Francis X. Gurekovich, 81, Tyrone, died Monday at his residence.
He was born in Sinking Valley, son of the late Imbro and Maria (Murloch) Gjurekovic. He married Gail D. Miller on July 24, 1953, at Holy Cross Catholic Church, Buffalo, N.Y., and she died Aug. 4, 2004, after 51 years of marriage.
Surviving are four sons: Michael E. and wife, Christine, of Bald Eagle, Francis E. Jr. and wife, Darcy, of Tyrone, Christopher S. and wife, Jana, of Tyrone and Karl D. and wife, Kimberly, of Tyrone; two daughters: Patricia A. Yost and husband, Joseph, of Bedford and Karen Gurekovich of Tyrone; 12 grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren; and a brother, George and wife, Sunny, of Reno, Nev.
He was preceded in death by a daughter, Mary Alice; a grandson, Jonathan F.; six sisters: Barbara, Anna, Caroline, Sally, Helen and Bernadine; and six brothers: Michael, Steve, Ambrose, John, Joe and Michael J.
Francis was a U.S. Army veteran of the Korean War, serving as a sergeant second class in the 1st Army Division, 16th Infantry, in Germany from June 1950 to February 1953. He retired from Chicago Rivet & Machine Co. on March 4, 1994, as a header operator after 40 years service, where he served two years as the president of the social club. He was an active member of St. Matthew Catholic Church, serving as an usher and Eucharistic minister.
Francis was a fourth-degree member of the Knights of Columbus, St. Gregory Council 1218; past member, past president and cook for the Sportsvue Hunting Club for 28 years; past commander of the American Legion in 1969; instructor for the Sons of The American Legion, Tyrone, for three years; and president of the Clubmen Association in 1967. In addition, he was a member of the Hookies Fire Company, Tyrone, and the NRA and a 60-year member of the Tyrone American Legion. He coached Teener League baseball in Tyrone in 1972.
Francis loved his church and family and was an avid hunter and fisherman. He was proud of his role in recruiting many men to join the Knights of Columbus and was recently presented with a plaque for Knight of the Year for 2013.
Friends will be received from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2013, at Feller Memorial Home, Tyrone, where the Knights of Columbus will have a recitation of the Rosary at 7:30 p.m. A funeral Mass will be celebrated at noon Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013, at St. Matthew Church, Father Jozef Kovacik as celebrant. Interment with veteran's honors accorded by the Tyrone Honor Guard will follow at Oak Grove Cemetery.
Memorial gifts may be made to the St. Matthew Church Bell Fund, 1105 Cameron Ave., Tyrone, PA 16686.