Please understand I use American Serb and Serbian American interchangeably. We were always taught to think of ourselves as Americans first, last and always, but to always be proud of, and never forget our Serbian heritage. Hence in the Pittsburgh area, "American Serb" is the most frequent term used, putting the emphasis on America first.
This is the American Serbian Veterans Memorial Wall in the American Serbian Hall in Milwaukee. In the middle is Lance Siljan, the American Serb who was awarded America's HIGHEST honor, the Congressional Medal of Honor. Lance lost his life in Viet Nam, so the award was given "posthumously" or after he was dead. Lance died in Viet Nam, having suffered some of the most brutal torture ever inflicted on a human. Today, he is remembered with a special room at the U.S. AiR FORCE Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado and many memorials.
Aleksandar Slavkovic wrote a wonderful novel called THE IMMIGRANT: THE JUDGE FISHER STORY, which tells of the 19th century revolutionary George Fisher who studied for the priesthood, fought the Ottomans at Belgrade, whose writings inspired Lord Byron to join the Greek revolution, who stood up to Santa Anna, and organized the first, now forgotten battle of the Texas revolution as some of the sites above will show.
SERB WORLD magazine also did a great job in highlighting many of his known exploits and achievements while in America.
Here is a program booklet from 1944, that featured the guest appearance of another American Serb Congressional Medal of Honor winner, Mitchell Paige, of the United States Marine Corps! Mitchell Paige was so popular that they even made a "G.I. Joe" doll of him!
Wikipedia's info about Mitchell Paige:
Mitchell Paige's website:
“I am proud to be a citizen of a nation whose objective is peace and goodwill for all mankind. A nation which has contributed so much for the benefit of peoples all over the world. A nation, under God, with liberty and justice for all. I am proud to be an American. I can never believe it is old fashioned to love our Flag and Country nor can I ever believe it is being square to stand in readiness behind our flag to defend those ideals for which it stands against all enemies, foreign and domestic.”
In fact, there are EIGHT American Serbs who are recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor!
Here's one of them! "Jake Alexx Mandusich"
Learn more about the Church he belonged to with this site. (Look at the year 1959) http://serbiancathedral.org/Parish_Info/parish_info.asp
If any of you are Libertyville campers, make sure you go visit his grave as he's buried there at St. Sava's!
"Big Jake" was known as "Jake Allex" because at that time, the story goes, his wife had to sign to let him go, but he gave the Army this name and told them he wasn't married! The Army named the Bayonet Training Facility at Ft. Knox, Kentucky for Big Jake Alexx Madusich!
Here's a list of other famous American Serbs that was compiled for us by Bill Dorich, who also wrote several articles/books about Kosovo you can read by clicking on his name. Mr. Dorich was such a fighter for truth and justice during these last 20 years, the Serbian Church awarded him their highest honor, the St. Sava Medal!
Other Famous Serbs selected by Mr. Dorich.....just to mention a few:
Rade Grba, was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor by the United States for his heroic actions in the Navy.
Lou Cukelja, was the first to receive TWO Medals of Honor. He also received the highest decoration given by France, Belgium and Serbia.
Rudy Ostovich—Two-Star general in the American army and Two-Star General Mel Vojvodich.
Ed Radkovich headed Air Force Intelligence in Europe and Brigadier General George Karamarkovic the US Marine Corp.
The U.S. military also includes Admiral Stevan Mandarich, U.S. Navy.
Dr. Rose Karlo Gantner was Director of all the Red Cross in Vietnam at the age of 26 in 1969-1970! She served TWO tours of duty in Vietnam, the first one being from 1966-1967. Today she is still working, as a Health Executive at UPMC, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. Here she is at age 16 in 1960, receiving a basketball trophy from Serbian Singing Federation founder, Vlajko Lugonja. She was elected MVP female/singer (most valuable player! Rose was also the FIRST female woman faculty member hired at Washington and Jefferson (W&J) University in Washington, PA. the year the school became co-ed and hired five women faculty members. Rose was an assistant professor in the athletic department. She also taught at University of Pittsburgh's (Pitt's) Trees Hall when it first opened, leaving only because of her 2nd tour of duty in Viet Nam!!!
