sanchez
Jessica Sanchez
January 9, 2011
Kevin
You touched many lives. Last school year, I was privileged to know you better as a friend, have lunch together several times a week, and talk about people... and politics. You were always measured: you were marked by an incredible kindness and generousity of spirit. You always thought the best of folks---yet you always loved a good sharp political dispute and debate. I loved all those parts: when we could see and love people around us and yet fight vigorously KNOWING we loved and respected each other and shared socialist values and commitment, that arose from our life WITH people: friends, family, struggling folks met and embraced along the way.
I am saddened for me .... for you were to have returned to us in the Bay Area.... and I am saddened for you family, who lost a sweet and good brother, son and cousin...
You were and are a tresure: more gracious than I ever hope to be, yet also modest and playful in a way to lighten the hearts of those around you.
I am honored and blessed to have known you---and deeply saddened by your departure...
Tom EDminster
January 8, 2011
Sometimes when we lose comrades it feels like the light of the struggle might get a little dimmer, but I think Kevin moved us in a way that will make us all a little brighter in memory of him, because that is what he inspired in us all.
Amy Dorris-Peter
January 7, 2011
My first memory of Kevin is of us posting fliers on poles on Mission Street (something we're not allowed to do anymore) while building the huge anti-war demo in Feb of 2003. Like I was to hear from him many times later, he kindly asked that I walk on the side of his good ear, so he could listen to me better. :) As we were fliering, we discussed soldiers resistance in Vietnam, the inspiring role of working class people in ending wars and why we are the ones forced to fight them in the first place. I remember this conversation so vividly. With each word Kevin spoke, my convictions grew and my life changed. I was hungry for these ideas and Kevin was so thoughtful, and yet soft and passionate as he answered questions and responded to my thoughts. He was so easy a person to relate to. Both us came from similar backgrounds. We had the unique experience of growing up in working class towns in California. He wove the experience of our lives into politics and in turn, helped me learn marxist history.

This is the way I remember Kevin - a steady and passionate person who really listened and communicated to people with so, so, so much patience.

I can not think of one single bad memory of Kevin.

He was nervous giving public talks, like so many of us are, and it was just so endearing.

He loved and cared for his family so much, and I remember thinking how lucky he was that they in turn supported his commitment to the belief that this world can be a much better place to live and we must do something to make this happen.

Kevin you are already missed.

To Kevin's family, my heart and love goes out to you.

To all of us, may we follow in Kevin's footsteps and make new ones in his honor.
Ragina J
January 7, 2011
Kevin is a golden soul. I feel very fortunate to have worked with him in immigrant rights organizing and in our reform caucus in our union. I have missed him since he moved away from San Francisco and I feel very sad that I will not be seeing him again. As many have said he had a way of making you feel at ease. With him I knew I could ask any question regarding politics or history without feeling self-concious by revealing my ignorance. He gave so much to so many. Kevin presente!!!!
Jessica Hobbs
January 6, 2011
Kevin had what Emma Goldman called "the capacity to enter into the lives of others." His understanding of other people transcended the bounds of his own experience and identity -- and his powerful desire for a just and humane society rendered the distinction between personal and professional irrelevant. He worked as a one-on-one assistant with an autistic student in my 9th grade English class last year, and it's impossible to imagine someone approaching the job with more interest, energy, and commitment. He spent countless hours outside his paid work day creating modified lessons, and he voluntarily took on extra responsibilities to assist other special needs students beyond those he was hired to work with.

He worked hard because he believed in his work -- which was to make school and the life of the mind accessible to the underdogs and the marginalized young people so often ignored and even abused by the system. The students and fellow educators he inspired and helped will always remember4 him as a mensch among mensches. The world needed him, and he will certainly be missed.
Paul Massi-Cameli
January 6, 2011
I remember Kevin as extremely generous and helpful to me in the times when I was in San Francisco to attend political conferences. I also remember his intellectual curiosity and his way of taking a penetrating look at any issue, and his selfless genuineness.

He will be greatly missed!
Sarah Knopp
January 5, 2011
Kevin was one of those rare people who hadn't become jaded or pessimistic about social causes and making a change in society, his zeal was contageous. Kevin was also such a warm, thoughtful person. I feel grateful that I was able to spend a year working with him at Lincoln. He will be sorely missed.
Erika Ray
January 4, 2011
I had the privilege of working with Kevin at many activist conferences, where he always helped provide Spanish translation for attendees. I remember some great conversations with him about the movements for immigrant rights and to defend public education. What a warm, dedicated, and sincere person he was. You could tell the depth of his belief in social justice, and that he loved being involved in the struggle for change. I am so sad to hear of his passing. He made a great contribution in his short time with us.
Gillian Russom
January 4, 2011
Kevin was a great individual, a wonderful person an excellent advocate and a talented paraprofessional. He worked with me last year and I was trying to get him come back to Lincoln. I am deeply saddened by his passing. He will be greatly missed.
Betsy Ryan Dalpino (San Francisco)
Betsy Ryan Dalpino
January 4, 2011
Kevin made me feel at ease and made me feel like the work I was doing in and out of the classroom was important.
He was fully devoted to his work as a paraprofessional and organizer. He continues to inspire me to treat people with respect, regardless of political affiliation. I am deeply saddened by the news of his death. I will miss him.
Aaron Neimark
January 4, 2011
Kevin was such a real person.

