From Fulton Patriot: Nov. 30, 2002
A memorial service was held Nov. 28 at the Calvary Chapel of Grass Valley, California for John J. Penkala Jr. who died Nov. 14. This was followed by a reception at the Lake of the Pines Country Club.
John was the son of the late John and Evelyn (Novak) Penkala and was born Sept. 22, 1942. He graduated from Fulton High School in 1960, attended the Mohawk Valley Technical Institute in Utica and received a B. A. and a M.S. from SUCO.
A well-known local pilot, he was a crop duster for several years, became a flight instructor and a manager of the Fulton (now Oswego County) airport. In the 70's he taught in Rochester, N.Y. where he developed curriculum for the first aviation class offered in a high school in this part of N.Y. State. He appears as a pilot in "Who's Who in American Aviation."
John died after a long battle with cancer. He is survived by his wife Kate (the former Katherine Deibel), two daughters, Kharah Lombardi of Phoenix, Ariz. and Traya Lee Vallas of Grass Valley; two sons, Shae Penkala and Jayme Penkala of Grass Valley; two stepchildren and five grandchildren. He is also survived by his brothers, Joseph Penkala of Boston, mass. and Paul Penkala of Medford, Ore.; his sister Sonia MacDonald of Reno, Nev. and his uncle, Paul Novak of Fulton, as well as cousins.