Captain Harry Gregory Newak Jr. was born and raised in Forest City, the son of the late Harry J. and Susan Matircho Newak. This treasured husband, father, grand-father, Pop-pop and friend, embarked on his great journey to reunite with his Lord and Savior on Sunday, November 3rd, 2019. He was lovingly surrounded by his family as he left the harbor of his earthly home, gaining glorious passage to his merited destination.
He will be lovingly missed by his wife of 66 years, the former Margaret “Peggy” Kigerl; three children: Michele (Philip) Biondo; Deborah (James) Biondo, Michael (Patricia) Newak, 16 Grandchildren: Alyson Lavit; Alycia Biondo; Seth (Leanne) Biondo; Erin (Patrick) Pace; Patrick (Tomlynn) Biondo; Olivia, Jacquelyne and Kathleen Biondo; Carlin (Dustin) O’Keefe; Cayla (Andrew) Herman; James Biondo; Kelsey (William) Smith; Stephanie (Jason) Collier; Amy Pisarcik (companion Seth Tratthen); Mary Newak (companion Lincoln Gabriel); Christine Newak (companion Mark Ohman); and 38 Great Grandchildren.
He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother: Joseph Newak.
Harry was a graduate of Forest City High School and attended the Pennsylvania Schoolship (training vessels USS Annapolis and USCG Seneca) before transferring to the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, NY, graduating in 1942. He served in the Merchant Marines in the capacity of Jr., Sr., Third Mate, Second Mate and Chief Mate in all theaters of WWII, obtaining his Masters license in 1946.
After the war he figured in the rescue of 51 persons at sea. His maritime career led him to master numerous vessels around the world for the next 11 years. He and Peggy made their home and raised their family in Bloomfield, NJ. During this time, he was employed by the Maritime Community, was President of the Marine Society of New York and Trustee of Sailors Snug Harbor of New York.
Harry returned to his hometown of Forest City in 1985, purchasing and expanding the local beer distributorship with his son, Michael, renaming it Forest City Beverage. He was a faithful parishioner of St. John Vianney Parish, Royal. Harry became involved in the local community, gaining stature as a Fourth degree Knight of Columbus, and a charter member for 66 years of Council 3506, Forest City; an active member of the American Legion Post 529, Forest City; former President and Treasurer of the Forest City Rotary Club and a Paul Harris Fellow who spearheaded the creation of the Anthracite Coal Miners Memorial; a life time member of both the Forest City and Greenfield Township Historical Societies; a life time founding member of the NEPA Rail-Trail Council; and was named Distinguished Citizen of Forest City in 1988.
The family extends their gratitude to the staff at Traditional Hospice for their loving and compassionate care during Harry’s final days.
The funeral will be Saturday, November 9th with a Mass of Christian Burial at 10:30 am in St. Pius X Church, 3493 State Route 106, Royal. Interment with military honors will follow at Our Mother of Sorrows Cemetery, State Routes 106 & 247, Finch Hill. Friends may call Saturday at the church from 10 am until mass time. Arrangements by the Jones & Brennan Funeral Home, 430 Main Street, Forest City.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed in memory of Captain Harry Newak to either the Forest City Area Rotary Club, PO Box 16, Forest City, PA 18421; American Legion Post 524, PO Box 106, Forest City, PA 18421; or Traditional Hospice, 113 West Drinker Street, Dunmore, PA 18512.
“It’s a new dawn, it’s a new day, its a new life for me, and I’m Feelin good”
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American Legion Post 524
PO BOX 106, Forest City PA 18421
Forest City Area Rotary Club
PO BOX 16, Forest City PA 18421
113 West Drinker Street, Dunmore PA 18512