Here's an updated version of Rose's bio:
Dr. Rose K. Gantner is the Senior Director of Health Promotion, Product Development and Innovation for UPMC Health Plan in Western, PA. Prior to UPMC, Rose was the Vice President for Corphealth for Managed Care, EAP and Wellness programs for the State of Arkansas. Additionally, she served as a CEO for the Magellan Health System in the Charter hospitals for many years. She also owned her own practice, Center for Life Coping Skills and taught psychology at several universities full time. Rose has over 35 years experience and expertise in wellness and has published several articles and educational training materials besides presenting at national conferences. Some of her most significant awards were the World’s Who’s Who of Women and the Civilian Service Award from the Department of Defense for serving two tours in the Republic of South Vietnam as the Program Director of the Recreational program for the American Red Cross. She earned her doctorate in counseling psychology from Auburn University, her master’s in health education from the University of Pittsburgh and her undergraduate degree from Slippery Rock State University in PA.
Vern Pupich was the test pilot of the DC3 before WWII.
The NASA space program is replete with Serbian engineers and scientists: Thirteen top executives in the Apollo space program were Serbs.
Ralph Salaya headed an engineering team that safely brought back the Apollo 13 astronauts.
After the Apollo disaster, the new escape hatch was redesigned by Danilo Bojic.
Mike Vucelic received the Freedom Award from President Johnson for his work in the Apollo program.
Veljko Gasich was responsible for the B-2 and was an executive vice president of Northrop.
David Vuich was a key public relations executive for Rockwell Collins. He gave mockup tours of the B-1 to over 30,000 people, including members of Congress, the Military, and foreign dignitaries. He also worked on the F-111 and Minuteman II Missile, Polaris/Poseiden Missile Guidance Systems, and Mark II Avionics Systems. He's shown here in the middle, presenting a photo of General James Doolittle standing in front of the B-1 mockup.
Theresa Djuric is a wonderful inspiration to all young American Serbs. She was recently promoted from Colonel in the US Air Force to General! Read more about her wonderful achievements and duties at the Maxwell AFB in Alabama by clicking on her name!
Another Colonel who recently became a Brigiadier General is Gary M. Batinich, of Eveleth, Minnesota. He received his commission upon graduation from the United States Air Force Academy in May, 1978. General Batinich has been assigned to Langley AFB in Virginia.
Two Serbian Americans received a Pulitzer prize. Walter Bogdanich, and Charles Simic, Belgrade born professor of English at the University of New Hampshire who won his Pulitzer for poetry in 1990.
Dr. Henry Suzzalo was born in Herzegovina and he was the president of the Carnegie Foundation on the Advancement of Teaching.
Mladen Sukolovich, known to the world as Karl Malden, is the recipient of the Academy Award for his performance in A Street Car Named Desire, and an Emmy for his role in Fatal Vision. He was the president of the Motion Picture Academy.
Lolita Davidovich, Peter Bogdanovich, Steve Tesich and Rick Rossovich add their talents to the American cinema.
Descended from Catherine the Great of Russia, Princess Elizabeth Karadjordjevic heads the Princess Elizabeth Foundation in New York. Her daughter, Catherine Oxenberg, has made a name in American television.
Natalie Nogulich won our hearts on Broadway with Jason Robards in The Iceman Cometh, Ms. Nogulich is also known for her appearances in numerous television plays and films.
In the field of medicine, Dr. Ninoslav Radovanovic is recognized as the world’s leading cardiovascular surgeon.
Dr. Branislav Radovancevic (1952-2007),Director of the Center for Cardiac Support at the Texas Heart Institute, led the way in Transplant research---his cuttting edge therapies for combating organ rejection was recognized nationally & internationally. Gave frequent scientific presentations worldwide, wrote 300 publications.
Rose Ann Vuich was the first female ever elected to the State Senate in California. A freeway is named in her honor in Fresno, California.
U.S. Congresswoman Helen Delich Bentley served 10 years in Congress, representing the state of Maryland. She did so much work for the state of Maryland that the Port of Baltimore is called the Helen Delich Bentley Port of Baltimore! And this was on the 300th Anniversary of the Port of Baltimore!
Helen with the Governor receiving the news!
Here's Helen being surprised by the Governor of Maryland with the renaming of the Ports of Baltimore to "The Helen Delich Bentley Port of Baltimore!" The special ceremonies were awesome! Helen said the first 100th anniversary there was a war going on. The 200th anniversary there was a fire that encompassed all of Baltimore, but the 3rd 100 years was celebrated in the grandest way it could be!
What a privilege it was for me to be there for this historic occasion! 300th Anniversary and our Helen Delich Bentley!
