Friday, January 15, 2021

Skook News Obituaries: Friday, January 15th, 2021


Skook News Obituaries: January 15th, 2021

Obituaries published from the Schuylkill County area.


Thomas Joseph Banditelli, Sr.
, 77, of Tamaqua, PA died on Thursday, January 14, 2021 in Bethlehem, PA. He was the husband of Carol L. (nee Epler) Banditelli to whom he was married 53 years. 

Born in Coaldale, PA on February 8, 1943, Tom was a son of the late A. Joseph and Susan A. (nee Sincavage) Banditelli. A 1960 graduate of Tamaqua High School, he served in the Air Force where he was a member of the Air Force Band. Tom is well known as the owner of Tom’s Auto Body and Marine which he has operated for 57 years. He was the recipient of the 2014 Tamaqua Citizenship Award and the 2014 Schuylkill County Outdoor Personality of the Year Award. A large benefactor of many Tamaqua area organizations, Tom was a longtime chamber member and board member; president of the Owl Creek Reservoir Commission; member of the American Legion, Elks, and Lions Club; and former president of the Tamaqua Italian Club. An avid fisherman, he loved fishing on the St. Lawrence River and going to Canada, was active in the Bass Club, and coordinated annual Fishing Derbies. Tom had been a member of the band “Angie and the Strangers”. He was a member of The Parish of St. John XXIII, Tamaqua. 

In addition to his wife Carol, Tom is survived by son, Tom J. Banditelli, Jr. and his wife Roxanne and their children Jacob and Dominick of Owl Creek; brothers, Robert Banditelli and his wife Nancy of Tamaqua and Albert Banditelli and his wife Isabelle of Tamaqua; and several nephews and nieces. 

He was predeceased by a son Christopher M. Banditelli who died in 2013. 

Services are private at the convenience of the family. In lieu of flowers, memorials in Tom’s name may be made to the Owl Creek Reservoir Commission, c/o Tamaqua Borough, 320 East Broad Street, Tamaqua, PA 18252. Online condolences may be made at 

Arrangements are being handled by the Zizelmann-Gulla Funeral Home and Cremation Services, Inc., Tamaqua.


Katherine M. LaFrance, 37 years of age, of Mary D, Pennsylvania died suddenly on Wednesday, January 13, 2021, at St. Luke's Miners Memorial in Coaldale, Pennsylvania.

Born Friday, February 4, 1983, she was the daughter of Michael LaFrance and Caroline (Wilson) LaFrance. In addition to her parents she is survived by; maternal grandmother, Helen C. (Hoppes) Wilson; fiancé, Joseph Buchinsky.

Private arrangements entrusted to the Robert S. Nester Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Inc. of 2066 West Penn Pike New Ringgold, Pennsylvania 17960. (570) 386-5884

online condolences may be expressed by visiting


Florence C. Farber
, 68 years of age, of 222 East Broad Street Tamaqua, Pennsylvania died on Thursday, January 14, 2021, at Geisinger St. Luke's Hospital in Orwigsburg, Pennsylvania.

Born Wednesday, December 10, 1952 in Pottsville, Pennsylvania she was the daughter of the late Edward Bartlett, and Florence (Sheriff) Bartlett - Kelbach. Florence's was also predeceased by; her husband, Gary F. Farber, Sr.; son Gary F. Farber, Jr.; brother, Edward Bartlett, Jr.; step father, Leo Kelbach.

Surviving are daughters, Christine F. Farber of Summit Hill, Tammy L. Helfrich of Hazleton; caregiver, Kim Jones of Tamaqua.

Florence was a babysitter for many families, and enjoyed doing puzzles. Flo, was appreciative and kind to all who cared for her.

Private arrangements entrusted to the E. Franklin Griffiths Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Inc. of 655 East Broad Street Tamaqua, Pennsylvania 18252. (570) 668-2550

Interment Odd Fellows Cemetery Tamaqua, Pennsylvania.

Online condolences may be made to the family at


Lorraine Magdalene Kraft, 84 years of age, of West Ruddle Street Coaldale, Pennsylvania passed away on Thursday, January 14, 2021, at Weatherwood Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Weatherly, Pennsylvania.

Born Saturday, November 14, 1936 the daughter of the late William, and Eva Wagner. Lorraine was also predeceased by her first husband, Russell Bauder; second husband, Edward Kraft; sons, Russell, Charles, and Daniel Bauder; sister, Beatrice Wagner, and Margaret Wagner; brother, William Wagner.

