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William E. “Bill” Abramowicz, a celebrated Berks County teacher, school administrator, husband, father, and friend died Friday, February 3, 2023 at 6:10 p.m. in Reading Hospital where he had been a patient since January 30, 2023.
He was 94.
He was a long-time resident of Pennside, Lower Alsace Township, and had been living in Exeter Township the past few years.
Born in Shenandoah, Schuylkill County, he was the son of the late Anna (Narusiewicz) Kashner and the late Michael Abramowicz.
He was married to Joyce M. (Long) Abramowicz for 66 years.
He was a long-time member of St. Catharine of Siena R.C. Church, Mount Penn and Exeter Township, and was among the first class of lay extraordinary ministers of the Eucharist commissioned by the Diocese of Allentown for service in the church.
He was a 1946 graduate of Summit Hill High School, Carbon County, and entered St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Lower Merion, to study for the priesthood. There he earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and completed post-graduate courses in theology.
Bill left the seminary and came to Reading in 1954 where he started teaching at Reading Central Catholic High School. He later taught at Oley Valley High School before joining the Muhlenberg School District in 1959 as a high school English teacher.
He was fondly referred to as “Mr. A” by his students and staff.
Bill completed post-graduate education classes at Lehigh University, Bethlehem, and obtained a principal’s certification and completed courses for a doctorate in education.
He served as assistant principal at Muhlenberg High School and was later assigned to develop the middle school program for the Muhlenberg School District and served as the first principal of the former C.E. Cole Middle School.
He was later appointed assistant superintendent for the Muhlenberg School District, retiring in 1983.
In the ensuing years, Bill worked for the Bridgeview Pet Cemetery, Gibraltar.
He also joined Bean Funeral Homes as a part-time funeral assistant and worked at the various Bean funeral home locations for a number of years.
A few years after his retirement from Muhlenberg, Bill decided to return to the classroom and taught sixth-, seventh- and eighth-grade students at the former Cabrini Academy, Reading. He spent 16 years there, retiring from the classroom for the last time in 2003.
He called his experiences at Cabrini Academy the most enjoyable of his educational career.
Outside his early classroom and administrative career, Bill worked part-time during the mid-1950s as a grocery clerk for the former A & P Market, on Penn Street in Reading.
He later worked during the 1960s, as a part-time produce clerk in the former Acme Markets Laureldale store at Fifth Street and Bellevue Avenue, Muhlenberg Township.
Bill was a fixture at the annual church bazaars on the St. Catharine of Siena school grounds in Mount Penn where he circulated among the various stands collecting their proceeds for the counting room.
He also worked for several years on the volunteer counting room staff at the church, helping tally the weekly Sunday contributions.
In recent years, he enjoyed spending time with his wife, Joyce, children, grandchildren and great-grandson. He was very devoted to a life of prayer, his Catholic faith, and St. Catharine of Siena Church.
In addition to his wife, he is survived by five children: Mark, husband of Suzanna M. (Miller) Abramowicz, of Pennside; Anne (Abramowicz), wife of Dr. Craig Hurtt, West Vincent Township, Chester Springs, Chester County; Mary (Abramowicz) Bowers, of Reading; Jan Abramowicz, of Mount Penn; and Jeanne (Abramowicz), wife of Brock DeSantis, of San Diego, California.
He also is survived by seven grandchildren – Josh, Amy, Jonathan, Jordan, Christopher, Justin and Andrew; and one great-grandchild – James - and several nieces and nephews.
Also, one sister, Christina, wife of George Skovran, Jensen Beach, Florida.
He was pre-deceased by five sisters: Dorothy, Theresa, Jean, Joan and Maryanne.
Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at Saint Catharine of Siena Roman Catholic Church 4975 Boyertown Pike, Exeter Township, Saturday, February 11, 2023 at 10:00 am. Monsignor Edward R. Domin and Reverend Brian M. Miller, Celebrants. Interment will follow at Forest Hills Memorial Park. The family will receive relatives and friends at Bean Funeral Home, 6 Fairlane Road, Exeter Township, Friday, February 10, 2023 from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm and on Saturday from 9:15 am to 9:45 am at Saint Catharine of Siena Roman Catholic Church. In lieu of flowers contributions may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105 in memory of Mr. William E. Abramowicz. Online condolences may be made at www.beanfuneralhomes.com
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