Leonard W. Rafalko, 78, of Clarks Summit, died Monday evening, May 20, 2013, at Commonwealth Hospice of Northeast Pa. He and his wife, the former Lorraine Folta, would have celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on Aug. 17.
Born Nov. 24, 1934, in Scranton, son of the late Stanley and Julia Strellish Rafalko, he was educated in Minooka section schools and was a 1953 graduate of South Scranton Catholic High School, where he was a varsity letterman, and received his Bachelor of Arts degree in sociology from the University of Scranton. He honorably served in the Army overseas and in special services as a notable football player. He continued his love for football by playing for the Scranton Eagles.
He was a construction inspector and supervisor for more than 42 years, having been employed by the state Department of Transportation and retiring in 1991. He continued his professional career as a consultant for Penn DOT for special projects.
He was a faithful member of Our Lady of the Snows Parish and its Men's Club, Clarks Summit; active in his church, he was a daily communicant and often was an usher. He was an avid sports fan, and for many years was a PIAA official at area softball, baseball, basketball and football games. He was highly regarded as an honorable and fair umpire, donating his time to the Special Olympics. He was a dedicated fan of the Boston Red Sox.
He and his wife were devoted to St. Ann and regularly attended the St. Ann Novena.
He was a friendly kind gentleman who possessed a great sense of humor and shared many laughs with others. Having a rare blood type, he regularly donated his blood to the American Red Cross. A humble, knowledgeable man with a very large heart who will be sadly missed by all who knew and loved him.
Also surviving are a son, Leonard W. Rafalko II, Raleigh, N.C.; two daughters, Janine Rafalko Hoffman and husband, James, Denver, Colo.; and Leane Rafalko Lesniewski and husband, Mark, Raleigh, N.C.; a sister, Helene Potkul, Green Brook, N.J.; two sisters-in-law, Barbara Rafalko, Apalachin, N.Y.; Arline Rafalko, West Chester; nieces and nephews.
He was also preceded in death by two brothers, Gervus A. and John B. Rafalko.
The funeral will be Friday with Mass of Christian Burial at 10 a.m. in Our Lady of the Snows Church, 301 S. State St., Clarks Summit, to be celebrated by Monsignor James J. McGarry. Interment will be private in Indiantown Gap National Cemetery, Annville.
The family will receive relatives and friends Thursday from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Jennings-Calvey Funeral and Cremation Service Inc., 111 Colburn Ave., Clarks Summit.