"The Pride of Baltimore" tall ship came in for the occasion too! Most of the people here work with Helen and were so happy to see her honored.
Helen's two nieces were there for the occasion too!
In the U.S. Federal District Court in Chicago is Judge George Marovich.
In the 2nd Judicial District Court in Nevada is Steven Kosach.
William Jovanovich became president and CEO of Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich, one of America’s most prominent publishing firms.
William Salatich became the president of Gillette Corporation.
Michael Bozic was the former head of the merchandising group at Sears, and CEO of Hills Department Store chain.
Milan Puskar is president of Mylan Labs, one of America’s leading pharmaceutical firms.
Milan Panic, was president and CEO of ICN Pharmaceuticals and was the highest paid corporate executives in Orange County, California. Panic became the Prime Minister of former Yugoslavia.
Alex N. Dragnich is the recipient of the Thomas Jefferson Award for distinguished service to Vanderbilt University, and he is author of numerous books on Yugoslav history.
Other Serbs who achieved prominence in academia include Milorad Draskovitch, Bogdan Maglich, Vasa Mihailovich, Anrei Simic, George Vid Tomashevich, Stella Yaksich, Michael Petrovich and Milos Velimirovic.
Here's an example of Vasa Mihailovich's work in the American SRBOBRAN. This time the writer was the well-deserved Bozidar Sokolovich, who started the first SERB WORLD magazine in Milwaukee!
Mim Bizic was the 1990 NATIONAL AWARDEE at the Smithsonian for her pioneering efforts in integrating the computer into the school curriculum. She worked on a project for the Smithsonian called "Beyond the Limits, Flight Enters the Computer Age," helping to write lesson plans for teachers in the Washington, DC area who could actually bring their children to the exhibit, but also, for teachers who could never travel that far with their students, but could learn vicariously.National Honoree for Apple Computer Clubs three years in a row, named to Apple Hall of Fame; worked for Depts. of Commerce & Energy as an educational consultant.
In sports, Bora Milutinovich was the coach of the U.S. Soccer Team in the 1994 World Cup playoff.
With Henry Kissinger who brought the World Cup to the USA, Rothenberg, president of the U.S. Soccer Federation, and Nick Petrovich, who brought Bora to head the US National Soccer.
During his outstanding career Bora was the only soccer coach to have participated in five World Cups at the helm of five different national teams: Mexico, Costa Rica, USA, Nigeria and China.
Bora Miluntinovich has also coached national teams of Nicaragua and Jamaica and several professional teams around world. When he took the US team in 1992 there was no professional league Bora took the amateurs and made great players out of them.
Nick Petrovich served as the President of the Serbian Unity Congress, and is well-known in the Financial Markets of Mexico.
George Glamack was a pioneer in professional basketball. He was recognized as the first all-time, all-American to play the sport. He was also the first three time all-American.
Today, Vlade Divac follows in the footsteps of “Pistol Pete” Maravich, a legend.
In football, Serbs play a major roll with such great athletes as Jim Nadich, Norm Bulaich, Pete Stojanovich, Ed Obradovich, Jim Obradovich and Pete Lasetich.
Sam Jankovich, the former general manager of the New England Patriots was the athletic director at the University of Miami during the Hurricane’s national championship.
In baseball there are such Serbian greats as Pete Vuckovich, the 1982 Cy Young Award winner. Eli Grba, Nick Strincevich, Walt Dropo, John Vukovich, and Paul Popovich were outstanding in this field.
Here's our Eli Grba at Yankee Stadium on Old Timer's Day this past August, 2008. Eli is now 74 years old and lives in Alabama. His favorite memories include playing in Washington, DC, because all his old friends would come to see him--- Eli Popovich, Nick Lalich, Vic Lumovich, and Mike Rajacich. Eli says he would be mute for hours afterwards, just listening to their duties during Halyard Operation & other things. Niko Nema Sto Srbin Imade!!!!
In car racing we remember Bill Vukovich, two time winner of the Indianapolis 500 who was fondly known as the “Mad Russian,” even though he was a Serb.
In 2004, Milan Opacich earned our nation's highest award -The "National Heritage Award" for all his contributions with the tambura and preserving Serbian history. He's the author of innumerable articles and a book on Serbian Tamburitza Music. He's truly a Renaissance man and a great friend!
