Ge­orge J. Kovich Jr.

MA­RINE CORPS OF­FI­CER

The Washington Post Sunday - - OBITUARIES - — Adam Bern­stein

Ge­orge J. Kovich Jr., 93, a re­tired Ma­rine Corps lieu­tenant colonel and a com­bat vet­eran of two wars, died Jan. 1 at his home in Sil­ver Spring. He had con­ges­tive heart fail­ure.

Col. Kovich joined the Ma­rine Corps in 1942. He served in the Pa­cific dur­ing World War II and par­tic­i­pated in the bat­tles of Tarawa and Iwo Jima. Dur­ing the Korean War, he par­tic­i­pated in the Chosin Reser­voir cam­paign.

He de­vel­oped a spe­cialty in heavy ar­tillery and bal­lis­tics. His fi­nal ac­tive-duty as­sign­ment, in the late 1960s, was at Quan­tico Ma­rine Base.

Af­ter mil­i­tary ser­vice, Col. Kovich spent about 15 years with IBM as a sys­tems an­a­lyst.

Ge­orge Joseph Kovich Jr. was born near Min­ersville, Pa., to East­ern Euro­pean im­mi­grants.

Af­ter com­plet­ing high school, he earned col­lege tu­ition fees by work­ing in a coal mine.

He re­ceived a bach­e­lor’s de­gree from what is now Kutz­town Uni­ver­sity of Penn­syl­va­nia. Years later, he was in­ducted into the school’s foot­ball hall of fame.

He re­ceived a mas­ter’s de­gree in ed­u­ca­tion from Cham­i­nade Uni­ver­sity in Honolulu dur­ing his mil­i­tary ca­reer.

He was a mem­ber of St. John the Bap­tist Catholic Church in Sil­ver Spring and the Amer­i­can Le­gion. He was an hon­orary life mem­ber of the Knights of Colum­bus.

He was a past vol­un­teer trea­surer for Sil­ver Spring Help, a so­cial ser­vice or­ga­ni­za­tion.

He grew toma­toes, green pep­pers and squash for his friends and neigh­bors.

Sur­vivors in­clude his wife of 65 years, El­iz­a­beth Sha­ef­fer Kovich of Sil­ver Spring; five daugh­ters, Kate Bun­nell of Salt Lake City, Kerry En­gle­hart of Las Ve­gas, Eileen Stone of My­ersville, Pa­tri­cia Brown of Ran­dall­stown, Md., and Jessie MacKin­non of Sil­ver Spring; 11 grand­chil­dren; 10 great-grand­chil­dren; and a great­great-grand­son.

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