The following two articles appeared in the Kuryer Polski on December 9 and December 13, 1927, describing the death and funeral of an early Milwaukee Polish settler, Albert (Polish name: Wojciech) Kotecki, father of Louis Kotecki (Featured Profile #47). (Many thanks to Joanna Białkowska who once again supplied the translation.) Copies of the original articles appear at the end of the post, along with a snip from the Milwaukee Sentinel about the 40th anniversary of Albert and his wife Barbara.
Death Takes Wojciech [Albert] Kotecki, Who Was Father of Controller, When He Was 82.
The deceased was one of first, oldest Polish settlers in Milwaukee.
Wojciech [Albert] Kotecki, father of city controller Ludwik [Louis] M. Kotecki and one of the oldest Polish settlers in Milwaukee, died on Friday in the morning at his home at 617 Fourth Avenue, as an effect of the paralysis which happened on Monday. When he died, he was 82.
The late Wojciech was born in Koźmin in Poznańskie voivoidship. After he finished school, he had training in sewing and when he was 24 he came to America to Chicago.
On the 14th of July 1872 he got married in Saint Stanislaus Church in Chicago to Barbara Kurzawska, who also was born in Koźmin in 1851. After two years in Chicago they moved to Milwaukee and they stayed there till the ends of their lives.
Around 30 years ago, the late Wojciech Kotecki opened his tailor`s shop at Mitchell and Grove Streets with success. He employed in tens people when his business was extended.
His wife died on New Year's, 1914. Of his twelve children, the following still are alive sons: Ludwik, Franciszek, Adam and daughters: Leokadia, Viktoria and Maria.
The late Wojciech Kotecki was always an active person in Polish public life and he was behind national organizations. For many years he belonged to Związek Narodowy Polski (Polish National Association) and he was a member of the Patriot Association. Between old settlers in town he had many friends. He was respected by everyone who knew him, therefore information about his dead was very sad news in the city.
The funeral of this dead pioneer citizen will be on Tuesday morning in Saint Stanislaus Church.
He was always very proud of his son Ludwik, who had a responsible public position in the city from 1912.
Great Funeral Made for the Late Wojciech Kotecki
On Tuesday morning was an eminent funeral for Wojciech Kotecki, who was the father of city controller Ludwik M. Kotecki and also one of the oldest polish settlers in Milwaukee. He died after short illness on Friday in the morning.
The casket, drowned in flowers, was escorted from his house at 617 Fourth Avenue by Father Jurasiński to Saint Stanislaus Church. At 9 a.m. begun the memorial service with participation of many kin, friends and familiars. In the throng in church were many Polish priests, clerical workers and people who work with his son Ludwik.
There was also a delegation from the Patriot Association, where Wojciech was the oldest member.
The casket was transported by: Jjudge Michał Błeński, Jan Stróżyk, Stanisław Choiński and 3 grandsons: Tadeusz Gawin, Karol Gawin, and Eugeniusz Gawin.
There were three Holy Masses for the intention of his soul. At main altar, Holy Mass was celebrated by Father Tutkowski and at the lateral altars by priests: Bierniarz and Krerowicz. The memorial service also was attended by Father Wacław Kruszka - longstanding friend, and priests: Mścisz, Kobeliński, Brzonkała, Krzywonos and Kach- both from Sturtevant.
During piety the chorus Harmonia sang with solos by supervisor Michalski, Mrs M. Bialk and Kazimierz Andrzejewski, which made the ceremony more appealing
After Holy Mass, the long cortege went to Calvary Cemetery, where Father Krzywonos gave a beautiful elegiac eulogy for Wojciech Kotecki, who was for him, a role model Pole, Catholic, father and citizen.
Sincere manifestations during the funeral attested that he was a very popular and respected person in the city.
The late Wojciech Kotecki leaves, in overwhelming grief, sons: Franciszek, Ludwik and Adam, also daughters: Leokadia, Katcka, Wiktoria and Marianna, daughters-in-law: Wanda, Jadwiga and Aniela, son-in-law, 3 grandsons and 4 granddaughters.
Funeral was organized by company of Marcin Czerwiński.
Published in the Milwaukee Sentinel, July 15, 1912.
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