Daniel David Pjesky
Daniel David Pjesky, 97, of Grand Haven, Mich., passed away peacefully in the arms of his loving Savior on Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2019.
He was born on Aug. 27, 1922, in Moundridge, Kan., to German immigrant parents, the late Gustav and Olga (Schulz) Pjesky. At the age of 2, he moved with his family to Benton Harbor, where he lived for 60 years. A devout Lutheran, Christ was always his cornerstone. From childhood through adulthood, he was active at St. Mathew’s Lutheran Church in Benton Harbor, and most recently, St. John’s Lutheran Church, Grand Haven. Along with his faith and family, sports were a big part of Dan’s life, especially basketball. Dan graduated from Benton Harbor High School, class of 1941, and was part of the BHHS state championship basketball team with Coach Perrigo. Dan went on to play basketball at Michigan State College until joining the Army Infantry 30th Division, 119th Regiment, in 1943. He went ashore at Omaha Beach a few days after D-Day and fought through France, the Netherlands and Belgium. Dan was wounded in Aachen by shrapnel from German Tiger tank fire, and was one of the very few to survive from his platoon.
He met the love of his life, Jane Wormwood, who tended to him as his nurse at Olin Health Center, after a basketball knee injury. They married in 1947 and celebrated 71 years of marriage. Dan was a skilled carpenter and woodworker, building homes in the Benton Harbor/St. Joseph area, and later transitioned into real estate and retail sales. He retired in 1986, and Dan and his wife enjoyed many years of joy and new friends while traveling the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Europe in their VW camper vans and Avion travel trailer. Dan and his wife enjoyed 26 years living in Arizona, where Dan built their homes in Prescott and Yuma. They moved to Grand Haven in 2013 to be closer to family.
Dan will be missed and remembered by many. He is survived by his wife, Jane; son, Steven (Sandra) Pjesky of Wisconsin; daughter, Donna (Michael) Zambetis of Grand Haven; grandchildren: Scott (Chelsey) Pjesky, Shawn (Kirsten) Pjesky, Ryan (Elizabeth) Pjesky, Kristine (Bryant) Marchese, Kathy (Daniel) Martin, John Halvarson, Evan (Amanda) Zambetis and Patra Jane Zambetis; 14 great-grandchildren: Sydney, Hannah, Macey, Carter, Dylan and Penelope Pjesky, Savannah, Bryant and Cameron Marchese, and Teigan, Danica, Marley Jane, Azlynn Martin and Greyson Zambetis; and brother-in-law, Pete Headle.
Dan was preceded in death and reunited with his daughter, Mary Jane Halvarson; six sisters: Theresa (Rein) Bruder, Rose (Henry) Schermer, Esther Fredrich, Frieda (Dorval) Cole, Martha (Wink) Gorton and Shirley Headle; and three brothers: Ted (Marie) Pjesky, Adolph (Alma) Pjesky and Alfred (Lois) Pjesky.
The funeral service for Dan will be at 11 a.m. Monday, Sept. 9, at St. John’s Lutheran Church, with Pastor Kurt Wenzelburger officiating. Visitation will be held from 2-4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 8, at Klaassen Family Funeral Home, and from 10-11 a.m. on Monday at the church. Memorial contributions may be made to St. John’s Lutheran Church or School. Please visit www.klaassenfuneralhome.com to sign Dan’s online guest book.