John Petro, 91, of Lake Shore Drive, passed away Sunday, September 23, 2018 in the comfort of his home. He was born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, on April 7, 1927, the son of John and Susan (Lichvar) Petro.
John’s upbringing was greatly influenced by the Great Depression. His childhood consisted of second hand clothing and meager existence. His school days were accentuated by additional Russian language classes, which he often tried to avoid. Like many others of his generation, he answered the call of duty by enlisting in the US Army in 1946, and the US Air Force in 1951.
The Air Force is where John flourished into the man, husband, and father that many of us remember respected, and loved. By the time he retired from Plattsburgh Air Force Base as Chief Master Sergeant in 1979, John had overseas tours of Japan, Germany, Philippines, and Thailand. While on the mainland, he and his family were stationed in Tacoma WA, Great Falls MT, Dover DE, Chicopee MA, and Plattsburgh NY.
“Johnny P” to his new friends and “Jackie” to his family, received the following decorations; Bronze Star Medal, WWII Victory Medal, Korean Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, United Nations Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, and the US Air Force Commendation Medal with Oak Leaf Clusters, to list just a few.
During his retirement John still enjoyed travelling as a car swap specialist for Avis/Hertz Car Rentals and Della (Morgan)Honda. He was an avid reader, crossword player, bowler, golfer, Yankees fan, poker player, football enthusiast (Steelers) and excelled at all bar games, especially billiards. He could often be seen at the Post 20 having a drink with his wife Katie, and holding court with all his friends. Maybe his biggest secret was a love of music. If you were lucky, you might hear him singing and whistling his favorite tunes.
John is survived by his wife, Kathe, whom he met and married in the Netherlands in 1956. His daughter Susan Casella, husband Gary, her two children Jason and Richard Sulley, and great grand-child Landon; daughter Cathy Dusaniwsky, husband Olech; daughter Alison Benoit, husband Joseph and two children Katje and Jack; his son John Petro, wife Stephanie (DeLaura) and their two sons, Jonas and Nicholas. John’s extended family includes his brother, James Petro, wife Lorraine, three children Caryn, Christine, and James; as well as his sister Ruth Dudes and her daughter Dianne.
Special thanks and appreciation goes out to John’s caregiver sisters, Melissa and Michelle Witt. Their amazing dedication and expertise will forever entwine them in our family. Also, thank-you to Hospice Nurse, Tammy Czora, and team members Becky, Michelle, Cathy and Sister Mary Ann.
Calling hours will be held on Thursday, September 27th, 2018 from 5pm to 7pm at Heald Funeral Home, 48 Court St., Plattsburgh NY. A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated Friday September 28th, 2018 from St. Peter's Church in Plattsburgh. A graveside service will follow with full military honors at St. Peter's Cemetery. Arrangements are in the care of Jay E. Heald, Heald Funeral Home, Inc. Donations may be made to Hospice of the North Country in lieu of flowers.
To light a memorial candle or leave an online condolence please visit