January 17, 1942 -
August 2, 2019
Joe Hrezo, 77, formerly of New Salem, passed away August 2, 2019, in Jupiter, Fla., after a long and courageous battle with cancer. Born January 17, 1942, in Uniontown, he was a son of the late Michael and Elizabeth Demeter Hrezo of New Salem.
Joe graduated as an All-State athlete from Uniontown Area High School in 1959. He continued his education and football career at the University of Maryland, College Park, earning his Bachelor of Science degree in Business and Public Administration in 1963.
After college, Joe served our country for four and a half years in the United States Air Force and ascended to the rank of captain. Following his military service, he worked for Air America, Inc. and World Airways, Inc. based in Manila, Philippines, and Bangkok, Thailand. While working with World Airways, he participated in "Operation Babylift," a humanitarian effort that transported over 3,300 infants and children out of South Vietnam. In 1975, he was instrumental in coordinating and executing "The Last Flight Out of Danang, Vietnam." Parts of Joe's involvement were included in the books, "Tears Before the Rain" by Larry Engelmann and "The War Cradle" by Shirley Peck-Barnes.
Joe enjoyed a career in logistics and airline transportation management in Saudi Arabia, Singapore and Indonesia before returning to the United States, where he worked for Emery Worldwide Airlines and later ASTAR Air Cargo, Inc., retiring in 2012.
Joe is survived by his devoted and loving wife of 30 years, Carolina "Suzy" Suwandi Hrezo, whom he met while working in Indonesia and will love "Always and Forever." Left to cherish Joe's memory are his sister, Irene Hrezo Marshall and her husband, Frank, of New Salem; nephew Matthew of Richland, Wash., and fiance Jeannette Podlogar of Uniontown; nephew Daniel of Columbia, Md.; and niece Natalie of Carnegie. Joe is also survived by his uncle, Brother Joseph Mary Hrezo, CPPS, of Carthagena , Ohio.
Surviving in Indonesia are his mother-in-law, Mariati Suwandi; and sister-in-law Angelica "Lica" Suwandi. Also surviving are sisters-in-law Patricia "Patty" (Chris) Staley of Newport, R.I., and Laurensia "Laura" (Patrick) Murnaghan; niece Catherine and nephew Paul Michael from Wellington, Fla. He will also be remembered by many special cousins and beloved friends.
Joe was a member of Saint Peter Catholic Church in Jupiter, American Legion Post CH01, the University of Maryland Alumni Association, and the Uniontown Class of 1959 Scholarship Committee. Joe was inducted into the Uniontown Area High School Hall of Fame (2017) followed by his induction into the Fayette County Sports Hall of Fame (2018).
A Memorial Mass will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, August 24, at St Peter's Catholic Church, 1701 Indian Creek Parkway, Jupiter, FL 33458.
The family would like to send their sincere gratitude to the doctors, nurses and staff at Trustbridge Hospice Foundation in Jupiter.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you make a donation in Joe's memory to the Uniontown High School Class of 1959 Scholarship Fund (http://uhs1959.com/schol.htm).
Arrangements are in the care of AYCOCK RIVERSIDE FUNERAL AND CREMATION CENTER, 1112 Military Trail, Jupiter, FL 33458.