Alvin Mikolajczyk, a former Toledo business owner and band leader who was an Army veteran of the Korean War, died Sunday in St. Clare Commons, Perrysburg. He was 88.
He died of an apparent congestive heart failure, his daughter, Julia Deal, said.
Mr. Mikolajczyk owned two full service gas stations — one in the Lagrange Street area and the other South Toledo — from the late 1950s through the early 1960s, when he sold them. He also worked in landscaping and sales for 35 years at Catholic Cemeteries of Toledo, most recently at Mount Carmel Cemetery also in Toledo, before retiring in 1991.
He played drums in several polka bands from the late 1940s through the mid-1970s. He started his own band, Musical Stars, in the mid-1960s. The band played through the mid-1970s at the former Gray’s Night Club on Detroit Avenue and at local festivals and weddings, his son said.
“He was a man of strong faith with a strong identification to his Polish heritage,” his daughter said. “His family was most important to him. He was a very generous man and he taught [his children] to share.”
Alvin Mikolajczyk, Jr., her brother, agreed, adding that he always brought a smile to the room, and especially liked to make the girls laugh.”
Mr. Mikolajczyk was born March 6, 1929 in in Toledo into the family of Benedict and Anna Mikolajczyk.
He went to Libbey High School for a time until January of 1951, when he volunteered to serve in the Army. He served in Korea until October of 1952, when he received his honorable discharge with the rank of corporal.
After the service, Mr. Mikolajczyk returned to Toledo and bought a gas station in South Toledo, adding a second station later.
In 1957, he married the former Ruth Ciesinski. They had seven children. She survives.
In retirement, Mr. Mikolajczyk enjoyed playing cards and fishing at Long Lake in southwest Michigan, where he had a summer house. He also raised pigeons and chickens at his Monclova Township house, where he lived with his wife since he retired.
A man of deep faith, he was a member of Saints Adalbert & Hedwig Parish, Toledo.
His other memberships included the Argonne American Legion Post 545 and the Knights of Columbus, where he earned the rank of fourth degree.
He was preceded in death by a brother and a sister.
Surviving are his wife of nearly 60 years, Ruth; sons, Alvin Mikolajczyk, Jr., and Joseph Mikolajczyk; daughters, Mary Morrison, Christine Filzer, Kathleen Bench, Julia Deal, and Jennifer Villa; brothers, James and David Mikolajczyk; sister, Joyce Lorenz, and 13 grandchildren.
Visitation will be at 6 p.m. Wednesday and at 2 p.m. Thursday, both at the W.K. Sujkowski & Son Funeral Home, 3838 Airport Hwy., with a recitation of the Rosary at 7 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home.
Services will be at 11:30 a.m. Friday at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, 6149 Hill Ave.
The family suggests tributes to the American Legion.
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