John S. Holodak, resident of Orange, CT, formerly of Hastings-on-Hudson and Yonkers, NY, died Jan 28th following a long battle with diabetes.
He is survived by his beloved wife, Mildred, of Orange, CT, sons John (MaryEllen), William (Bernadette), Richard (Carol) and daughter Susan; 7 grandsons (John, Scott, Chris, Derek, Alex, Matt and Mark) and brothers Thomas (Eleanor), Francis (Peggy), Robert (Betty), James (Dawn) and sisters Helen Scanlon and Lillian Rusie and predeceased by sister Marie Durant.
After graduating from Manhattan College (’41), during WWII, John enlisted as a navigator in the 8th Army’s 458th Bombardment Group, flying B-24 Liberators out of Norwich, England. For a period of time, he worked as an interpreter for the Office of Strategic Services in London, communicating with the French Underground. On April 9, 1945, while flying on his 32nd mission, he was severely wounded when his plane was shot down over Germany, he was captured and incarcerated as a prisoner of war until liberated by General George Patton’s Allied forces near the end of the war. He received a Purple Heart and the Air Medal with 4 Oak-Leaf Clusters.
Following a long and successful career as a sales executive in the wine industry, John was an active member of Hudson Valley chapters of Ex-POW/MIAs and Disabled American Veterans organizations, a former president of the Westchester County chapter of National Alliance for Mentally Ill (NAMI), and former Grand Knight, Knights of Columbus, LaRabida Council.
A memorial service is to be held at Edwards-Dowdle Funeral Home, 64 Ashford Avenue, Dobbs Ferry, NY on Friday, Jan 30, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and 7 pm to 9 pm. A funeral mass will be celebrated on Saturday, Jan. 31 at 10 a.m. at St. Matthews R.C. Church, Warburton Avenue, Hastings-on-Hudson, NY.
Future interment will be scheduled at Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, VA.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Ex-POW/MIAs, Hudson Valley Chapter, P.O. Box 13, West Point, NY.