Saturday, January 15, 2022

Schuylkill County Obituaries for Saturday, January 15th, 2022


Skook News Obituaries: January 15th, 2022

Obituaries published from the Schuylkill County area.


Julia Holige, 94, of Black Heath, Cass Township, passed away on Friday at Lehigh Valley Hospital, Schuylkill – East.

Born on February 26,1927 in Jonestown, Cass Township, she was a daughter of the late John and Mary (nee Hutsko) Hutsko. She was a 1945 graduate of Cass Township High School

She was a member of St. Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic Church, Minersville. She was also a member of ILGWU, having been employed by Jackson Blouse, Primrose.

An avid sports fan, she enjoyed following Eagles and Penn State football, as well as Phillies baseball and Villanova basketball.

She was preceded in death by her husband of 43 years, John Holige, in 1990; six siblings, Michael, John, George and Nicholas Hutsko, Michael Molocznik and Anna Cutler.

Julia is survived by three daughters, Diane Somers (spouse, William), Pottsville, Mary Jean Allen, Black Heath, and Carol Sternick (spouse, Joseph), Black Heath; five grandchildren, Robyn Smith (grandson-in-law, Brandon Smith), Ryan Allen (spouse, Lauren), Lindsay Allen (partner, Dylan Alexander), Jerry Sternick (spouse, Anita), and Jason Sternick (spouse, Crystel); three great-grandchildren, Aurora Smith, Caitlin Sternick and Katie Sternick, as well as an expected great-grandchild, Baby Allen. She is also survived by three siblings, Mary Sullivan, Alvin, Texas, Dr. Joseph Hutsko, Coopersburg, and Francis Hutsko, Primrose, Cass Township; numerous nieces and nephews.

The family will accept visitors at Dutcavich Funeral Home, 200 Sunbury Street, Minersville, on Thursday from 6:00 A.M. Visitation will end promptly at 10:15 A.M. when procession will form. Requiem Divine Liturgy will be at 11:00 A.M. in St. Nicholas Church, 415 Front Street, Minersville. Interment will be on Friday at 10:30 A.M. in Indiantown Gap National Cemetery, Annville. The family prefers donations to St. Nicholas Church.


Tara Beth Smoot, 42, of Pottsville, passed away on Saturday at Lehigh Valley Hospital, Cedar Crest.

Born on July 10, 1979 in Pottsville, she was a daughter of the late Lester and Tara Picard Earhart. She was a 1997 graduate of Pottsville High School.

Tara is survived by a brother, Lester D. Earhart, Jr.; three sisters, Tanya Tompko (spouse, Edward), Janet Earhart (companion, Mel Pekarik), and Leslie Shapella (spouse, Michael); three nieces, Elizabeth, Tamara and Savana Tomko; a nephew, Michael Shapella; two great-nephews, Xander Devarie and Elijah Hunt.

Services will be scheduled at a later date.


Blanche J Harner
.age 90, of Sacramento, passed away Friday, January 14, 2022 at Penn State Milton S Hershey Medical Center.

She was born on Tuesday, March 3, 1931, in Mahanoy Twp, Northumberland County, a daughter of the late Gurney G Martz and the late Vera M (Klinger) Martz.

She was a 1949 graduate of the former Berrysburg High School.

Blanche had worked for the former Muskin Shoe Factory, Millersburg and had retired from Sterman Masser Potatoes, Sacramento.

She was a member of the Tri-Valley Bible Church, Valley View.

Blanche enjoyed spending time with her children and grandchildren. She also enjoyed reading and gospel music.

Her husband Lester R Harner passed away in 2011. She was also preceded in death by her parents; by two brothers, Harlan O Martz and Carl G Martz, and a sister, Mae A Mattern.

She is survived by a son, Lonnie E Harner and his wife Gail of Hegins; a daughter, Debra J Snyder and her husband Arthur of Halifax; three grandsons, Nathan "Nate" D Snyder of Halifax, Ethan D Harner of Hegins, and Cody D Snyder of Halifax; a granddaughter, Tanya J (Harner) Keiter of Hegins; three great grandsons, Trent A Keiter, Colton F Keiter, and Barrett R Harner all of Hegins; two great granddaughters, Annalise C Harner and Avonlea R Harner both of Hegins; and several nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be held at the Buffington-Reed Funeral Home, Valley View, on Saturday, January 22, 2022, at 11:00 am, with Rev. Dennis O'Brien officiating.

A viewing will be held from 10:00 am to 11:00 am on Saturday at the funeral home.

Burial will be in St. Andrew's United Methodist Cemetery, Sacramento.

