Steve Frank Novotny, 94, was born in Johnstown, PA, March 28, 1924, and died peacefully in Hendersonville, NC, on Friday, October 26, 2018.
Mr. Novotny was preceded in death by his parents, Stephen Frank Novotny and Anna Missinay Novotny; three brothers, Joe Novotny, Albert Novotny and Frank Novotny; a sister, Helen Novotny Gallus; and by his wife of 43 years, Ruth Caldwell Novotny.
He is survived by his daughter, Mary Lee Holder and her husband Dan, of Hendersonville; granddaughter, Amy Staton and her husband Keith and their daughters Emily and Laura; granddaughter, Julie Huntley and her husband Rodney, and their sons Chase and Logan; three sisters, Mary Plonka, of Sterling Heights, MI, Kay Stehnach, of Conemaugh, PA, and Margaret Hawk and her husband Gerald, of Bedford, PA. He is also survived by many nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews. He was lovingly referred to as Uncle Peewee and Pappy by so many.
Mr. Novotny grew up in Johnstown, PA, He joined the Navy in 1942 and was a veteran of both WWII and the Korean War. He was one of 400 surviving crew members of the Naval Carrier U.S.S. Bismark Sea when it was attacked and sunk by kamikaze fighters during the battle of Iwo Jima. He left the Navy in 1945 as a Petty Officer Third Class. In 1948, Mr. Novotny rejoined the military by serving as a Sergeant First Class in the United States Army. He was stationed mainly in Germany (Bad Kreuznach base and others). While serving in Germany, he was awarded an Army Commendation Medal and served as an Intel Specialist. While state-side, he was stationed at Fort Knox, KY and Fort Meade, MD, where he met his wife, Ruth. They married in May, 1959. He retired from the Army as Master Sergeant in 1965. He and Ruth then moved to Candler, NC, and built their home.
Mr. Novotny worked for BASF in Security once he left the military. He and Ruth were active members of Oak Forest Presbyterian Church. He was also an active member of the Enka-Candler Lions Club for many years. Following his wife’s death in 2002, he returned to the Catholic Church and became active at St. Joan of Arc and maintained membership in the Knights of Columbus.
A Funeral Mass will be celebrated by the Rev. Fr. Dean Cesa at 7:00 p.m. Monday, November 5, 2018, at St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church.
A graveside service will be held at 1:00 p.m. Saturday, November 10, 2018, at Oak Forest Presbyterian Church Cemetery, with the Rev. Fr. Dean Cesa and the Rev. Tammy Bales officiating. Burial will follow in the church cemetery, reuniting with his wife.
The family will receive friends following the graveside service.
The family requests that in lieu of flowers, memorials be made to the Enka-Candler Lions Club, 89 Old Candler Town Road, Candler, NC 28715, or to St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church, 768 Asbury Road, Candler, NC 28715, or to Four Seasons Hospice, 571 S. Allen Road, Flat Rock, NC 28731.