The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


November 10, 2012

Robert Richard Stopko

OXFORD, IOWA — STOPKO– Robert “Bobby” Richard, 77, Oxford, Iowa, died Thursday, Nov. 8, 2012, at his home surrounded by his family and friends. Robert was born in Windber, the son of  John Stopko and Thelma (Yonish) Stopko. As the son of a coal miner and the church cook, he was raised in Windber and attended Richland High School. At the age of 17, he enlisted in the USAF, where he completed his basic training at Sampson Air Force base in Geneva, N.Y., in 1954. Robert served in many places, including Colorado, Illinois, Canada, Japan, Turkey, Virginia, Texas, South Carolina, Wyoming, Iowa and Michigan. He also served two tours in Vietnam with 17 missions, and upon learning of his cancer prognosis, he was quoted as saying  “I have done two tours and 17 missions and survived, I guess this is the 18th mission.” Robert retired in 1975 and moved the family to Iowa. Many jobs followed, ending with his retirement from the University of Iowa after 22 years. Robert was preceded in death by his parents; sister-in- law, Anna Stopko; and   brother-in-law, Clinton Cahoon. Robert married Betty Jean (Gage), the daughter of Raymond and Beulah (Peck) Gage of Brimley, Mich. on Aug. 12, 1961, in Rudyard, Mich. He loved to go on cruises with Betty and play euchre on Thursday evening at the American Legion in Oxford, where he was a longtime member and served as the Legion commander in 1991, 1996 and 1997. Robert also was a huge Hawkeye fan, predicting out- comes till the end. He regularly attended Hawkeye football games. Robert also enjoyed watching all of his grandkids participate in different sporting events. Softball, basketball, volleyball, football, dance, he watched them all. Every year, Robert and Betty would head off to Florida to spend time with a special group of friends. Robert also enjoyed Minnesota and fishing with Sam. Robert was also “dad” to many others over the years – Judy Schwab, Martin Birley, Waneta Tomas and Jill Serrino. In June 2012, he was honored to become the first Vietnam veteran to attend the honor flight and see Washington, D.C., and all its monuments. The welcome home he received closed a long awaited chapter in his life. That was a very happy day for him. He is survived by his wife, Betty (Gage) Stopko of Oxford; four children, Michael Stopko (Lori Langenburg), and their three children, Nash, Mitchell and Lauren, all of Tiffin, Iowa; Melody Drewis (Tim Drewis), and their children, Kayla Morrissey (Travis Aldeman), all of Oxford; Moriah Williams (Brandon Williams), Tiffin; Kennedy and Lincoln Drewis, Tripoli, Iowa; Kevin Stopko (Amy Sass), and their children, Olivia and Peyton Stopko, all of Homestead, Iowa; Holly Poeschel (Jimmy Poeschel), and their children, Johnathan and Kara Poeschel, all of Riverside, Iowa; one great-grandson, Ryker William Aldeman (Kayla and Travis), Oxford; sister-inlaw, Dorothy Knudson, Walla Walla, Wash.; two sisters, Thelma Fetchik (Joe Fetchik), Washingtonville, N.Y., and Anna Deitz (Larry Deitz), Levittown, Pa.; brother, John Stopko Jr.,  Windber; many nieces and nephews; and his beloved dog, Lexi. Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Monday at St. Mary’s Auditorium in Oxford, where a parish vigil service will be held at 8 p.m.  Funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church Oxford, with burial to follow at Mount Calvary Cemetery, where full military honors will be performed.  Gay & Ciha Funeral and Cremation Service is caring for Robert’s family and his service. A memorial fund has been established in his memory.  Online condolences may be sent for his family at

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Radnoti, Paul Paul Radnoti Sr.

    RADNOTI – Paul Sr., 80, passed away July 13, 2014, in Hebron, Ind.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Saia, Samuel Samuel R. Saia

    SAIA – Samuel R., 90, Johnstown, died July 29, 2014, at Memorial Medical Center.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Alex J. Stavish

    STAVISH – Alex J., 90, Northern Cambria, died July 29, 2014, at Miners Medical Center Hastings.

    July 30, 2014

  • Margaret R. (Shaffer) Hemminger

    HEMMINGER – Margaret R. “Margie” (Shaffer), 93, formerly of Jenner Township, died July 29, 2014, at Meadow View Nursing Center, Berlin.

    July 30, 2014

  • Carol R. (Schloski) Groleau

    GROLEAU – Carol R. (Schloski), 56, Goshen, Mass., lost her battle with cancer July 16, 2014. Born Dec. 25, 1957, in Colver, she was the daughter of John and Olive (Spotts) Schloski.

    July 30, 2014

  • George J. Stapinsky

    STAPINSKY – George J. “Doodie” or “Hey You,” 85,  Fort Hill, formerly of Windber, died July 30, 2014, at In Touch Hospice, Somerset.

    July 30, 2014

  • District Deaths July 31, 2014

    July 30, 2014

  • Today's Funerals July 31, 2014

    July 30, 2014

  • District Deaths July 30, 2014

    July 29, 2014

  • Bakale, Patricia Patricia L. Bakale

    BAKALE – Patricia L, 81, Johnstown, went to be with our Lord July 28, 2014.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Stephen A. Christy

    CHRISTY – Stephen A., 65, Johnstown, died July 28, 2014, at home surrounded by family and friends.

    July 29, 2014

  • Custer, Margaret Margaret Custer

    CUSTER – Margaret “Peggy,” 69, Johnstown, passed away July 29, 2014, at Laurelwood Care Center.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Geiser, Kathleen Kathleen L. Geiser

    GEISER – Kathleen L., 84, Oakland,  died July 29, 2014, at Arbutus Park Manor.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Elaine Jean (Hamilton) Klayko

    KLAYKO – Elaine Jean (Hamilton), 65, Lilly, died at peace Tuesday morning, July 29, 2014, at her home.

    July 29, 2014

  • Matijevich, Nicholas Nicholas Matijevich

    MATIJEVICH – Nicholas, 88, Johnstown, formerly of Pittsburgh, died July 28, 2014, at Windber Hospice.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Miller, Daisy Daisy "Doodles" Miller

    MILLER – Daisy “Doodles,”  aged 16 years, was released from this life into the next on Sunday, July 27, 2014, surrounded by her loving family, Dorene and Ian Miller, Andrea Brooks, and Jayme Brooks.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ethel M. Miller

    MILLER – Ethel M., 95, Ebensburg, formerly of Barnesboro, died July 29, 2014, at her home with her daughter, Patty, by her side.

    July 29, 2014

  • Peters, Andrea Andrea Lynn (Lonas) Peters

    PETERS – Andrea Lynn (Lonas), 46, Bolivar, passed into the arms of our Lord on July 28, 2014, in the palliative care unit of Conemaugh Valley Memorial Hospital.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mirrel Oliver Plummer Sr.

    PLUMMER – Mirrel Oliver Sr., 75, Portage, passed away July 27, 2014, at home.

    July 29, 2014

  • Mary Ann (Sedor) Shedlock

    SHEDLOCK – Mary Ann (Sedor),  87,  a resident of St. Benedict Manor, formerly of Revloc and Ebensburg, passed away July 28, 2014, at the manor.

    July 29, 2014

  • Today's Funerals July 30, 2014

    July 29, 2014

  • Bernat, Michele Michele L. Bernat

    BERNAT – Michele L., 45, Mundys Corner, passed away July 27, 2014, at Memorial Medical Center.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo


What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

     View Results