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James J. “Jim” Slabonik, Jr.

James J. “Jim” Slabonik, Jr., 65, of Mertztown, and formerly of Boyertown, passed away unexpectedly on Monday, February 24, 2020. He was the husband of Elizabeth A. (Knecht) Slabonik, with whom he shared thirty-nine years of marriage.

Born in Harrisburg, he was the oldest of five children born to the late James J. Sr. and Mary E. (Bair) Slabonik. He became a man at a young age and cleared the path for all of his family to walk through when there was no trail. He led by example and was a man of action.

Jim was a 1972 graduate of the Milton Hershey School where he excelled in football, wrestling and track and field. Off the field, he was a mentor and leader to his brothers at MHS.

A talented carpenter, Jim owned and operated along with son Joe, Hometown Carpentry Inc. before recently retiring. Together they restored many historic barns in the Oley Valley.

Jim volunteered his time in the Boyertown community for many years as a wrestling coach with the Boyertown Youth Wrestling Club. In his free time, he spent many a day out on the golf course with his friends and in his younger days he was an avid ski bum. He was a long time member of the East Coast Gold Cup. He enjoyed travelling and sightseeing the country with his wife. He loved being a “Pop Pop” and spoke often of all of his grandchildren. He had the biggest heart and would do anything for anyone.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by his children: Joseph R., husband of Schenley Slabonik; Kristina M., wife of Jordan Smith; and Peter J. Slabonik; grandchildren: Mason Slabonik, Oseary Smith, Everly Slabonik and Orion Smith; siblings: Richard, Cheryl, Michael and Steven Slabonik and many nieces and nephews.

A Celebration of Jim’s life will be held at the Purcell Friendship Hall at the Milton Hershey School, 109 McCorkel Road, Hershey, PA 17033 on Sunday, April 5, 2020 from 1-4 PM. A time of sharing will be at 2:30 PM. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Boyertown Area Wrestling Assoc., PO Box 362, Boyertown, PA 19512, the proceeds of which will be used to create a senior scholarship. Online condolences may be offered at

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