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. Johnny Piontkowski, Jr. 86, long time resident of Loup City passed away on Friday, August 11, 2023 at Rose Lane Home in Loup City. Mass of Christian Burial will be 10:30 a.m. Thursday, August 17, 2023 at St. Josaphat’s Catholic Church in Loup City. Father Richard Piontkowski will celebrate the Mass. Burial will follow at the Evergreen Cemetery in Loup City. Visitation will be from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Wednesday, August 16 at St. Josaphat’s with a Rosary to follow at 6:00 p.m. Memorials are suggested to the Donor’s Choice, Loup City Fire, Loup City EMT’s or Grace Cancer Foundation in Grand Island.
Johnny was the fourth of 6 children born to John & Agnes (Szafrajda) Piontkowski on a farm south of Loup City in Sherman County on August 3, 1937. He attended country school until the 8th grade and then attended Loup City High School where he graduated in May 1955. After he graduated, he attended the University of Tennessee on a football scholarship. However, due to a knee injury, his college football career ended early.
Johnny also played baseball for the Sherman-Howard baseball League.
After farming with his parents for two years, Johnny went to work in Illinois, at the Caterpillar Factory. Johnny eventually decided to come back to Nebraska where he would work on the railroad for two years. After his time on the railroad, he spent 5 years working on construction of the Sherman Dam with Bushman Construction.
During his time with Bushman, Johnny met the love of his life, Phyllis Kizior. They were united together in Holy matrimony on September 16, 1961. To this union, four wonderful children were born: Debra, Robert, Cynthia, & Juliana.
After construction of the Dam was completed, Johnny decided to stay in Loup City, rather than traveling with the company. He spent seven years working as a carpenter at the Cornhusker Army Ammunition plant in Grand Island. When the Army Ammunition Plant closed, Johnny spent 11 years working as a carpenter and handyman for Jim Trotter and Jim Larchick. He decided to start his own business doing carpentry and cement work until his retirement in 2008.
Since 1951, Johnny has been a loyal Yankees baseball fan. At times, he would even skip class with friends to listen to the Yankees play on the radio. He thoroughly enjoyed attending the horse races at Fonner Park and was often joined by family and friends. He had a great love for the birds and squirrels, and made sure they never went hungry.
Johnny took great pleasure in all of the flowers his wife planted and tended to. Every night before the evening meal, Johnny & his wife would play several games of Pinochle.
He loved making breakfast for his grandkids. He was always cautious not too be loud and wake them, but instead let the smell of his cooking do that for him. His specialty meatloaf and chili were the best.
He was a member of St Josaphat’s Catholic Church.
Survivors are his wife of (almost) 62 years, Phyllis. Daughters, Debbie Harshbarger, Cyndie (Doug) Schoof, Julie (David) Roy, and son, Robbie Piontkowski. Seven grandchildren, Kyle Frear, Travis (Rebecca) Frear, Quinten Harshbarger; Jakob Piontkowski; Stefanie (Eric) Kuszak: Jamie Roy; and Spencer (Molly) Schoof. Eight great grandchildren, Taelyn, Breckyn, Brooklyn, & Rowyn Kuszak, Layton & Lane Frear, Luke & Violet Schoof. A sister, Lois Welles, sister in-law Winona Piontkowski, and many nieces & nephews.
Preceding Johnny in death are his parents, John & Agnes, his in-laws, Steve & Irene Kizior, brothers, Richard Piontkowski and Ronald Piontkowski, and sisters, Ellen Kowalewski and Marilyn Czaplewski, sisters-in-law, Arlene Bannister and Jean Piontkowski, and brothers-in-law, Gayle Bannister and Reggie Welles.