Monday, April 25, 2005

I don't want to take any attention away from the news of Corrine's son who needs our prayers (see yesterday's posting) and I will follow up when I get more information from Beverly, but I just got some more news that will be of interest to a few of you reading the blog.

I just found out from Joe Petrasek that one of our classmates from St. John's passed away a few weeks ago. Many people from our O'Reilly class may not know Conrad Walko, but for the benefit of those who went to St. John's or Sacred Heart, I figured I would post this information to the weblog. Here's the message Joe sent me:

..."I just found out that Conrad Walko passed away about 2 weeks ago. I found out through Rick Sendrick, Rose's twin brother.

Rick was good friends with Conrad and tried to keep in touch. Someone at
the hockey rink told Rick about Conrad. Rick called his mom and she told
Rick that Conrad was in to help her with some things around the house.
Conrad finished cutting the grass and came in the house and told his mother
that he didn't feel good. Conrad put his head down on the kitchen table and
passed away."

I assume it must have been a heart attack. I found the following obituary on-line in the the Citizens Voice.

"Conrad Francis Walko, 45, of Orlando, Fla., passed away Wednesday (April 6th).

He was born on April 28, 1959, in Kingston, son of Nancy Karmilowicz Walko and the late Conrad Walko. He was a new car manager in the automotive industry. He was Catholic.
Conrad was a wonderful son, father and caring brother. He worked very hard for his family. His free time was spent coaching various sports activities for his two sons, as well as riding dirt bikes with them. He was an avid NASCAR fan.
Surviving in addition to his mother, are sons, Conrad Lawrence and Tyler Joseph Walko, both of Altamonte Springs, Fla.; longtime companion, Gina Bonacchi and her daughters, Alexis and Arianna, all of Orlando, Fla.; brothers, David Brandon Walko, Maine; Christopher Walko, Washington.
A graveside service will be held Wednesday at 10 in St. Mary's of the Annunciation Cemetery, Pringle. Arrangements are by Betz-Jastremski Funeral Home Inc., Luzerne."

There is a picture of Conrad on the 1973 St. John's graduation photo. He's in the 4th row on the far right. I also noticed that Jack Kamus who passed away in 2003 is on the far left of the same row. It's really sad when we lose good people like this at such a young age. I lost contact with Conrad after we graduated from St. John's. I think he went to Wyoming Valley West, but I don't know for sure. I still have a lot of fond memories of him, and have a set of faint scars on my fingers that got caught between the soles of his shoes and the hard surface of St. John's playground while he was sliding into home. I recall how apologetic he was about it, even though it was an accident and not his fault.


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