We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at Cremation & Funeral Service by Gary S. Silvat, Inc.
On Friday, May 20, 2022, Joseph J. Holzer Jr., 85, of Columbiana, OH, passed away peacefully at home with his four children by his side. He was born in Pittsburgh, PA on January 4, 1937 to Joseph and Mary (Novak) Holzer.
Joe is survived by his beloved children, Keith (Saskia) Holzer of Harrisonburg, VA, Kimberly (Gary S. Silvat) Holzer of Columbiana, OH, Lisa (Joseph) Burns of Greencastle, PA, and Colleen (John) Herbert of Columbiana, OH ; grandchildren, Anika, Hans, Helene and Mattias Holzer, all of Harrisonburg, VA, Connor and Cailyn Silvat of Columbiana, OH, Maylis and Joseph Burns of Greencastle, PA, and Josh and Paige Herbert of Columbiana, OH; sister and brothers-in-law, Susan (David) Kulick, Frederick (Dolly) Weis and David Weis, all of Pittsburgh, PA; maternal aunt, Johanna (Novak) Poljack of Pittsburgh, PA; and many nieces and nephews. Besides his parents, Joe was preceded in death by his wife of fifty-three years, Marilyn (Weis) Holzer, on May 24, 2014, and his brother, Ronald (the late Eileen) Holzer.
Joe learned masonry and graduated from Connelly Technical School in Pittsburgh. He then honorably served his country in the United States Marine Corps from August 1955 until August 1959. It was his good fortune to meet Marilyn at an Eat’n Park restaurant, and were later married on May 6, 1961. The couple first lived in Carrick, then in Dormont, PA, where they raised their four children. Joe was employed as an Auto-Messenger for Mellon Bank for thirty-five years until he retired. For years, he also had his own business washing walls and painting houses throughout the South Hills area of Pittsburgh to support his family. In 2007, Joe and Marilyn built a home and retired in Columbiana, OH. Despite the move to Ohio, he continued to be the avid Pittsburgh sports fan that he always was.
Although he enjoyed masonry, his passion was woodworking. Joe relished being able to remodel and build furniture. His craftmanship lives on in the cherished items that he made for his grandchildren, including the handmade bassinets that he built so that each of them could sleep next to their parents’ beds during the first months of their lives, safe and loved. As his grandchildren grew, he gifted each of them with a chair-step stool to help stand a little taller while they were brushing their teeth, or as a place to sit and read. Marilyn hand painted cartoon characters and each child’s name across the back. The grandchildren also enjoyed a beautiful rocking horse, complete with a leather padded seat and a faux mane.
“Once a Marine, always a Marine.” The Marines Corps was the recipient of numerous chair-step stools for its annual Toys for Tots campaign, a little-known fact which Joe and Marilyn were very proud to do.
As lifelong Catholics, Joe and Marilyn were married at and were members of St. Basil Church in Carrick, PA, and later as members of St. Catherine of Siena in Beechview, PA and St. Jude in Columbiana, OH where Joe was a money counter and a member of the Knights of Columbus.
Viewing and the receiving of friends will be held at Cremation & Funeral Service by Gary S. Silvat, Inc., 3896 Oakwood Ave., Austintown, OH 44515 on Monday, May 23, 2022 from 4:00 to 8:00 pm, and continue on Tuesday, May 24, 2022 from 10:00 am until the time of Mass at 11:00 am, St. Jude Church, 180 7th St., Columbiana, OH 44408. Military Honors for Joe will immediately follow the Funeral Mass. He will be laid to rest with Marilyn on June 1, 2022 at the National Cemetery of the Alleghenies, Cecil Township, PA.
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