If you click on the photos above, you will be taken to Milan's Workshop, where he goes into great detail about how to make a tamuritza instrument. You can also buy some of his music. Please remember to come back to our site too!
A person who helped with the magnitude of the Displaced Persons problem, and especially the Serbs, was William Nikolin, at one time the English section editor of the American Srbobran from 1939-1940, and a SNF student from 1934. As Screening and Evaluation Officer for all refugees in West Germany and Austria, Nikolin processed over sixty-two thousand Serbian applications to come to the United States. It is interesting to note that his mother, Dana Nikolin, participated in the Serbian retreat over the snow covered mountains of Albania (“Albanian Golgotha”) as a nurse and translator in Lady Leila Paget’s team of women nurses who volunteered to aid Serbia during the WWI. Nikolin served in Military Intelligence and was scheduled to be released on Dec. 10, but on Dec. 7, Pearl Harbor was bombed and his plans for a teaching career were changed. He and his men took part in the bloodiest tank battle on WWII in February of 1943, the Battle of Sidi-Bou-Zid in Tunisia, and the liberation of Sicily. Nikolin and his crew drove their tank to Eboli, and were the first to break through the gates of the Italian concentration camp. Many of the prisoners were from Montenegro, Dalmatia and Slovenia, all areas occupied by the Italians during the war. Nikolin, because of the many languages he spoke and his undergraduate degree from the University of Belgrade, worked at the U.S. Embassy in Belgrade for the Department of State. There he was in good company with Alex Dragnich of the U.S. Information Agency; Col. Lazar Vracaric and Lt. Col. Melvin Vuksich, both military attaches; and, according to Serb World’s March/April issue of 1992, Attorney John Mamula, envoy extraordinarie.
WWII fighter pilot Vic Lumovich. Vic was drafted as an Army Air Corps private in July '42, received his pilot wings and a commission in June '43. During WWII, Lt. Col. Lumovich flew with the 15th Air Force, 450th Bobm Group in Italy, completing 50 bomb sorties in five months. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Bronze Star and the Air Medal with Three Oak Leaf Clusters. His post combat service was as an instructor pilot on the B-17s, B-24s, B-25s and B-29s. For 25 years Lt. Col. Lumovich served in several capacities, including assignment to the CIA, the director of the Air Attache Designees' Intelligence School, and with NATO as the Chief of Counter Intelligence and Security for headquarters, Allied Forces, Southern Europe. In 1968 he was the wing intelligence officer for the 553rd wing in Korat, Thailand, where he flew over 65 combat missions over Vietnam and Laos, mostly over the Ho Chi Minh Trail. Vic was born of Montenegrin parents in the Mesobi Iron Range in Northern Minnesota.
The ARBUTINA family of heroes. (See Mim's story in the SRBOBRAN April 19, 2006 about the Movers and Shakers of Freedom. Major Millard Arbutina received the highest award one can get in the Air Force, not once, but TWICE, the Distinguished Flying Cross. Afterwards, he was also an Education Union Activist for the State of Pennsylvania, opening the first field office for the union in Pittsburgh. Up until that time, teachers had no contracts or even the right to negotiate salaries. Millard worked with Hopewell Superintendent John Milanovich and Milan Markovich (Hopewell Education Association) to hep improve teachers' economic well being. David Arbutina, Chairman of the Department of Surgery at the Mt. Nittany Medical Center in Penn State, (State College) PA, graduated from the Air Force Academy in 1976, the year of our nation’s Bicentennial. Dave Arbutina was Chairman of the Bicentennial Committee and one of the most important things the Committee wanted to accomplish was to get special recognition for Lance Sijan! Sijan (Dormitory) Hall is named after American Serb Captain Lance P. Sijan (class of 1965). Captain Sijan was the Academy's first and ONLY graduate so far to receive the Medal of Honor. He received it posthumously for his heroism in Vietnam.
Dan shared that there have been further recognitions: The Air Force Academy Library has a special display of Sijan memorabilia, including his headstone from Vietnam. The 440th Airlift wing in his hometown of Milwaukee has a replica of Sijan’s F-4 at the base entrance where the dining hall is named after him. In 2003, a 10 ft. marble monument in the shape of a stylized F-4 pointing upwards was erected at Arlington Park Cemetery. Sijan Circle at Langley AFB in Virginia is named in his honor as is Sijan Street at Whiteman AFB in Missouri. There’s a Lance P. Sijan Chapter of the Air Force Association in Colorado Springs where the Academy is located, and the AF ROTC from Boston University has a squadron there. Each year the Air Force bestows the Lance Sijan Award for Leadership.
