Joseph V. Eckman, 94 of Scottdale and formerly of Everson, where he formerly served as Mayor and was a longtime community servant, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly, Sunday morning, March 27, 2022 in Excela Health Frick Hospital, Mt. Pleasant.
Joe was born on September 16, 1927, a Son of the late Joseph and Dora Cramer Eckman and was raised in Everson, Pennsylvania. At the age of 17, he enlisted in the United States Navy during World War II. While in the Navy, Joe attended The Air Technical Training Center and earned his education for Aviation Metal Machinist while stationed in the Aleutian Islands. He flew reconnaissance missions over Adec, Dutch Harbor, Attu and Kodiak Islands. He was awarded The American Theater Medal, The Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal, and The Victory Medal.
Upon returning home from the Navy, Joe enrolled in barber school, and for a short time worked alongside his brother Ed in Eckman's Barber Shop, Everson. Also, he continued his career at Robertshaw Controls where he retired as a key inspector after 48 years.
Community was important in Joe's life, and he served his community for nearly his entire life. His service began with scouting. He joined the Boy Scouts at age 11 where he obtained the rank of Star Scout. He was a patrol leader and a senior patrol leader until leaving for the Navy. He returned to scouting and became the Scout Leader of Everson Troop 160 and was also a member of The Order of the Arrow. He oversaw the founding of the first Cub Scout pack in Everson. He enjoyed taking the troop to Camp Conestoga along with bus trips to Forbes Field and Gettysburg.
Joe served as president of Everson's Borough Council before being elected as Mayor. He remained the Mayor for 16 years. As Mayor he helped reorganize The Everson Civic Association and the Senior Citizens group. He received grants for community projects and was proud to obtain funds to maintain the Everson Christmas lights many years ago. He was also instrumental with the Honor Roll and Veterans Memorial.
At a young age he was elected to the school board for The Scottdale School District. During this time, Scottdale and East Huntingdon formed the jointure which is presently Southmoreland School District. In 1989, he returned to the school board and remained there for 20 years. He also served on the boards for Westmoreland Intermediate Unit, Southwest Regional Tax Bureau, and Fayette County SPCA.
Joe was a member of the Masonic Lodge #562, Free and Accepted Masons. He was awarded The Scouters Key and The Daniel Carter Beard Award, national scouting awards. He was a lifetime member of The Everson VFW Hamilton-Maloy Post 595 and the Scottdale American Legion. He remained active with both the Everson and Connellsville Senior's groups. He served as president and tour director for both groups. He planned many bus trips to the casinos. Some referred to these trips as Joe's Brigade.
Joe received many awards throughout the years. Most recently he was inducted into the PA Voter Hall of fame for having voted at every November election for the last 50 years which demonstrated his commitment to democracy.
In addition to his parents, Joe was predeceased in 1990 by his wife of 40 years, Sarah Louise Eckman (Hendricks), brother Edward Eckman and sister Louise Livingood.
Joe will forever remain in the hearts of his children: Joseph Eckman (Jane) of Port Orange FL, Janis Pajak of Scottdale, and Bonnie Avolio (David) of Myrtle Beach SC. He was most proud of his grandchildren: Jason and Justin Eckman, Matthew Halfhill, Jeffrey Bedont, Joshua Pajak, and Meggie Shoemaker (Pajak). Joe had 9 great grandchildren.
There will be no public viewing. Joe’s arrangements have been entrusted to the Frank Kapr Funeral Home, Inc. 417 Pittsburgh St. Scottdale, Pa. 15683.
Inurnment will take place in the Scottdale Cemetery, next to his wife Sarah, with full Military Honors to be accorded at the gravesite by the Scottdale Everson Honor Guard at a later date, to be announced.
Joe took great pride in serving God, his country, and his community. His life can be celebrated by donating to The Everson Boy Scout Troop 160 or The Connellsville Senior Center. Boy Scout contributions can be made to: Boy Scout Troop 160 c/o Jason Ware, 1002 George St. Scottdale, PA 15683. Senior Center Contributions can be made to: Connellsville Area Senior Citizens Center, 100 East Fayette St. Connellsville, PA 15425
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