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Joseph M. Kozakiewicz, Sr.

April 2, 1959 ~ August 9, 2017 (age 58)

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Joseph M. Kozakiewicz, Sr. (Kozy, Pops, Joe), 58, who was a long life resident of South Bend, IN, passed away peacefuly in his own home at 5:28p.m. Wednesday, August 9, 2017. His mother, daughter and grandson were by his side, until his last breath. He put up the most courageous battle to pancreatic cancer and fought until his last breath.

Kozy is survived by his mother, Jaqueline Kozakiewicz of South Bend, IN, his two brothers Jeffrey A. Kozakiewicz of Mason, OH, and James (Christine) Kozakiewicz of Noblesville, IN.  He is also survived by his two children, Joseph Kozakiewicz, Jr. (Lisa Newgent) and Kelly (Tyler) Rayl both of South Bend, IN. Of those mentioned above he is also survived by his nieces and nephews; Courtney Kozakiewicz, Destiny (Noah) Blair, Michael Kozakiewicz, Steven Kozakiewicz, and Nick Kozakiewicz. Kozy is lastly survived by his “two” grandchildren, Steven Lee Meredith III, and his first biological grandson who was his pride and joy Axle Rayl.  Kozy was preceded in death by his Father Joseph A. Kozakiewicz Jr.


Kozy was born on April 2nd, 1959 in South Bend, IN to his parents Jaqueline and Joseph Kozakiewicz.  He graduated from Lasalle High School June 5th, 1977. Joe was your typical teenage boy growing up, especially growing up with two brothers.  And other “brothers” he acquired on the way like Chris Noble and Danny Swindle.  Many stories have been told about all of them – and you can only imagine all the laughs he brought to many peoples’ lives.  Joe throughout the years was a butcher and had a long career of 20 + years as meat cutter at Meijer in Goshen, IN.  He made a long lasting impact on everyone he worked with and will be truly miss by all of his team members and co-workers.

Kozy enjoyed golfing, fishing, hunting and getting to spend the remainder of his time with his grandson Axle.  Anyone that knew Kozy –  knew he was an excellent cook.  He had fire in his blood for cooking and that is one thing everyone will miss about him.  From his home made polish sausage, deer jerky, his new hot hamburgers and sausage patties he started to make last summer, to deep fried perch and one thing everyone knows – his lemon butter chicken.  These were just a few of the family favorites that will truly be missed.  He had a love for that grill – and the love showed through all of his cooking.

As we are all sadden and hurt from this lost, we truly gained a guardian angel.  He fought so hard to conquer this cancer and he did one hell of a job.  As much pain and suffering he went through – even until the very end he could put a smile on his face.  You are now reunited with your Dad in heaven. And we will all miss you from the bottom of our hearts.

This one is for you Pops! Kozy, Joe! We love you and miss you dearly. Glad you are now home and at peace.

And a very special thanks to the Hospice crew at Aseracare in Elkhart, IN.  Dorothy, Tara, Carolyn, Jackie and Jan to name a few that really helped, with this battle my Dad fought against.  Our whole family appreciates all the time and concern you took to take care of our loved one.


A Private Ceremony will be held for Joseph Kozakiewicz, Sr. on Tuesday August 15th, 2017 at Kaniewski Funeral Home for family. Any flowers can be sent to the funeral home and any monetary donations can be sent to TCU account trust for his grandson Axle Rayl.

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