Praskievicz, Joseph Charles

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Joseph Charles Praskievicz, 80, passed away at his home in Blacksburg on February 10, 2023. Born in Peekskill, New York, he is preceded in death by his parents, Joseph A. Praskievicz and Dorothy Marguerite (Rushforth), and brother, Frank E. Praskievicz.

Joe is survived by his wife of 37 years, Terry L. Cook, his daughter and son-in-law, Diana and William Dagher, of Alpharetta, Georgia, grandchildren, Sophia, May, Hope, and Jonathan Dagher, and great-grandson Brayden. He is also survived by his wife’s siblings, William Cook and his wife Anne Panella, Cindy Cook and her husband Greg Galbreath, nieces and nephews, Nicole, Myra, and Riley Horton, Conan, and Kira Cook as well as numerous great nieces and nephews. Also left to cherish his memory are his god-daughter Lauren Wise Shkolniko, her parents Martha and Walter Wise as well as many dear friends.

Upon graduation in 1960 from Rutherford High School in New Jersey, Joe joined the U.S. Navy and traveled the world. He served several submarine tours during the Vietnam era. First aboard diesel submarines USS Razorback and USS Clamagore and later as a Reactor Operator and Engineering Watch Supervisor aboard nuclear submarines USS Thomas Jefferson and USS Will Rogers.

While in the Navy he married and in 1965 his daughter was born. After leaving the service in 1968, Joe continued his work in the nuclear power industry. His career would lead him to many different parts of the country where he picked up various hobbies. While working for General Electric in Arkansas during the ’60s and ’70s, he took up rodeo riding while living on a farm raising cows, pigs, chickens, and horses. He later moved his family to Illinois where he added flying airplanes and playing guitar with friends in a band.

In 1976, Joe took a position with General Physics Corp. as Executive Director of the Chattanooga, TN Division. It was during this time he added riding motorcycles to his favorite things to do. Joe’s life would take a different path when he moved to Maryland and met and married his second wife, Terry Cook, in 1985.

In 1991 his first grandchild was born and he became lovingly known as Papa Joe. In 1992 after leaving GP, Joe and Terry moved to Blacksburg where he helped her acquire and run Tall Oaks Montessori School.

For many years, Joe had a second career with Thayer and Associates consulting at various nuclear power plants and training facilities around the country as well as working for the DOE in Washington, DC. Joe’s later years found him enjoying time with his daughter and grandchildren, spending summers at the Outer Banks, watching his New York Yankees or VT Hokies, and working alongside his wife at their Montessori school where he became affectionately known as “Mr. Joe”. His job titles during this time included Administrator, handyman, cook, snow remover, teacher, teller of tales, jokester, babysitter, and wonderful role model to the many children who were lucky enough to cross paths with this special man.

Visitation will be held from 5-7 pm on Friday, Feb. 17 followed by an 11:00 am Celebration of Life on Saturday, Feb. 18 at McCoy Funeral Home.

When remembering Joe, please consider organ donation or a contribution to the Blacksburg Rescue Squad .