For Immediate Assistance

Joseph T. Gavlick

Tuesday, April 1, 1930Sunday, January 28, 2018

Joseph Thomas Gavlick, born April 01, 1930, graduated into Eternal Life on January 28, 2018. Joe lived most of his life in Swoyersville, and at a young age was determined to not be a coal miner. Soon after graduating from Swoyersville High School's Class of 1947, Joe enlisted with the United States Marine Corp at the age of 17. He served in the USMC Color Guard at Arlington Cemetery from July 1947 through 1950 and was part of the four-man guard serving in the military honor processions and funerals. Joe was also part of the Silent Drill Platoon that displayed their drills in the Sunset Parades where Marines from the Marine Barracks in Washington, D.C. honored the memory of those who have given their lives to their country since 1775.

Joe studied at The Penn State Technical Institute in Wilkes-Barre through the GI bill and received his degree in Industrial Electricity in 1951. He was hired that same year by the Daystrom Archbald facility on their very first day of hiring. The plant grew into what is now Lockheed Martin Control Systems. Joe began working as a Test Technician helping to build the test tooling that would later become an important part of production. He remained in the Test department advancing to Group Leader, Foreman and eventually to Manager. Joe held the shortest tenure in a position at the Archbald facility because in 1959 he spent one hour as a QA Engineer before being promoted to Foreman.  Joe retired in 2008 and even after 57 years of commuting, he stated that he never wanted to retire because he thrived on the ever-changing technological field that made his work as interesting as it was during the 1950's and also because the employees "kept him young." When Joe finally conceded to retirement it was in the heart of thinking that giving up his job would provide an opportunity for someone younger. Joe was referred to as the "Mighty Mentor" who shared his principles of quality and building loyalty within his team. He encouraged them to develop their skills and helped them to advance their careers. Later in Joe's career, he was proud of gaining approval from management to designate a plant-wide official "Dress Up Monday" to counterbalance "Dress Down Friday" knowing that dressing your best was key to feeling successful.

When his children were young, Joe enjoyed coaching for the West Wyoming Little League and was responsible for building the 1st electronic scoreboard for the field. He loved attending the Polish Family reunions where he could be certain to dance the Polka with Aunt Gertie or one of the "Puchalsky Girls." Regarding his family, Joe was always at the ready to give sound advice and support and was an outstanding example of dedication and teaching his children and grandchildren to never give up. When Joe wasn't washing and waxing his car, he enjoyed tending to his garden and projects around the house. Joe enjoyed cultivating Schefflera plants and distributed them to scores of co-workers and to his family. One of Joe's favorite hobbies was reading and cutting out the daily Hagar comic strips from the newspaper. He placed them in albums and believed that future generations would find it valuable to sit down with one of his albums and read about a day in the life of Hagar whose common challenges are similar to those of an average family man.

Joe was a member of Saint Monica's Parish, West Wyoming, and the American Legion, Andrew Lawrence Post 644, Swoyersville.

The son of the late Joseph Frank and Lottie (Jablonsky) Gavlick, Joe was also preceded in death by his son, David Joseph Gavlick; his sister, Dorothy, at an early age; his brother, John; and his cousin, Irene Puchalsky, who was like a sister to him.

Joe was blessed with a loving family - all of whom he cherished and was so very proud of. Those who are here to miss him include his son, Joseph David Gavlick and wife, Christine, Red Lion, PA; his daughter, Sharon Gavlick, Dayton, Ohio; his grandchildren, Amy Gavlick (Nate), Gina Gavlick Martzall (Joel), Joseph Aaron Gavlick (Jessica), Ryan Gavlick (Christine) and Eric Gavlick (Katy), D.J. Gavlick, Matthew Gavlick and Jeffrey Gavlick; his Great-Grandchildren, Haley, Isabella, River, Chase, Lennox, Stella Rose, and due to be born this February in Joe's namesake: Joseph Preston; his Great-Great Grandchildren, Kayden, Neeko, and Leo; his brothers, Raymond Gavlick and wife, Vilma, Harrisburg; and Richard Gavlick and wife, Joyce, Swoyersville; his nephews, Ricky, Ray, Darrell, and niece, Cathy; his special friend, Mary; and his many cousins.

