Obituary of Walter Stanko
Walter J. Stanko, age 84, passed away peacefully at home on Friday, September 21, 2018 surrounded by his loving family.
A loving husband and father of four, Walter was born on January 4, 1934 to John and Jennie Stanko in Chicago, Illinois. He met the love of his life, Joan (Stich) Stanko, at Pfaelzer Brothers, a purveyor of fine meats and now the famous steak cataloger in Chicago. Walter, a butcher for 16 years, would receive his weekly paycheck from Joan, a payroll administrator. It became obvious over the years that Walter, with that hidden entrepreneurial spirit, not only found his wife at Pfaelzer Brothers but also his future bookkeeper.
As a result of Walter’s fine mechanical knowledge, he left Pfaelzer Brothers to join Raymond Corporation as a forklift mechanic. He worked at Raymond for 10 years before his entrepreneurial mindset took hold – possibly as a result of Joan’s prodding. Together, they founded Reliant Lift Truck Services, a successful business enterprise that lasted until their retirement in 2016. The partnership worked beautifully because Walter understood the mechanical side of the operations and Joan managed the administrative details of the business.
Walter and Joan lived in Oak Lawn for over 40 years where they raised four children, Wayne, Brian, Kathy and Cindy. Eight years ago, they moved to Shorewood, Illinois where they found the home of their dreams on a small lake. It was a view of the water and the beautiful sunrises that made them most happy. It was also a place where their seven grandchildren would come to boat and fish.
Walter was an Army veteran who spent most of his service time (1954-56) training in Austria. Surrounded by the Bavarian Alps, Austria was a place of extreme beauty and silence. This experience probably characterizes why Walter could enjoy the more simple things in life. He enjoyed working in his garage, keeping his yard meticulous, and even snow blowing neighbor driveways for many years.
Walter’s beloved wife, Joan, passed away July 23, 2018. . His parents, John and Jennie (nee Rochowicz) Stanko; a brother, Bob, and a sister, Ellen, also preceded him in death.
He is survived by his four children, Brian Stanko of St. Charles, Wayne (Nancy) Stanko of Colorado, Cynthia (Paul) Stanko-Hendrickson of Minooka, and Kathleen Stanko of Shorewood; seven grandchildren, Ashley (Pusateri) Barta, Rachel (Pusateri) Hammerstein, Justin Stanko, Brandon Stanko, Jordan Stanko, Kelly Stanko and Kerry Stanko; four great-grandchildren, Kaiden and Gavin Barta and Hunter and Willow Hammerstein; and three siblings, John and Ted Stanko and Joanne Tanner.
Visitation will be held Sunday, September 30, 2018 from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m., and will be followed by a funeral service at 5:00 p.m. at the Fred C. Dames Funeral Home, 3200 Black at Essington Roads, Joliet. Pastor Kevin Comfort from Judson Memorial Baptist Church will officiate. Cremation rites will be accorded following services and interment will be private.
In lieu of flowers, memorials in his name to Judson Church, 2800 Black Rd, Joliet, IL 60435 or Joliet Area Community Hospice, 250 Water Stone Circle, Joliet, IL 60431 would be appreciated.
For more information please call (815) 741-5500 or to leave an online condolence for the family, please visit his Memorial Tribute at www.fredcdames.com
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