Cover photo for Richard J. Szelong's Obituary
Richard J. Szelong Profile Photo
1958 Richard 2021

Richard J. Szelong

August 18, 1958 — December 7, 2021

Szelong, Richard J. “Ric”, 63, entered his eternal rest on December 7, 2021 following a hard-fought battle with pancreatic cancer. Born August 18, 1958, he was the son of the late Zigmund and Betty (Zeoli) Szelong. In addition to his parents, he is preceded in death by infant son, Aaron Szelong; brother-in-law, David Frank, mother-in-law, Phyllis Frank; aunts and uncles Carl and Geni Casale and Paul and Joyce Frank, and cousin Mary Gregory. He is survived by his wife of 36 years, the former Brenda Frank; son Joshua and his fiancé, Alyssa Rouser; daughter Sarah and her companion, Brandon Schuerman; brother Ron (Jennifer) Szelong; sister, Angie McDaniel; father-in-law, Richard Frank; sister-in-law, Janet (Frank) Colwell; niece and goddaughter, Abby Szelong; niece Cody (Chet) Ball; nephew Jesse (Nicole) Frank; great nephew, Terrin Frank; great niece, Avery Ball, his furever friend, Luna Doodle, grand-dogs, Sara and Molly and grand-bunny, Pumpkin. Also survived by aunts and uncles, AJ and Toni Hozempa and Cliff and Darlene Fligger and by cousins Margie (Greg) McGee, Kathy Casale, Michael Frank and Susan Frank as well as a host of neighbors, friends and colleagues who showed him so much love and kindness during this journey. Ric was a 1976 graduate of Richland High School. In 1982, he earned a bachelor of arts degree in journalism and in 1985 earned a bachelor of arts degree in secondary education from the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown. He taught English at United High School in Armagh, PA for 32 years, retiring in 2017. In addition to teaching at United, he served as the yearbook advisor, public relations liaison and junior high football coach. He was also the Chairperson of the English Department for many years until his retirement. He was his children’s biggest fan and loved coaching them in many sports during their childhood. He served as an officer for many years in the Arbutus Youth Baseball League. He enjoyed any beach vacation, but especially traveling to Punta Cana and loved strolling through the neighborhood with his Luna girl. The family welcomes visitation on Sunday Dec. 12, from 2-8 pm at the Harris Funeral Home, 500 Cherry Lane, Richland where Vigil Service will be held. Funeral Mass will be held on Monday Dec. 13, at 10:30 am at St. Benedict Catholic Church, Geistown. Fr. David S. Peles, Pastor. Committal will be at Richland Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests making a contribution to either St. Benedict Catholic Church, 2310 Bedford St. Johnstown, PA 15904 or Windber Hospice, 600 Somerset Ave., Windber, PA 15963 in memory of Ric. (Online condolences may be posted to www.wharrisfuneralhome.com)

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