CANFIELD, Ohio (MyValleyTributes) – We celebrate the life of our father, grandfather, great-grandfather, uncle, neighbor and friend, John “Jack” Birath, who celebrated his 98th birthday June 22, 2021. Dad was reunited with the love of his life on Thursday, July 29, 2021. His beloved wife of 63 years, Mary Katherine (Backus) Birath, left us in 2006 and Dad frequently said that he was looking forward to seeing her in heaven.
Dad was born on June 22, 1923, at home in Youngstown, to Johan (John) Albin Birath and Ellen Lindquist Birath.
Dad was an accomplished woodworker, vegetable and flower gardener and all-around “Jack of all trades.” His woodworking projects, made from plans he created, adorn the homes of his children and grandchildren.
An Army veteran of World War ll, Dad served with distinction in both the European and Pacific theaters. He observed that the Army taught him discipline and leadership, both qualities that helped him to temper his somewhat rebellious youthful spirit. (He is one of the few persons who tumbled over Lanterman’s Falls when, as a teenager, he attempted to prove he could walk over the ledge above the falls, but slipped and down he went!)
After the war, he was employed by Commercial Shearing as a press operator, Republic Steel as a motor inspector and Boardman Schools as head custodian at Glenwood Avenue Middle School, from which he retired.
Dad is survived by his two children, John (Bonnie) Birath of Columbus and Susan (Tim) Jacob of Boardman. He was a loving grandfather (always known as “Pop”) to five grandchildren, John (Nimisha), James (Carol), Heather, Jennifer (Brian) Gerschutz and Michael (Suzanne) Pfeiffer; nine great-grandchildren, Meirra, Shayla, Jack, Kate, Maddie, Ava, Drew, Nolan and Lena and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents and stepmother Marie Gustafson Birath; four brothers, Louis, Donald, Kenneth and Carl; four sisters, Vivian, Ethel Baker, Ellen Mae Lyster, and Donna Jean Whitenack; stepbrothers Robert, Roger and Ralph Gustafson and stepsister Anna Marie Martindale.
A private service for family will be held at a later date.
Arrangements are being handled by the Lane Anstrom Chapel.
In lieu of flowers, our family asks that you consider a contribution in Dad’s memory to Hospice of the Valley, 5190 Market Street, Youngstown, Ohio 44512, or to a charity of your choice.
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