Memorial contributions can be made to Tri-Valley Bible Church, PO Box 4, Sacramento PA 17968.


Bernadette M. Thomas, 87, of Frackville, and formerly of Shenandoah, passed away Friday morning in Frackville.

Born in Shenandoah on November 8th, 1934, she was the daughter of the late Thomas and Adele (Chiglinsky) Slusser.

Bernadette worked for many years in the garment industry as a seamstress before retiring.

She was very active in her community being one of the founders of S.A.Y.O. – Shenandoah Area Youth Organization, and very active in her church, the former St. George’s. She dedicated her life to her family being the matriarch of 5 generations of children. She was a member of the ILGWU.

Bernadette is survived by a daughter – Donna M. Gawrylik with her husband Joseph – Shenandoah, a sister Alberta (Bitsy) Howard – Palmyra, 3 grandchildren – Robyn with her husband Ron, Traci with her husband Christopher, and Jason with his wife Dana. 7 great-grandchildren, Daniel with his wife Holly, Jordyn, Major, Madisyn, Averi, Savannah, and Payton, 1 great-great grandchild, Mylee, along with several nieces and nephews, also her caregiver, Dorette Dixon.

Visitation for family and friends will be held on Friday, January 21st from 8 to 10am at the Oravitz Home for Funerals Inc, 40 N. Jardin St, Shenandoah. Scripture services will follow at 10am and will be officiated by Deacon Jack Quirk. Interment will immediately follow in the Our Lady of Lourdes Cemetery, Shenandoah Heights.


Edward J. Barowski
, 90, of Shenandoah Heights, passed away on Monday, January 10th, 2022 at Lehigh Valley Cedar Crest – Allentown.

Born in Shenandoah on March 7th, 1931, he was the son of the late Julius and Elsie (Dombrowski) Barowski.

Ed was a veteran of the United States Army. He worked many years in different avenues of work which include mining, driving, operating, and most recently did plumbing for the Pipe Fitters. Outside of work, he was a volunteer fireman, and was an avid hunter and fisherman traveling all across PA, including numerous trips to Erie and Canada. Ed will be remembered as a strong, adventurous man who was always the life of the party with his witty jokes and fantastic sense of humor. But most importantly, he was a great father, grandfather, and amazing husband. From the family – “Hug the ones you got a little tighter”

Besides his parents, he was preceded by his daughter, Joyce Barowski in 2021, a brother, Robert Barowski, and a sister, Joan Perrong.

He leaves behind his wife, Roberta (Wishnefsky) Barowski, a son, Mark Barowski with his wife Michelle – Walnutport, 1 sister, Dorothy Mattes – Ringtown, his grandchildren, Tyler Wierzalis, Tom Chatkiewicz, and Alexa Barowski, a great-granddaughter, Alyssa Abrachinsky, a great-great granddaughter, Hadley, and several nieces and nephews.

There are no services to be conducted at this time.


Edward R. "Ned" Hummel,
90 of Pottsville, died Saturday at Lehigh Valley Hospital-Cedar Crest, Allentown.

He was born September 15, 1931 in Pottsville a son of the late Elmer and Julia O'Brien Hummel.

He was a 1949 graduate of Pottsville High School.

He was Army Veteran having served during the Korean War.

Ned was a mailman for the U.S. Post Office in Pottsville, prior to retiring.

Ned was a member of St. Patrick Roman Catholic Church, Pottsville, Yorkville Hose Fire Co., Pottsville and NARFE.

He was preceded in death by tow twin sisters, Francis Buehler and Blanche Rodgers.

Surviving are his wife of 62 years of marriage, Angeline "Nelle" Rakiewicz Hummel; 3 sons, Edward Hummel, and his husband, Bruce Harris; Mark Hummel and his wife Elayne, Bernville; Michael Hummel and his wife, Tiffany; Pottsville; 7 grandchildren, Max, Chanel, Hanna, Adam, Rachel, Caleb and Samarra; nieces and nephews.

Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Friday at 11AM from St. Patrick Roman Catholic Church, Pottsville. Family and friends are invited to a viewing from 9AM until the time of mass Friday at the church. The family would prefer remembrances in the form of contributions in memory of Ned be made to St. Patrick Memorial Fund, 319 Mahantongo St. Pottsville, PA 17901 or Yorkville Hose Fire Co. PO Box 1222 Pottsville, PA 17901. Interment with military honors will be at Calvary Cemetery, Pottsville.

Arrangements are under the care of James E. Humphrey Funeral Home, Pottsville.