After two years of enjoying his retirement, Joe suffered a massive stroke yet his motto of "Once a Marine, Always a Marine" produced courage and fortitude in his therapy program. Many physical therapists cracked open their books again because Joe was breaking the mold and he exceeded all expectations and defied the odds. Joe's family extends deepest thanks to all the therapists and caregivers at Timber Ridge, Wilkes-Barre; Country Meadows, Leader Heights, and especially those at Misericordia Nursing and Rehab Center in York, PA were Joe lived the past 4 years of his life. Their loving care came from a true service dedicated to God and we are forever grateful to them. 

Relatives and Friends are respectfully invited to attend the funeral will be conducted on Saturday, February 03, 2018, at 9:00 AM from the Wroblewski Funeral Home, Inc., 1442 Wyoming Avenue, Forty Fort, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial to be celebrated at 9:30 AM in Saint Monica’s Parish, 363 West 8th Street, West Wyoming, with Reverend Peter A. Tomczak, Pastor, officiating.

Interment with the Rite of Committal will follow in Mount Olivet Roman Catholic Cemetery, Carverton, where Military Honors will be accorded by the United States Marine Corps.

Family and Friends are invited to call on Friday, February 02, 2018, from 5:00 to 8:00 PM at the funeral home.

For additional information or to send the Gavlick family an online message of condolence, you may visit the funeral home website,

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in Joe's memory to St. Monica's Parish, 363 West 8th Street, West Wyoming, PA, 18644.

Service Date
Saturday, February 3, 2018 - 9:30am

A viewing for Joe will be held on Friday, February 02, 2018, from 5:00 to 8:00 PM, at the Wroblewski Funeral Home, Inc., 1442 Wyoming Avenue, Forty Fort.

The funeral service will begin on Saturday, February 03, 2018, at 9:00 AM at the funeral home. Those relatives and friends who will be joining in the funeral procession are asked to assemble at the funeral home between 8:15 and 9:45 AM on Saturday morning.

A Mass of Christian Burial will follow at 9:30 AM at Saint Monica’s R.C. Parish, 363 West 8th Street, West Wyoming. The Reverend Peter A. Tomczak, Pastor, will serve as celebrant.  

Interment with the Rite of Committal will follow in Mount Olivet Roman Catholic Cemetery, Swoyersville, where Military Honors will be accorded by the United States Marine Corps.

Following the Service, the family would like all those in attendance to join them for a luncheon. Details will be announced at the cemetery.


Mount Olivet R.C. Cemetery | View Map


Wroblewski Funeral Home | View Map


Saint Monica's Parish / Our Lady of Sorrows Church | View Map


May the memories of your Dad stay close to you at this time, Joe.
Thank you Dad for being My Best Buddy Ever! At Ease Soldier! I Love You to Heaven and Back, Pip aka Sharon
To Joseph and Sharon and the entire Gavlick Family, I am sorry for the loss of your father. I worked for Joe and with Joe for 32 years. He hired me and also promoted me. He was not only the Best Boss I ever had but also one of my Best and closest friends. I will always remember him and be grateful to him for all that he gave me. May he Rest In Peace, AMEN. James Cherundolo
Dear Joe and Sharon, I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I sincerely loved your dad and enjoyed the time I was able to spend with him. I loved learning about him through you both and helping to connect pieces of past and present. I will continue to keep you all in my thoughts and prayers. Bethany Guevara

Dear Tom,

How can I ever thank you enough for leading us through our recent experience!

I have received so many compliments on the obituary for Mike; the Funeral Mass; and the Military Ceremony at the Cemetery. Your input made all of this possible!

Rose Kayrish and Family