He was always forthright and down to earth; eminently approachable. He always took the time to listen carefully and weigh in sincerely to share a helpful perspective.

He was able to maintain a hopeful optimism and humor, while being very pragmatic and realistic.

He was in some sense an ideal human being, the type of person you hope you could be yourself.

He was intellectually curious, a fierce revolutionary, and was always striving to grow and improve.

He was true and humble and maintained a dignity and pride that those of us who knew him will do well to carry forth in his memory.

Thank you, Kevin, for touching my life and being a tremendous role model.
David Alt
January 4, 2011
He was always listening, always listening, and so I like to imagine that he is listening now. It does give me some small comfort to imagine that Kevin can hear all these amazing words being written, whispered and confessed about him - and that he knows how much he is loved. Oh Kevin, I hear your unmistakable laugh and see your unmistakable smile. I miss you terribly. You worked with an application of steady will to bring justice and equality to this world. I admired you more than you could ever know.
aj
January 3, 2011
I had the pleasure to know and love Kevin as both a compassionate, sincere, inspirational friend who always put the needs of others in front of himself and as my comrade-in-arms, a steeled organizer with uncompromising principles. He had diverse/eclectic musical tastes and never failed to amaze me how he could relate to just about anyone. A true friend and a working class hero. I miss you Kevin.
Kenny Swain
January 3, 2011
I'm from Kevin's Turlock High School days. I remember Kevin as kind person, with a sense of humor, and teller of funny stories. I also have fond memories of skateboarding in front of Kevin's house, the church across the street and the bank nearby. He had great skills and always left me filled with envy when I watched him launch a skateboard ramp.

I've read some of other folks comments on here and it does not surprise me to find such kind words about him and I am glad to know he had found something he was so passionate about in life, it seems as though he live a good one. Rest in Peace, Kevin and my very best goes out to your family
Larry Mills
January 3, 2011
I was lucky enough to live in the Bay Area and organize with Kevin for a number of years. He was always kind, patient and brilliant. And he helped build my confidence at moments when i really needed it - i wish i could thank him for that, because i still carry it with me. I'm so sad that i won't get to see him again. He had such a warm way about him and he will be greatly missed. I'd like to send my deepest sympathies to his family and loved ones.
Lichi D'Amelio
January 3, 2011
I am shocked and misting. Kevin came across as soft-spokenly fierce and dependable. And so young to have died.
Avery Wear
January 3, 2011
I would always look forward to seeing Kevin when I went to the Bay Area for some political event. Although I only knew him briefly, he always greeted me warmly and shared some time and words. He was the kind of person that would befriend you immediately and make it feel like you have always known each other. You don't ever forget genuine people like that, they become part of you.
Justin Akers Chacon
January 3, 2011
Kevin was a dear friend and comrade. He was kind and good and honest, binding all that was true in his character together with an icy resolve that withstood the hottest sun. He was the sort of person who gives you hope for humanity and a men in whose hands you would trustingly place your future.

y del porvenir
de las horas amargas
y la dicha de poder vivir
laborando el comienzo de una historia
sin saber
el fin

Kevin made that possible. It will be harder without him.
Todd Chretien
January 3, 2011
I just read of Kevin's passing at socialistworker.org and am so terribly saddened for his family, friends and all those whose lives were touched by such a gentle guy. I didn't know Kevin well, but he was always anxious to talk with me after a meeting to pursue a question or just expand on what was said. He struck me as curious, kind and devoted to ideas of struggle and the people he fought alongside. What a loss his death is to all of us.
Sherry Wolf
January 3, 2011
I only saw Kevin once or twice a year at the national conferences. But even in such a short window of time, I deeply appreciated his serious approach to fighting for immigrants' rights, social justice and keeping our collective history of struggle alive and relevant. So dedicated, so vibrant in his work for socialist politics. I will miss his contributions and gentle smile every year. My sincere condolences to his family.
Bridget Broderick
January 3, 2011
I had the great fortune of meeting Kevin in Oakland at last year's Socialism Conference. For a few days that July, I was witness to Kevin's breath and depth of knowledge, his empathy for others and his sincere convictions for a better world. Although my time with Kevin was brief, he made an impression on me that lasts to this day.

