Joseph F. Koczera, age 92, went home to the Lord on March 22, 2018.
Joseph was born in Ambridge, Pennsylvania, in 1926, to the late John and Frances (Walter) Koczera, Joseph’s early life involved assisting his father, who was a steel mill crane operator. After some local shipyard experience, he entered the Army, serving honorably in the Signal Corps.
After moving to Columbus, he was briefly employed at the Ohio Theatre as head usher. He also used his carpentry skills in the local housing market. His most extensive and rewarding career began in 1951, when he started working in the military aircraft industry at North American/Rockwell in Columbus. Joseph’s first project there was the F-86 Sabre fighter jet. This is the plane Marine officer (and future astronaut) John Glenn flew serving our country. Many safety and service awards, along with faithful blood donor contributions were part of his loyal “on-time” 38-year service record. The B-1 Bomber was his last aircraft project prior to retiring in 1988.
Joseph and his loving wife, Jacqueline, who passed away in 1996, enjoyed music, dancing, and bowling. Moving to Thornville in 1961 to their family farm, together they had the pleasure of growing many exotic vegetables in their wonderful garden. Their children were blessed to enjoy fresh milk, the joy of many cats, dogs, and 4-H horses, including favorites, Liz, Penny, Katie, Sandy, Boomer and Buffy. Joseph always enjoyed picking berries by the bucketful after work in the summer and Joseph’s coffee cups would be found scattered throughout the farm, highlighting his love of coffee and being outside. Joseph’s fondness for his grandchildren, chicken soup, and Tootsie Rolls remained until the end.
He was preceded in death by his parents; step-mother; two brothers; three sisters; in-laws, John and Lora Rossi; step-daughter, Launa; and grandson, Tommy Boyd.
Joseph is survived by his loving caretaker and daughter, Cindy Jo Fields; her son, Jason Fields and his wife Elizabeth, along with their beautiful children, Emma, Noah and Georgia Mae; step-son, David Thomas Boyd and his wife Pat, and daughter Angel; step-grandchildren, Wesley Boyd, Stacy Rine, and Matthew Rine; Colorado great-grandchildren, Daylan and Hayden Rine; and great-great granddaughter, Genevieve Rine.
Sincere gratitude is expressed to his very kind and loving neighbors, Janet and Mike Slonaker, who were always there for Joseph when needed. Thank you to the FairHope Hospice staff for helping to navigate Joseph’s final days; to our church family; and to friends for their comforting prayers.
No viewing will be observed. Family and close friends will gather for a private graveside memorial service at Fairmount Cemetery on March 29, 2018.
Joseph requested that any memorial contributions be made to his grandchildren’s college fund. Contact Jason Fields via email@example.com or 614.975.4611 to contribute.
Hoskinson Funeral & Cremation Service in Thornville is honored to care for Joseph and his family.