Diane M. Luiken
, of Pottsville, was a 61-year-old born in Jamaica Queens, NY on September 18, 1960 and raised in Old Bridge, NJ. She graduated from St. Mary’s High School in South Amboy, NJ in 1978. She died on the afternoon of January 3, 2022 of COVID-19 pneumonia. During the summers’ while in High School she worked at Bun and Burger. After graduation she worked at Blunder and Tongue assembling electrical circuits, and Crazy Eddies.

Diane’s purpose in life was being a dedicated mother first and foremost. She spoke about wanting to grow up and be a Mother since she was a little girl and that is exactly what she successfully did. She treasured her 5 children and embraced every moment with them. She especially loved her role as a Grandmother. She had a witty and fun-loving personality, always made people around her feel welcome, included and laugh. She had a very kind heart was very generous to everyone around her. Diane lost the love of her life Jack Luiken and her beloved Father, Leonard Zumpano within 2 weeks of each other back in 2002. Diane lost her beloved Mother, Doris Lauer Zumpano in 2010 and her beloved brother Eric Zumpano in 2020. Over the past 20 years she somehow found the courage to persevere to raise her 5 children on her own. She had a strong spirit that kept her Family motivated to keep going after so many losses at such a young age.

She was a loving and devoted mother of John M. Luiken, Jr. and wife Amber Luiken of Port Carbon, PA, Jean Marie Luiken Cato, and Eric P. Luiken and wife Diana Luiken of Pottsville, PA, Timothy E. Luiken of Frackville, PA and Stephen C. Luiken of Orwigsburg, PA.

Cherished grandchildren oldest to youngest include Aaliyah J. Cato, John M. Luiken III, Paris L Cato, Mark A. Luiken, Rodolfo Valdez Jr, Beckett G. Luiken and great granddaughter Amoura Cato.

She is survived by her sister Anne Zumpano Zechel, and husband Carl Zechel of Rubicon, WI, her sister-in-law Maria Star Zumpano and sister Laura Zumpano and life partner, Harald Murck of Westfield, NJ. She also survived by nieces Jessica Dwyer Witt, Erika Zumpano, Alexandra Zumpano and nephew Edward Dwyer.

Family and friends invited are to a Service of Remembrance 11AM Saturday, January 22nd, at the James E. Humphrey Funeral Home on 1112 West Market Street, Pottsville. A visitation will be held for 9:30AM until the time of services. Interment will be private at Calvary Cemetery, Pottsville. The family request that masks are to be worn for all attendees.


Catherine Postic, 97, of Minersville, passed away Wednesday, January 12th, at York Terrace Golden Living Center, Pottsville, Pa. 

Catherine was born in Forestville, Pa. on July 3, 1924, a daughter of the late Anna (Wananchalk) and Andrew Celep. She was the widow of Wassel Postic. Catherine was a lifetime member of Saint Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic Church. She once worked as a seamstress in the local garment industry. She was a former member of the St. Nicholas Seniors, Auxiliary member New Minersville Hose Co.,and the Coalcracker Polka Association. 

In addition to her parents and her husband, Wassel, she was preceded in death by sisters, Sophie Burdis, Angela Stanchick, Mary Sholansky, Martha King, and. Brothers; Max, Michael, and John Celep. Catherine is survived by a son, Michael D. Postic (Nancy), of Orwigsburg; Catherine is also survived by a sister, Anna Docherty, of Pottsville. 

A Visitation will be held 8:30 AM to 10:00 AM on Tuesday, January 18th at Mahal-Ritzel Funeral Home Inc., Minersville. Requiem Divine Liturgy 10:30 AM at Saint Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic Church Minersville, with Reverend Mark Fesniak officiating. 

Interment at St. Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic. Mahal-Ritzel Funeral Home Inc., Minersville entrusted with the arrangements.


Daniel D. Stevens, 67 of the Vulcan passed away Friday at his residence.

Born June 17, 1954 in the Vulcan he was the son of the late Patrick and Anna Warner Stevens.

He graduated from Mahanoy Area High school in 1972.

Dan retired from Schuylkill Energy Resources. He enjoyed hunting and fishing and was a member of the MTA Fish and Game Club and Bears Head Sportsman Association.

Preceding him in death were his wife Julie (Mabus) Stevens, brothers Richard, Jerome and Patrick Stevens.

Dan is survived by three sons Daniel and wife Jennifer Stevens, Florida; Jason and wife Jennifer Stevens, Barnesville; Skyler Milheim and fiancé Dietra DeRose, Effort; a sister Marie Heiser, Bellefont a brother David Stevens, Vulcan. He is also survived by three grandchildren Joshua, Emily and Sarah; nieces and nephews.

Services will be announced.