This world was better because of Kevin.
Nestor Casas
January 3, 2011
It was special to have a moment to talk with Kevin when he and I worked together, to hear his calm reflections and questions on everything from his students to the overall society. We never had enough of those moments. Kevin combined a sense of compassion with a deep commitment to social justice. The two were linked for him; he really exemplified the words of Che Guevara that the true revolutionary is guided by a great feeling of love. Kevin constantly learned more as an educator so he could better serve his students academically and emotionally, but he also knew that in order for those students to truly be served, the whole system in this country needed to change. Though holding that larger picture as a guide, Kevin always held people as individuals within his heart. When my mom was very ill and then died, Kevin consistently reached out to me to offer understanding and support. It is hard to imagine a world without Kevin’s kindness and devotion to change, hard to imagine not running into him on a picket line and his face lighting up with warmth and genuine interest as he asked how I was.
My heart and condolences go out to Kevin’s family and close friends. Know that there are many who mourn with you. We will all have to hold that special part of Kevin in us as we continue the struggle for justice that framed his world.
Deni Asnis
January 2, 2011
While Kevin and I didn't communicate as much these last few years, I considered Kevin to be one of my few, good friends. I met Kevin around ten years ago doing social justice work. I was young, inexperienced and temperamental. Kevin would help keep me grounded and positive. We bonded pretty quickly, since we were both Chicanos from the valley, but also because of his immense patience, ability to listen and maturity. It was obvious he loved people, especially his family. So, I wasn't surprised at all when he called me to tell me that he was moving to the valley to be closer to them. I will greatly miss Kevin's friendship and political commitment. He was a real inspiration and someone to this day I try to emulate. And to the family, my deepest condolences.
Mike Estrada
January 2, 2011
I am grateful for knowing you and have had the chance to work with you, if only for a brief time. I will always appreciate and respect you.
chris
January 2, 2011
While Kevin and I communicated less these last few years, I always considered him one of my few good friends. I first met Kevin around ten years ago doing global justice work. I was inexperienced, young and temperamental. Kevin would help keep me grounded with his patience, seriousness and willingness to listen to me when I felt nobody else would. And he obviously cared immensely about people, especially his family. I wasn't surprised at all when he called to tell me he was moving to the valley to be closer to family. I'll miss Kevin greatly and, to the family, my deepest condolences.
Mike Estrada
January 2, 2011
Kevin's quiet and steady presence will be sorely missed. His caring and commitment to social justice will continue to inspire me for a long time. Deep shared condolences to his family.
Rose Berryessa
January 1, 2011
He was a dedicated and warm person who genuinely wanted equality and justice for all. I was disappointed in August when I found out that he had moved and no longer worked for the S.F. Unified School District. Although I am saddened now that we have found out the terrible news of the accident, I will remember Kevin fondly. He truly will be missed. I am so sorry for your and our loss.
Lisa Gutierrez Guzmán
January 1, 2011
Kevin's light will continue with us in our hearts and minds as we move forward to shape a just and better world for our students and beyond. We love you Kevin. My condolences to Kevin's family.
Magdalena De Guzman
January 1, 2011
This was such shocking and sad news to hear. He was such a warm and thoughtful presence that it is difficult to really imagine his absence. Kevin will be missed by all those who knew him.
Steven Damewood
December 31, 2010
We will miss you Kevin, always genuine and thoughtful. I would have liked to know you better. My deep condolences to all Kevin's family, friends and comrades.
Jean Whittlesey
December 31, 2010
What a tragic loss. Kevin was a great guy, always willing to to a favor or lend a hand, and a committed fighter for social justice and a better world. He will be missed.
Phil Gasper
December 30, 2010
Kevin was such a wonderful person, and although I didn't know him as well as I would have liked, every interaction and conversation with Kevin was blessed. He was such a kind person. What I remember most is how Kevin would listen to you, a skill that is sorely lacking these days. Kevin was also a great comrade in the struggle for social justice in education. I, and I know many, many others will miss Kevin.
Karen Zapata
December 30, 2010
You will be missed my brother.
Martin Richter
December 30, 2010
Diana and Danusia,
Nothing can be said to ease the sorrow that you feel, we were sadden to read of the loss of Kevin. Those who have given of themselves to others will live forever in every single heart they have touched. Take each day slowly and find happiness in the little things.
Thinking of you,
Diane Barcellos
Mary Barcellos
December 30, 2010
Kevin,

When many seem weary and their road is slow, you fought for their struggle. No matter if we hiked, walked, or sat and took a minute to eat the struggle of the people was always in the forefront.

Your passion for social justice was so infectious. You even lent your time the conferences for social justice that I asked you to go to. Your words, facial expressions, and beautiful soul will be etched in our minds forever. The kind of change you evoked was heavy and the struggles long but you never wavered in any of your efforts. You described your fight for S.F. school cuts and it made me realize that people really do care the way they should. I could see the diligence and the sincerity within your hand gestures as you described those days.