Surviving are daughter, Patricia E. Werner wife of Barry of Coaldale; 8 grandchildren; 6 great grandchildren.

A graduate of Northampton High School, Lorraine was a longtime secretary for B. Braun Medical Inc. of the Lehigh Valley.

Private funeral arrangements entrusted to the E. Franklin Griffiths Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Inc. of 655 East broad Street Tamaqua, Pennsylvania 18252. (570) 668-2550

Online condolences may be made to the family at


Jean E. Hartz
, widow of Thomas H. Hartz, Sr. of Market Street Tamaqua, passed away peacefully Thursday, January 14, 2021, at home while in the loving care of her family at 81 years of age.

Born Thursday, August 17, 1939 in Coaldale, Pennsylvania the daughter of the late Benjamin, and Bessie Mae (Truett) Walters. Jean was also predeceased by; son, Rodney Hartz; step-son, John Hartz; sisters, Doris Fisher, Kathleen Plasko, Margaret O'Brien; brothers, Robert, Francis, Joseph, and Benjamin Walters.

A 1958 graduate of Tamaqua High School, Jean was a member of Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church of Tamaqua. Jean had worked for the Atlas Powder Co. of Reynolds, Kutcher's TV & Appliances, and at Rite Aide in Tamaqua. She was a member of the Citizens Fire Co. Aux., and was Den Mother for her sons Cub Scout Troop, Pack 776. Never one to hesitate when there was a trip to the Casino, or the opportunity to spend time with her family at the beach. Jean's presence on her front porch will be missed by all who passed her home.

Surviving are sons, Thomas H. Hartz, Jr. and his wife Kathy, Jeffrey S. Hartz and his wife Mary, Jason G. Hartz and his wife Jamie all of Tamaqua; daughter, Jennifer Hartz and her wife Amy of Hamburg; 7 grand children; 3 great grandchildren; parallel family, Andrea "Candy" Matukonis and her husband Peter of Tamaqua, Lynn Ann Navratil and her husband Frank of Delano, Michael Hartz and his wife Debbie of Tamaqua. Many nieces and nephews also survive Jean.

Private arrangements entrusted to the E. Franklin Griffiths Funeral Home & Cremation Services, Inc. of 655 East Broad Street Tamaqua, Pennsylvania 18252. (570) 668-2550

Interment Sky-View Memorial Park Tamaqua, Pennsylvania.

Memorials in Jeans name to:
Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church
109 North Greenwood Street
Tamaqua, Pennsylvania 18252

Online condolences or a fond memory of Jean can be made to the family at


Rita E. (Stanczyk) Karlavage
, 65 of Shenandoah passed away on Tuesday, December 15, 2020 in Melbourne, Florida.

Born in Shenandoah on July 10, 1955, she was a daughter of the late John and Eleanor (Nedinsky) Stanczyk.

She was a 1973 graduate of Shenandoah Valley High School.

Rita retired from the Rite Aid in Shenandoah. Earlier she worked at the Morgan Knitting Mills, Hometown, McCann School of Business, Mahanoy City and the Bargain Anney, Shenandoah.

Surviving are her daughter, Michele Karlavage; two sons, Chad Karlavage and Terry Karlavage; her significant other, Paul Leger; three grandchildren, Daishon, Kennedy & Lexus; two sisters, Lisa Breznik and Susan Schegan; one brother, John Stanczyk; nieces, nephews, cousins and many friends.

Preceding her in death in addition to her parents were her brother, Dennis Stanczyk and her sister, Theresa Santella.

Religious services will be held on Saturday, January 16, 2021 at 10:30 am at Walukiewicz-Oravitz Fell Funeral Home, 132 S. Jardin St., Shenandoah. Rev. Dr. John Reid will officiate. Interment will follow in Sky-View Memorial Park, Hometown at 11:30 am. A visitation will be held on Saturday morning from 9:00 am until 10:30 am at the funeral home. All state and federal COVID-19 guidelines and regulations will be observed; masks and social distancing will be required.

Expressions of sympathy can be made to the World War II Memorial c/o Trust for the National Mall, 1300 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Suite 370, Washington, DC 20004 or the Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758516, Topeka, Kansas 66675-8516.

Walukiewicz-Oravitz Fell Funeral Home, Shenandoah is in charge of the arrangements.


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