Millard’s sister: Mildred Arbutina Pappas
Millard (Miladin) was the middle child in the Arbutina family: Danica (born in Europe), then Milka or Mildred, Miladin, Michael, then George and Demetro (died young). Mildred is another Arbutina who was a great humanitarian and woman of conscience. Her good deeds and works were acknowledged by Educational Television (PBS) WQED Magazine in its December, 1999 issue when it listed her as a “Pittsburgher of the Century.”
Mildred Arbutina Pappas:
When she was living in Washington in the 1970s, this Beaver County native heard that the historic Vicary House in Freedom was to be razed for expansion of Route 65. PennDOT had already purchased the stone mansion built by sea captain William Vicary around 1826. However, her aggressive campaign and dogged persistence over several years finally succeeded in having alternative plans drawn up and the landmark was saved. Today it is being restored by Beaver County Historical Research and Landmarks Foundation and is open for tours.
MUSULIN, Melissa "Misi", of Richmond, formerly of Pittsburgh, Penn., passed away August 9, 2008. Parents, Dr. Michael and Mary Musulin. Misi graduated from Oberlin Conservatory of Music with a Bachelor's degree in music and received her Master's degree and artist's diploma in music from Cincinnati Conservatory of Music. She was the solo horn player for the Basque National Symphony in San Sebastian, Spain for 10 years. She toured throughout Europe as a soloist. Misi was presently the principal horn player with the Richmond Philharmonic and played with the Williamsburg Sinfonia. Niece of Danny Kukich, Lou Balta and Natalie Kunkle. Her grandfather was a STALWART for the SNF for years and years!
Probably the most notable of ALL American Serbs is Nikola Tesla, the famous inventor from the village of Smiljan, then in part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. His father was a Serbian Orthodox priest, and his mother could trace 8 generations of Serbian Orthodox priests on her side of the family.
One of the VERY best sites on Nikola Tesla is right here!:
You can learn so much about Tesla from the Tesla Memorial Society, so always start there first!
Unveiling ceremonies on the Canadian side......
Canadian Tesla Dedication
Here are some Serbs visiting the Tesla Memorial on the Canadian side of Niagara Falls which was first unveiled on July 9, 2006.
And here's the Tesla Monument on the American side:
From Filip Tomasevic in Belgrade comes this info:
A state funeral was held at St. John the Divine Cathedral in New York City. Telegrams of condolence were received from many notables, including the first lady Eleanor Roosevelt and Vice President Wallace. Over 2000 people attended, including several Nobel Laureates. He was cremated in Ardsley on the Hudson, New York. His ashes were interned in a golden sphere, Tesla’s favorite shape, on permanent display at the Tesla Museum in Belgrade along with his death mask.
In his speech presenting Tesla with the Edison medal, Vice President Behrend of the Institute of Electrical Engineers eloquently expressed the following: "Were we to seize and eliminate from our industrial world the result of Mr. Tesla's work, the wheels of industry would cease to turn, our electric cars and trains would stop, our towns would be dark and our mills would be idle and dead. His name marks an epoch in the advance of electrical science." Mr. Behrend ended his speech with a paraphrase of Pope's lines on Newton: "Nature and nature's laws lay hid by night. God said 'Let Tesla be' and all was light."
“The world will wait a long time for Nikola Tesla’s equal in achievement and imagination.” E. ARMSTRONG
In 1917, Tesla was awarded the Edison Medal, the most coveted electrical prize in the United States.
Nikola Tesla’s name has been honored with an International Unit of Magnetic Flux Density called “Tesla."
The United States Postal Service honored Tesla with a commemorative stamp in 1983.
Tesla was inducted into the Inventor’s Hall of Fame in 1975.
The Nikola Tesla Award is one of the most distinguished honors presented by the Institute of Electrical Engineers. The award has been given annually since 1976.
The Nikola Tesla Statue is located on Goat Island to honor the man whose inventions were incorporated into the Niagara Falls Power Station in 1895. Tesla is known as the inventor of polyphase alternating current.
The Nikola Tesla Corner Sign, located at the intersection of 40th St. and 6th Ave. in Manhattan, is a constant reminder to all New Yorkers of the greatness of this genius.
