John F. Jureka – Colonel, United States Air Force

From a contemporary press report:

John F. Jureka, 77, a retired Air Force colonel who was a World War II B-24 pilot and second commander of World Wide Air Force Postal and Courier Service, died of cardiac arrest April 19, 1999 at Inova Fairfax Hospital. He lived in Springfield, Virginia.

Colonel Jureka, a native of St. Louis, served 32 years in the Air Force. He began his military career in World War II as a B-24 pilot with the 455th Bomb Group of the 15th Army Air Forces in Italy.

By war’s end, he had flown 35 missions. After reverting to the rank of master sergeant, he received a commission in the Air Force in 1947, which was followed by personnel administrative assignments in Okinawa and various cities across the United States.

For three years before his retirement in 1974, he was second commander of the Air Force postal service.

He then worked about 10 years as a real estate agent with the firm of Lewis and Silverman in Springfield.

He was a lector and eucharistic minister at St. Bernadette Catholic Church in Springfield and a 3rd degree member of Knights of Columbus.

Survivors include his wife of 54 years, Mary E. Jureka of Springfield; four children, Sandra J. Coppinger of Bethesda, John F. Jureka Jr. of Alexandria, Jerard Jureka of Marion, Ind., and Elisabeth M. Gildea of Raleigh, N.C.; and seven grandchildren.


On Monday, April 19, 1999, at Fairfax Hospital. Beloved husband of Mary E. Jureka; loving father of Sandra J. Coppinger, John F. Jureka, Jr., Jerard J. Jureka and Elisabeth M. Gildea; brother of Robert T., Mary Elizabeth, Donald J. and Dorothy J. Jureka. Also survived by seven grandchldren. Graveside service will be held on Tuesday, May 11 at 11 a.m. at Arlington National Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to Catholic Masses or to the American Heart, Lung or Kidney Foundations.

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