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Old 07-26-2021, 09:18 AM   #1
big_smith
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Default Tribute to a Friend

Today I will attend the funeral of a friend. I just wanted to pay tribute to his life of service. John Kowalik was a member of TBH although I cannot remember his screen name. What is important is that he spent almost 35 years in public service. He was a paramedic for the City of Wharton for that entire time. He has been the EMS Director for the past 15 years or so. He and I worked together for many years, I as a police officer and he as a paramedic. He was our ERT Teams first Combat Medic, so he and I went through a lot of doors together. This was a job he volunteered for, not one that was assigned. He went through those doors unarmed, except for his trauma bag, and quick wit.

He was a loud mouth, who loved to joke and laugh. He had absolutely no filter and would say things out loud that no one in their right mind would say. He would also do anything for anyone in need. I never knew John to say no.

John was an imperfect person, as we all are. But John was different. He was a person who was truly willing to give someone a second chance. He hired people over my advice. He always said that the City took a chance on him, and he was going to do the same. As a result he has had some people come through his organization who have done a complete 180 in their lives and have turned in to outstanding employees and great human beings.

John just had a huge heart. He wasn't scared to call you out when you messed up, but he would be there for you when you did. I can't even tell you the number of hours I spent in his shop building deer stands and feeders, and listening to him laugh and joke, at my crappy welds. But then he would show me how to do it right. The number of camp fires we sat around. The number of meals we shared.

John deserves to be honored. He deserves to be remembered. I am a better person for having known him. I cannot believe you are gone my friend. Life will never be the same without you.
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Old 07-26-2021, 09:30 AM   #2
camoclad
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RIP John, God bless
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Old 07-26-2021, 09:35 AM   #3
Hogmauler
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What a tribute Sarge. Our legacy is reflected in the life we lived. Sorry your friend is gone brother.
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Old 07-26-2021, 09:39 AM   #4
Big Lee
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I am sorry for your loss. The world is losing too many of the good ones.
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Old 07-26-2021, 10:03 AM   #5
2Lazy2P
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Sorry for your loss of a good friend. They are hard to find it hurts to lose them.
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Old 07-26-2021, 10:10 AM   #6
Calfroper81
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Sorry for your loss but know your thankful for all the memories y’all shared
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Old 07-26-2021, 10:11 AM   #7
Cooper
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RIP John....prayers sent.
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Old 07-26-2021, 10:40 AM   #8
DUKFVR
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RIP John. God Bless & Prayers Up.
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Old 07-26-2021, 11:32 AM   #9
kurt68
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Rip Sir, sounds like I would have gotten along with him real good.

Godspeed
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Old 07-26-2021, 12:01 PM   #10
Rwc
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Some could be so lucky to have a tribute written about them at the time of passing that equaled yours.

Great tribute and R.I.P. sir John.

Rwc
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Old 07-26-2021, 12:06 PM   #11
Ellen
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I am so sorry for the loss of your friend John Kowalik. May he rest in peace.
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Old 07-26-2021, 12:26 PM   #12
Geezy Rider
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RIP John. Thank you sir for your service.
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Old 07-26-2021, 12:36 PM   #13
cva34
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Rip sir
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Old 07-26-2021, 05:11 PM   #14
big_smith
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Funeral probably had 300 or more people. Awesome testament to how many people John touched both personally and professionally. I’m proud to have known him.
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Old 07-26-2021, 05:18 PM   #15
ACbob
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Hey G,
Fitting tribute. John started his EMS career in Rockport and was one of my volunteers at the time. The service was full of the honor that was due John. Thanks for being his friend, and for looking after T and their boys. Catch you on the other side, John.
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Old 07-26-2021, 07:27 PM   #16
Tx_Wader
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I knew John but I didn't know that he had passed away.

Sure am sorry to hear that.
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Old 07-26-2021, 07:43 PM   #17
Bone Thug
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rwc View Post
Some could be so lucky to have a tribute written about them at the time of passing that equaled yours.

Great tribute and R.I.P. sir John.

Rwc
I agree. Great tribute. Sorry, big smith for the loss of your friend. Good friends are a huge blessing.
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Old 07-26-2021, 07:46 PM   #18
Fishndude
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Wish I’d known him. God bless him, his family and friends.
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Old 07-26-2021, 08:00 PM   #19
rvd
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I met John at an El Campo/Wharton football game years ago when a lady broke her hip or leg coming out of the stands. Seemed like a great guy who was excellent at his job, very nice tribute for your friend.
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Old 07-26-2021, 09:27 PM   #20
hopedale
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Sorry for your loss.
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Old 07-26-2021, 10:22 PM   #21
Mtltx
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RIP John
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Old 07-26-2021, 10:35 PM   #22
RascalArms
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RIP John. Wish I would have known him. What a great tribute OP. A man needs friends like you. God bless.
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Old 07-26-2021, 10:36 PM   #23
RMW
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Remember him and Gary being a EMT instructors at WCJC back in the mid 90s, he was a good dude. He passed away way to young.

Last edited by RMW; 07-26-2021 at 10:53 PM.
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Old 07-27-2021, 12:49 PM   #24
Patriot-2000
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Prayers Up for Everyone ..
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Old 07-27-2021, 01:13 PM   #25
Mary
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Sorry to read of his passing. His username was Talon.
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Old 07-27-2021, 01:23 PM   #26
Hardware
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Sorry for your loss and a very nice tribute!
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Old 07-27-2021, 01:35 PM   #27
Phillip Fields
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Sorry for your loss,
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