And who can forget the many contributions of Michael Pupin? He helped sponsor so many of the early American Serb churches along with Nikola Tesla. It was Pupin who raised contingents of Serbian American volunteers to help Serbia in WWI. (They were called the "Dobrovoljci".) Pupin is famous for so many things: the long distance telephone, being on President Woodrow Wilson's First Air Council, and for earning a Pulitzer Prize for his book called FROM IMMIGRANT TO INVENTOR are just a few! There's a building named after the famous professor in Columbia University.
Here's another good one!
Mimo from Galveston says to not forget the artist Tanasko Milovich from St. Louis.
Look here!: www.askart.com
Another famous artist and iconographer was Alex Dzigurski. Read more about him at this ---->Serbian Unity Congress site called "Blago."
Mr. Dzigurski made the icons for St. Elijah (Aliquippa) and St. Sava's (McKeesport), but he sold paintings to large corporations for over $30,000 decades ago! His daughter, Jelena Kolarovich, made the mosaic above St. Elijah's doors while her father was painting inside! Jelena was also a very successful California businesswoman along with her husband George, with their winery!
We're proud of the work Dr. Mateja Matejic started at the Hilandar Research Library for Medieval Slavic Studies at Ohio State University and carried on by his learned son, Dr. Predrag Matejic! Check out the website here to learn more:
The Dapcevich family from Alaska is absolutely amazing in what they've been able to achieve! John Dapcevich was Mayor of Sitka, Alaska for five terms, a total of twelve years. Velimir ("Bill") Dapcevich was the head of the Bureau of Indian Affairs for the whole state of Alaska. Don Dapcevich was a Lt. Colonel in the U.S. Air Force and was the state's Executive Director of the Drug and Alcohol Abuse Program. Sister Vi (Ljubica Dapcevich Cope) is one of Juneau, Alaska's most respected and well-loved business-women. Indeed, her nickname is "Mrs. Juneau!" Niece Djordjina is the head of the Veterans Retirement Center and Veterans Affairs! One of Bill's grandsons is a Navy Seal.
At the Mendenhall Glacier!
Like father, like son! Just got an email (6/27/08!) from MARKO Dapcevich, telling me he's finishing up his 2nd term as Mayor in Sitka, and is currently a candidate for State House. Marko says in 1971 Sitka unified the borough becoming the largest city (land wise) in America. That's when his dad first became Mayor. Marko says to not forget about his Grandfather either, who helped organize the workers for safe and fair conditions!
Speaking more about Alaska, we have (Serb) Bill Ray, an influential State Senator from Juneau in the 70's & '80's.
Frank Peratrovich, a Tlingit-Serb, helped shape Native politics for a generation.
Elizabeth Peratovic (Native Alaskan) 1911-1958, was an Alaska Civil Rights Leader....married to Frank Peratrovich's brother, Roy.
Mike Stepovich was appointed by then President Dwight D. Eisenhower as the last territorial Governor of Alaska in 1959.
In Fairbanks, Alaska, Mike Yankovich was a very successful potato farmer, leaving all of his acreage to the Univ. of Alaska in Fairbanks that allowed them to greatly expand their campus!
At the Capital's government building, there is a special hall of the Legislative wing dedicated to the late Alex Miller (Milaich), a prominent Democrat and lobbyist who had a major influence on legislation in the '70's, '80's.
(Read more in the American SRBOBRAN, 17 Sept. 2003, pp. 7-9, "Eureka! Pittsburghers Find Gold In Alaska!")
There are the famous American Serb brother architects, Lou and Dennis Astorino from Pittsburgh, well-known for their generosity as well as their spectacular achievements of being architects of record for the well-loved PNC Baseball Park in Pittsburgh, and countless other projects in Healthcare, research facilities, residential, cultural and commercial buildings. Lou was the designer of the Chapel of the Holy Spirit in the Vatican for which he achieved much acclaim. The brothers were considered the finest & most trusted "caretakers" of Frank Lloyd Wright's "Fallingwater" home he built for the Kaufmann family, preserving the architectural masterpiece for two decades already! The two serve on various Boards of Directors helping the city and nation to be the best!
Read about Astorino awards here! <-----------
Wayne S. Vucinich was the Father of East European Studies who passed away at age 91. He was the beloved mentor to thousands of students during his 5 decades at Stanford University. He wrote and edited many books. A member of the OSS, (forerunner of the FBI and CIA) he was skillful, legendary.
Alex Dragnich was Professor Emeritus at Vanderbilt University and the author of many books, especially on Kosovo and the illegal break-up of Yugoslavia.