All things meant something to you no matter how little. I remember how happy you were over flaming red trees that nature showed us in the fall, dancing in the living room, or with the breakthroughs you made in your classroom from day to day, "Today was a good day, and classes went smoothly, new bonding with students."

You said to me one time, “You are such a good friend to your friends”, but I remember immediately thinking…… what an incredible friend you are and how you really appreciated all that your friends brought to your life. You loved them all beyond words! Your family meant the world to you too! I remember how you described the strong men that helped shape and mold you into the person you are today. You loved your Dad and Mom beyond words. Those plastic bottles you collected for your nephew to build a boat showed how much you cared.

Though you were in our lives for but a brief second, you touched our lives forever. My daughters and I will forever appreciate and cherish all the memoires we have. The girls miss you immensely and are so grateful for our trip to the Art Institute in S.F. Thank you for the books you gave me and the trip to the bookstore in Midtown. I will cherish them forever. I will continue with the struggle as I did before I met you, but now with much more tenacity having seen your passion.

Solidarity forever! And thank you for everything you did for the world.
Launa Ramirez
December 30, 2010
Kevin, you were truly a wonderful person and a generous comrade. I regret that we only knew each other for such a brief time. My deepest condolences to your family and loved ones.
Snehal Shingavi
December 30, 2010
Kevin had a heart and a mind of gold. It was a pleasure to organize alongside him. His loss will be deeply felt among so many he made an impact on.
Ashley Simmons
December 30, 2010
Kevin, you were one of the greatest cousin that i have had. I will all ways miss you.We will never stop thinking about you.even tho that i hardly got to see you i will all ways remember you.
Kayla Burkett
December 30, 2010
Some words keep coming up when I think of Kevin, words like "good", "kind" and "warm-hearted" - words that sound quaint and old fashioned in today's world full of injustice. It is the world that is old fashioned though, Kevin was a person ahead of his time, a living example that another world is possible. Kevin's dignified ways provided a weight to the struggles for justice he was so deeply involved with. When Kevin spoke in a meeting it was always considered and measured, his passion for social change was metered by the understanding of the scale and import of the tasks ahead. Around Kevin I felt assured that I was in the right place doing the right thing, even as we made some mistakes on the way, with Kevin there I knew we were on the right path. Life was better with Kevin around, his generous smiles and friendly back pats accompanied his dedication to justice making him the best kind of a comrade - a friend! Kevin you will be sorely missed and always loved.
Josh On
December 30, 2010
I only knew Kevin as a boy growing up in Turlock. I can't help but smile when thinking of the games we played or the worlds we created playing with cars or legos. My thoughts and prayers are with Kevin's family at this time.
Ed Queen
December 29, 2010
kevin - i am so saddened that we didnt get to see each other before you left. i travelled, and assumed that you would always be there when i returned. you were so dedicated, so consistent. i remember your voice so clearly - your eyes, and your hand gestures, your hair. you talked of the 'level of struggle', and how it is so low and demoralizing and disorienting to many. but you knew it would not always be this way. death is never easy, but we all will die. this makes it easier. its living thats hard. thank you kevin for your patience, and for what you gave as an example to those of us who marched shoulder to shoulder with you. thank you for your compassion and understanding, your clarity and your modesty. we will never forget you dear friend, dear comrade.

to the chojczak family - i can say little to comfort you from this enormous loss. just know that kevin touched many who knew him, and many many more who didn't but on whose behalf he struggled for. this world is cruel and unjust no doubt. but it is people like kevin who made it a possibility to be better. he was the salt of this earth, and there can be only pride in that
Toufic Haddad
December 29, 2010
It was a pleasure and a privilege to have Kevin in my life through his political activism, and I will miss him beyond words. My condolences go to his family, who I know mattered greatly to him.
Deborah Goldsmith
December 29, 2010
Kevin you are in our prayers and we will miss you very much. You will always be remembered as such a kind cousin. I love you always God Bless.
Blanca Cardona
December 29, 2010
Each time I had the opportunity to talk with Kevin I was always struck by what an gentle soul he was, but yet had an extreme passion for the things he cared about. He was bright and always genuine. Danusia shared such great stories of Kevin. I know he will be remembered often as a wonderful son, brother, uncle and friend. My thoughts are with you.
Joni Green
December 29, 2010
Each time I had the opportunity to talk with Kevin I was always struck by what a gentle soul he was but seemed to have an extreme passion for the things he cared about. He was bright and always genuine. Danusia always told such great stories of Kevin. I know he will be remembered often as a wonderful friend, brother, son and uncle. My thoughts are with you.
Joni Green
December 29, 2010
My thought and prayers are with the family.
Doug Dodge
December 29, 2010
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