Bennington, VT – Joseph L Krawczyk, Jr, 74, passed away on December 13th, 2022 at the Southwestern Vermont Medical Center. He was born in Bennington on December 24th, 1947, the first son of Joseph L. Krawczyk Sr. and Madeleine (Chenaille) Krawczyk.
He attended elementary school at St. Francis de Sales Academy, and graduated from Bennington Catholic High School in 1965. As a youngster, he played Little League Baseball with the Norshaft Dodgers and basketball with the Saint Francis CYO. During his high school years, Joe played baseball and football for Bennington Catholic High School and basketball at the local YMCA.
At the age of 13, he was employed at Peter’s Ice Cream Shop, initially as a dishwasher and later learning the skills of making ice cream and candy. During his high school years, scheduling around the athletic seasons, he was employed at the then Putnam Memorial Hospital, Cushman’s Furniture, and as a carpenter’s helper for Chenaille Brothers Construction. After graduating from high school at the age of 17, Joe attended Murray State University in Murray, Kentucky, for three semesters.
At the age of 19, he was drafted into the United States Army as a private and was trained as an Armored Cavalry Reconnaissance Scout. In 1968, after attending Officer Candidate School at Fort Knox, Kentucky, Joe was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Armored Cavalry and assigned as a Calvary Platoon Leader in the Republic of Vietnam in 1969-1970. While serving in combat, Joe was awarded the Silver Star for Gallantry in Action, four Bronze Stars for Heroism and two Purple Hearts for wounds he received in action. Joe’s other military awards received during his distinguished career are the Legion of Merit with one oak leaf cluster, the Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters, Army Accommodation Medal with five oak leaf clusters, and the Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm. He is a Bronze Medal recipient of the Order of Saint George, the Patron Saint of the Cavalry, a Silver Medal recipient of the Order of Saint Barbara, Patron Saint of the Artillery, and a member of the Order of de Fleury, awarded for his support of the Army Corps of Combat Engineers.
During his distinguished career in the military, Representative Krawczyk commanded combat units at every level, from Platoon to the largest Armored Brigade Combat Team in the Army. He retired from the Army at the rank of Colonel in 1994 and returned to Bennington.
Joe served on the Bennington Select Board from 2001-2013. He was also the President of the Board of Trustees for the Vermont Veterans Home from 2010-2022. Joseph was elected in 2002 to the Vermont State House of Representatives from Bennington District 2-1 and served four terms, with his last position being the vice chairman of the House of Natural Resources and Energy Committee. He had also served as the Chairman of Governor Douglas’ Veterans Advisory Council, a position he held for six years. Representative Krawczyk was a life member of the Disabled American Veterans, Chapter 4, the Military Order of the Purple Heart, a life member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1332, American Legion Post 13, the Vietnam Veterans of America, Elks Lodge 365 and a member of the Catamount Rotary. Colonel Krawczyk spent his entire life serving his country, his state, and his community.
Joseph is survived by his wife, Dolores Krawczyk (Flores), his two daughters, Jacqueline (Michael) Segura, and Michelle Krawczyk (Daniel D’Silva), and his four step children, Morgan Vertrees, Meredith (Samuel) Eddy, David (Maria) Wagner, and Cindy Madden. He is survived by his five grandchildren: Morgaine (Charles) Segura Martin, Romeo Segura, Diamond Segura, Brontë Segura, and Oliver D’Silva, two step-grandchildren, David (Cami) Madden and Joseph (Julie) Madden, a great grandchild, Mila Martin, and six step-great grandchildren, Charlotte Madden, Grace Madden, Conor Madden, Landry Madden, Aiden Madden, and Hazel Madden. Joseph is also survived by six siblings: George Krawczyk, Judy (John) Kohutich, Alan (Ruth) Krawczyk, Chuck Krawczyk, David (Kerry) Krawczyk, and Annette (Paul) Shine. He is also survived by many nieces, nephews and cousins.
Joseph was predeceased by his parents, Joseph L. Krawczyk Sr. and Madeleine Chenaille, and a sister, Donna Maxon.
Friends are invited to call at the Mahar and Son Funeral Home on Sunday, December 18th, 2022 from 2-4pm.
A funeral mass will be held on Monday, December 19th, 2022 at 11:00am at Sacred Heart Saint Frances DeSales Church. Joseph will be interred at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in honor of Joseph may be made to the Vermont Veterans Home through the office of the Mahar and Son Funeral Home 628 Main St. Bennington, VT 05201.
Online guestbook condolences may be made at www.maharandsonfuneralhome.net
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