Dr. George Vid Tomasevich was Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at NY State College in Buffalo and the author of many books, including THE HISTORY OF THE SERBS. +++++++++++++++++++
Dr. Ron (Karlo) Kneib is a well-known research Marine Biologist in Sapello Island, GA.
Ray Zakovich is a Retired Supervisory Special Agent of the U.S. Secret Service.
Ray, far right, receives congratulatons from his relatives after his speech addressing the ASERBS high school scholarship awardees in Aliquippa! Ray Zakovich guarded many U.S. Presidents from Kennedy on up! We are all proud of his accomplishments and honored that he's still doing great things in Kansas City, Kansas!
The Zernich Family from Aliquippa is synonymous with the University of Pittsburgh. Three brothers (Steve, Wally and Mickey) are became doctors after distinguished athletic careers also at Pitt, and their sister, Nadine, graduated in Education. Mickey donated $250,000 for the Locker Room for the men's basketball team in the new Petersen Events Center. Mickey is responsible for initiating and funding the Varsity Walk outside the Cathedral of Learning.
Aliquippa was lucky as it also had the Kavic Brothers- all doctors! Dr. Michael, Dr. Alex, Dr. Tommy, Dr. Timmy!
Did you ever see a BIGGER award? This one was given to Pittsburgh educator Ned Mrvos, in 2005!
John and Desanka Mamula were both well-known lawyers, and even more generous givers to all causes Serbian. They were Kumovi of their St. Mary's Church in Clariton, PA numerous times. Desanka was recognized by the Serbian Bar Association as being the FIRST American- born woman of Serbian descent to obtain her law degree in 1941, presenting her with the Czar Dushan Award in 1995.
The Stojkovich Family of Chicago were very successful in their Nursing Homes businesses and shared their wealth generously with the New Gracanica Monastery. For instance, they donated the hand carved Monastery doors at New Gracanica's Most Holy Mother of God Monastery which depict twenty-three (23) monasteries and churches from various regions of Serbia. The Stojkovichs gave thousands and thousands of dollars to the Monastery as we would give hundreds or tens. But their ultimate gift was when their one year old grandson, Nicholas, gave $100,000.00 to help the cause! What blessed, beloved Serbs they were! And how they led by example! They will NEVER be forgotten! Dragica also served as KSS Chairperson for the Diocese for years and years!
We're very proud of the roots from our U.S. Senator, George Voinovich from Ohio, and U.S. Congress- woman, Melissa Bean, of Illinois.
Speaking of Illinois, we can't forget that Adam Popovich was honored in the 1970's, the first year of the National Ethnic Treasures Heritage award. He was also recognized the same year in the state of ILLINOIS for his contributions to preserving the state's ethnic heritage. ALL--every member-- of the Popovich family is considered ETHNIC TREASURES in my book!
We have outstanding Dentists who have contributed so much to America. Dr. Dan Pyevich (Silvis, IL and Phoenix, Arizona)is a writer and also was President of the SNF for many years. Dr. Rick Zivic also directs the Kosovo Men's Choir in Cleveland, OH. Dr. Debbie Studen-Pavlovich has taught at the University of Pittsburgh's School of Dentistry for many years and has been an international circuit speaker all over the world on modern dentistry.
More coming! AND, I welcome your suggestions for more, more, more!
Kum Bob Susnjer, computer expert, tambura expert, etc.
This must have been @1980!
I have always loved my Kum, Bob Susnjer, but today, even more so, if possible! He sent me this list to share with all of you that he has worked on for a long time (You can tell just by looking at it!). God bless him and grant him "Many, many years!" So far, there are 271 (now almost 500!) people listed and I'm sure he'll be adding to that all the time too! Bob knows what SRPSTVO is. It's all of us working together for the common good! Please take time to see this excellent piece of work from a computer expert who also plays a mean bass for many tamburitza orchestras! Thanks Kum!
(Click on link above)
Update: Kum Bob continues to add new names to the list.
On 3/8/09, The Dunav Tamburitzan Orchestra was inducted into the Beaver Valley Musicians Hall of Fame! This HALL OF FAME includes Henry Mancini, Nick Hayden and Don Knezevich. Dunav is the first tamburitza group to be so recognized. Congratulations to the group that was honored on Sunday, May 3, 2009. (See more information on the INTERESTING TIDBITS page of this website!