KOZAK – Michael Richard, 81, Richland, passed away April 27, 2023 at Arbutus Park Manor. Born December 21, 1941, in Johnstown, the son of the late Michael and Margaret (Svitil) Kozak. Preceded in death by parents, four infant brothers, sister-in-law, Olga Bukovich, Agnes Bukovich and Godson Steven Bukovich. Survived by wife, Monica, of 57 years; brother-in-law, Victor Bukovich and wife Pauline Crum; niece Veronika Borge (Lon) of Bluffton, SC; nephews, Jeffrey Bukovich (Carolyn) of Butler, PA, Victor Leonard Bukovich of Johnstown and Goddaughter Kristin Klein (Kevin) of McMurray, PA and numerous grand nieces and nephews and great grandnieces.
Upon his graduation from Greater Johnstown High School in 1959, Michael entered and graduated from California State Teachers College (now the University of California, California, PA.) He taught machine shop at Garfield Junior High School until 1969 and then enrolled at Texas A&M University to pursue his doctorate in education. He retired from the University of North Texas, Denton, Texas in 2012 after serving as Coordinator of the Graduate School of Engineers and teaching Plastics Engineering. He wrote numerous professional publications and gave presentations both in the U.S. and abroad including teaching two summers at Moscow University.
During his high school years, he enjoyed playing piano with a local band called The Intrigues. He talked about performing with Chubby Checker and other upcoming artists of that time. In the mid-1960’s he taught piano and organ at the Music Haven.
After retiring from the University of North Texas and moving back to Johnstown, he enjoyed living at Graystone Court Villa and all the wonderful residents with whom he shared his stories and alcohol supply. He looked forward to playing pinochle every Sunday evening with his brother-in-law and sister-in-law. He could be found every Labor Day weekend making funnel cakes at the Community Arts Center. On patriotic days, when needed, he was proud to assist the Kiwanis Club lining Scalp Avenue with flags.
As a charter member, he served on the annual Slavic Festival committee. He was a Forth Degree member of the Knights of Columbus and served on the council. As a member of Rotary Club of Johnstown, he served on the Board and was awarded the “Golden Quill Award” for his weekly newsletter. He was a member of the Johnstown Symphony Auxiliary and enjoyed publishing their quarterly newsletter for ten years as well as working on special projects and events. He enjoyed dining out with the Johnstown High School Class of ’59 group that meets every Wednesday evening at a local restaurant.
A special thank you to all the staff at Arbutus Park Manor and the staff of Windber Hospice for the loving and compassionate care he received while there.
Friends will be received Sunday April 30th from 2:00 PM to 6:00 PM at the Francis G. Ozog Funeral Home Inc. located at 710 Broad Street. A Funeral Mass will be held Monday May 1st at 1:00 PM at St. Benedict Catholic Church, with Rev. David S. Peles. Committal will take place at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Johnstown Symphony Orchestra, 416 Main St.., Suite 202, Johnstown, PA 15901, Rotary Club of Johnstown, P.O. Box 42, Johnstown, PA 15904 or the charity of your choice.
To send flowers
to the family or plant a tree
in memory of Michael R. Kozak, please visit our floral store.