John Stanchak, Janesville (1923 - 2013)
March 19, 1923 - December 23, 2013
John Stanchak, age 90, of Janesville, died on December 23, 2013, at home. John was born to Michael and Rose (Szmajda) Stanchak on March 19, 1923, near Gorlice, Poland. In 1940 he was removed from his home by the German Wehrmacht and forced into labor in Germany for the duration of WWII. John remained in Germany after the war and married Clara Hartmann on February 26, 1949, in Germany. John, Clara, and three children, emigrated from Germany to the United States in 1955. They settled first in Lorain, Ohio, where he had relatives. The family, now with five children, moved to Wisconsin in 1968. He had been a resident of Janesville since 1974. John worked as an assembler of trucks for various companies until his retirement in 1990 from Dorsey Trailers in Edgerton. He was an exemplary worker and showed equal devotion to the welfare of his family. His passions in life were for small children, animals and gardening. Although most of his grandchildren lived far from Janesville, his two youngest lived close by, and John spent much of his early retirement providing day care for his young granddaughters, and the experience gave him great joy. He loved his succession of cats and was grieved at the loss of Lester, Mitzi and Norton. He is survived by his most recent cat, Kitty. John’s neighbors knew him for his large vegetable garden and gifts of fresh produce in the summer months. Gardening matched his talent for hard work and his need to do something useful. After his wife had a stroke in 2005, John cared for her, doing all the things necessary to keep both of them in their own home.
John is survived by his wife of nearly 65 years, Clara Stanchak, who shared the journeys in his life from Germany to Janesville; his five children: Maria (Tom) Greulich of Woodstock, GA; Waltraud Arts of Madison, WI; Carl (Yelena) Stanchak of Colorado Springs, CO; Peter (Susan) Stanchak of Battle Creek, MI; and Christine (Kevin) Snyder of Edgerton, WI; eight grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; his brother, James (Roberta) Stanchak, and sister, Stefanie Rewak, both of Lorain, OH; and nieces and nephews in Ohio, Germany and Poland. John was preceded in death by his mother and father; his older sister, Anna; and three younger brothers: Steve, William, and Peter.
A funeral service will be held at NATIVITY OF MARY PARISH, 313 E. Wall St., Janesville, at 11 a.m. on Saturday, December 28, 2013, with Fr. Stephen Umhoefer presiding. Visitation will be from 9:30 a.m. until the time of the service on Saturday at the church. Burial will be at a later date at St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery in Edgerton, WI. Memorials may be made to Nativity of Mary Church in Janesville or to the Rock County Humane Society. Brian Hansen Funeral Service, Janesville, 608-752-8800, is assisting the family. Online condolences may be made at www.hansenfh.com