Joe Koch, 1927-2012

“Father Joe” Koch died Thursday, April 12, 2012 in Jefferson Regional Medical Center at age 84.

Koch, of Elizabeth Township, was born in McKeesport on May 7, 1927, the son of the late James and Gladys Koch. A graduate of Trinity Episcopal Seminary, he was ordained as a deacon at St. Stephen’s in 1987 and as a priest in 2006. He was serving as priest of Transfiguration Church in Clairton at the time of his death.

A veteran of World War II, where he served in the Merchant Marines, “Father Joe” retired from General Motors’ Pittsburgh Plant (Fisher Body) after 45 years’ service.

A member of F&AM Aliquippa Lodge and American Legion Post 0331 in Trafford, “Father Joe” is survived by his wife, the former Lillian Mae Dutko; sons, Joseph J. Koch, of Columbia Station, Ohio; Lawrence K. Koch, of Monaca, Beaver County; and Robert B. Koch, of West Newton; a daughter, Christine Fox of St. Joseph, Mich.; a brother, James B. Koch, of Mentor, Ohio; grandchildren, a great-grandson, and nieces and nephews. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a brother, George Koch.

Father Joe’s funeral will be held at 2:30 p.m. Sunday at St. Stephen’s with the Most Rev. Robert Duncan officiating, assisted by the Rev. Karl Petterson. Internment to follow at the columbarium of St. Stephen’s. There is no public visitation.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Transfiguration Anglican Church, 447 Halcomb Ave., Clairton, PA 15025. Arrangements are in charge of Gilbert Funeral Home and Crematory, Boston, Elizabeth Township.


Congratulations to parishioner and acolyte Aaron Matta, who has achieved the rank of Eagle Scout. Just two percent of Boy Scouts in the United States achieve Eagle rank.

Aaron began scouting in first grade as a Tiger Cub in Pack 98. He received his Arrow of Light award and advanced into Boy Scout Troop 679 in fifth grade.

Since joining Troop 679, Aaron has served as a Troop Patrol Leader and Senior Patrol Leader. He is also a Brotherhood member of the Order of the Arrow. Aaron has worked on numerous community projects with the scouts over his 12 years as a member.

Aaron is a three-year letterman and starting goalkeeper for the Elizabeth-Forward High School soccer team, four-year letterman on the track team in pole vaulting, a member of the Elizabeth-Forward Soccer Association, and goalkeeper for the Pittsburgh Football Club, Junior Hounds. He is on the Honor Roll at Elizabeth-Forward, an athletic scholar award winner and an all-tournament player award winner.

Aaron is a member of the co-ed volleyball team, SADD, Physics Club, Interact Club and TFIM Club, and president of the Ski Club. He has volunteered for nine years with Rebuilding Together Pittsburgh. He is a recipient of the Bishop’s Award for Service.

In his spare time, Aaron likes to snowboard, play dek hockey and go fishing. He is a certified lifeguard and is currently employed by Brandywine Agency. He will be attending Penn State Erie—Behrend College, where he will be majoring in engineering and has been recruited to play on the campus’ soccer team.

February vestry meeting

  • Vestry meetings will now be on Tuesdays. Fr. Dave suggested that the Vestry continue to meet throughout the summer.
  • John Ochap was elected Junior Warden; Pat Greene will continue as Church Clerk.
  • Karen Slobodian was appointed by Fr. Dave as Senior Warden.
  • Denise Ritter was appointed chair of the Communications Committee; Ethel Balas was appointed chair of the Pastoral Care Committee.
  • Fr. Dave will distribute his schedule to the Vestry members two months ahead of time.
  • Lani Temple is in the process of completing the grant application for the new roof.
  • The next Vestry meeting will be April 10.