THOMASTON - William A. Moskaluk, originally from Thomaston, died on Wednesday, Oct. 6 at an adult care home in Wilsonville, Ore. He was the husband of the late Loretta Robinson Moskaluk. Bill was born in Thomaston on June 1, 1924, son of the late Alexander and Maria Moskaluk.
A graduate of Thomaston High School and adept at riding motorcycles with his buddies from town, Mr. Moskaluk honorably served his country and was proud of his 30 years military career, which began with the U.S. Marine Corps in WWII, during which he saw combat in the South Pacific. After the war, he continued with the Army and then the U.S. Air Force. He owned a construction company with a partner he met during the Korean War, but gave it up when he joined the Air Force in 1956. During the Vietnam Ware era, he was stationed in Thailand. He stayed behind with a skeleton crew at Wheelus AFB in Tripoli, Libya, North Africa in 1967 during the "48 Hour War" between the Arab nation of Egypt and Israel. He retired at Edwards AFB, California and was honorably discharged from all three branches of the service.
He loved his family and friends scattered around the country celebrating with backyard barbecues and parties. Of particular sweetness was his association with the Sunset Harley Owners Group (HOGs) in Portland, Oregon, who among other things, gave him his last Harley ride last year, made him the guest of honor at their Christmas party and bestowed an associate membership accompanied with the honor of a Harley nickname of "Jarhead." He had a loving conversation, three weeks before his death, with his brother Michael Moskaluk in Connecticut and planned to call him again.
Bill is survived by two children, a son, William "Bud" and his wife Kadee Moskaluk of California, and a daughter, Linda and her husband Jerry Thatcher of Wilsonville, Ore.; and grandchildren Lauren Thatcher and Travis Olson, Michelle Lobsinger and Karen McEiver: and several nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his brothers Peter, Joseph, and John and Sisters Catherine, Anne, and Julie.
In the words of his daughter Linda – "From the responses I've had so far, I realize he touched more people than I had ever suspected and in ways that showed the true character of his kind soul. He was larger than life, sometimes gruff like some of the characters that John Wayne played, but with a sweetness that anyone saw after spending five minutes with him."
A memorial service was held in Wilsonville, Oreg. at Cornwell Colonial Chapel. A military funeral with honor guard, Patriot Guard Riders, 21 motorcycle salute from Sunset HOG's, and gun salute. Internment of Mr. Moskaluk's ashes was at Willamette National Cemetery next to his wife Loretta.
Published by Register Citizen from Nov. 1 to Nov. 2, 2010.