JACKSONVILLE, N.C. - Sgt. Philip John Pekarske, formerly of Fayetteville, was called to a higher duty on Wednesday, April 27, 2011.
Born on April 7, 1985 in Glendale Heights, Ill., he was the son of John and Estella Pekarske of Jefferson. Philip was a loving and supportive husband, son, brother and friend. He was a 2003 graduate of Fayette County High School. He joined the United States Marine Corps on November 28, 2004. He was attached to the 2nd Amphibious Assault Battalion and proudly served two tours in Iraq. On November 11, 2006, Philip received the Navy Marine Corps Achievement Medal for superior performance of his duties in Iraq. He was a very dedicated and determined man. He spent his summers working with the Amigos for Christ program in Nicaragua. He had a huge heart and showed it in many ways. His grandfathers, Anthony T. Smith, John Anthony Pekarske, and Carlos Garcia, preceded Philip in death.
Survivors in addition to his parents include his wife, Melanie Gribben Pekarske, Jacksonville, N.C.; a brother, Adam Pekarske, Revere, Mass.; grandmothers, Maria Smith, Good Thunder, Minn., and Eunice Pekarske, Manitowoc, Wis.; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Earl and Cindy Gribben, Fayetteville; sister-in-law, Melissa Gribben, Fayetteville; brother-in-law, Tyler Gribben, Fayetteville; and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins.
A Funeral Mass was held on Wednesday, May 4, at the Catholic Church of St. Gabriel with Father Jimmy Adams officiating.
Memorial contributions may be made in Philip’s honor to the Amigos For Christ Foundation, in care of Father Jimmy Adams at Holy Trinity Catholic Church, 101 Walt Banks Rd., Peachtree City, GA 30269.
Mowell Funeral Home, Fayetteville, was in charge of arrangements