2007-09-19 / Obituaries

John W. Zuvic, Sr.

John W. Zuvic, Sr., age 85, of Cold Spring, passed away on Friday September 14, 2007 in Middletown, DE, surrounded by his family.

Born in Brooklyn, NY on September 19, 1921, he was the son of the late Nicholas and Helen (Turcic) Zuvic. He was the widower of the late Frances Emily Court who pre-deceased him in 1993.

Mr. Zuvic was a retired "able-bodied" Seaman with Mobil Oil Corporation in New York, NY. He was a Coast Guard and Merchant Marine Veteran of WW II and a member of James Harvey Hustis Post #2362 VFW.

When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, instead of going to Florida for his tryout with the Washington Senators, he went and signed with the US Coast Guard. At twenty-one he already had experience on tugboats and a season with the Hudson River Dayliner the Hendricks Hudson, so he skipped apprentice and made second-class seaman. A couple of years later he found himself part of the rescue flotilla "that morning" covering fifty miles of five beachheads from Le Havre to Normandy. They "picked up over fifteen hundred GIs, out of the water, that morning alone". That was 1944, and a long way from the farmlands of Queens, John Adams High School, Ebbetts Field and Monahan's. He stayed on the waters after the war. In 1947 he was directly involved in the successful rescue effort by the US Army transport Charles A. Stafford of the crew of the Portuguese fishing Schooner, the Maria Carlota. At the time, being single, he volunteered over the married men to be one of the seven men in the rescue lifeboat. They had to brave thirty to forty foot seas to rescue the entire crew of thirtyone fishermen. His travels took him throughout the North and South Atlantic, from Greenland to Antarctica, Germany, through Panama to San Francisco, and a few ports in between.

For the last sixteen years of his career he worked the Northeastern seaboard, from New Jersey to the Great Lakes. From time to time his small tanker the Chicago would tie up at the oil dock and make a delivery to Cold Spring. His love of God, family, and country always brought him home safely with many treasured stories. He spent the last twenty-plus years "taking it easy" between the Village and Lake Valhalla. He enjoyed being with the guys, hanging out down by the river, following the Yankees, and being Grandpa.

He is survived by three sons, John W. Zuvic, Jr. of Cold Spring, NY, Mark Zuvic of Kingston, NY, Thomas Zuvic of Brandon, MS, and one daughter, Mary Zuvic of Middletown, DE. Thirteen grandchildren and five great grand children also survive. He was pre-deceased by his daughter Helen Zuvic in 1968 and two brothers, Anthony and Nicholas Zuvic.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held on Tuesday September 18, 2007 at Our Lady of Loretto Church, 24 Fair St., Cold Spring, followed by interment in Cold Spring Cemetery. Funeral arrangements were made through the Clinton Funeral Home, 21 Parrott St., Cold Spring.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Mr. Zuvic's name to Hospice of Dutchess County, 374 Violet Ave, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601.

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