Stephen Palkovic, 89, WWII Seabee, Warwick H.S. athletic director, Lititz Record sports editor, active in Lititz community

By on February 1, 2017

Stephen Joseph Palkovic, of Lititz, passed away on Jan. 29, 2017, at the age of 89.

Born in Lebanon, he was the son of the late Paul and Mary Palkovic. His wife, of 64 years, preceded him in death four months ago.

He was a faithful and active member of the Catholic faith. He started as an altar server at St. Cyril’s in Lebanon, and was part of the building committee for St. James Catholic Church, Lititz, where he served as an usher and was on numerous committees.

Steve was a graduate of Lebanon High School and joined the Navy in 1944. After serving in the Seabees during World War II, he returned to Pennsylvania to attend Millersville University. He graduated with a math and science degree and taught at Lebanon Catholic High School for three years. He then accepted a job in the Manheim Township School District, where he coached the football, wrestling, and started the golf team. He came to Warwick in 1967 after obtaining his master’s degree in counseling and clinical psychology. He was the Warwick athletic director, and helped form the girls’ softball team. He also officiated high school and college wrestling and high school football.

Steve was actively in the Lititz community. While president of the Lititz Jaycees, he formed a committee to ask the Lititz Borough to build a pool. After four years and many fundraisers, the Lititz Springs Pool was built, where he was the manager for many years. For 19 years he served as the chairperson for the 4th of July Queen of Candles ceremony. He served as president of the Lititz Lions Club, Lititz Jaycees, Lititz Springs Board of Trustees, and the Lititz Community Center.

Steve was also the sports editor of the Lititz Record Express, where he wrote four pages of sports each week. He enjoyed writing his own editorial column “Sports World” and picking the athlete of the week.

After retiring from teaching after 35 years, he could be found helping out at the Lititz Springs Park, cleaning the fountain at the square, or spending time with his two grandchildren.

In Steve’s free time he enjoyed spending time with his family and did many activities with them. He earned his flying license and flew his family down to the beach. He owned a sailboat and sailed on the Chesapeake for many years. Where he took his family to Annapolis and Baltimore and sailed the inland waterway to Wildwood and Atlantic City. Many weekends you could find him on the ski slope with his family.

He will be truly missed by his daughter: Beth Ann (Palkovic) Needelman; son-in-law: Robert Needelman, Lititz; and two grandsons: Michael and Matthew Needelman. He was preceded in death by his son: Dr. Stephen Palkovic.

Graveside services will be held Saturday, Feb. 4, at 11 a.m., at St. Joseph New Catholic Cemetery, Bausman, with Father James O’Blaney officiating.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in Stephen’s memory may be made to Lititz Springs Park, P.O. Box 110, Lititz, PA 17543.

To send online condolences, visit Spacht-Snyder Family Funeral Home & Crematory, Lititz, handled the arrangements.

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  1. matthew shannon

    February 1, 2017 at 10:33 am

    Steve was a wonderful, loving man. I often saw him at Luther Acres when visiting my mom. Many called him the mayor. He spread joy and cheer. He will be greatly missed.

  2. Robin Gernert

    February 1, 2017 at 5:24 pm

    Mr. Palkovic was a very supportive, staff person during some difficult times at my years at Warwick. He will be missed by many. My prayers are to my fellow student Beth Ann and to the others in the family and friends.

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