Purchase photos

Melva L. Pivonka


Melva L. Pivonka, 87, Timken, died Thursday, May 1, 2014, at Rush County Memorial Hospital, La Crosse.

Melva L. Pivonka, 87, Timken, died Thursday, May 1, 2014, at Rush County Memorial Hospital, La Crosse.

She was born June 26, 1926, in La Crosse to Henry W. and Ida (Moore) Gillig. She was a 1944 graduate of La Crosse High School and attended Fort Hays Kansas State College, Hays.

She married Cyrill M. "Bud" Pivonka on Dec. 24, 1946, in La Crosse. She was employed by the Rush County News, La Crosse. Melva and Bud, with Edward and Thelma Fiala, built and operated the La Crosse Bowl. In 1950, her husband was recalled to service in the Korean War, and she returned to work at the Rush County News until November 1951. In 1952, they moved to Timken and operated Pivonka Implement with Bud's brother, Jim, and later in La Crosse until 1979, where she worked part time as a bookkeeper.

She was a member of the United Methodist Church, United Methodist Women, both of La Crosse; a Cub Scout den mother and leader; co-organizer of the La Crosse WBA, where she served as secretary; a coach and instructor of Junior Bowlers; Gay Gingham EHU; Monday evening Pitch Club; SWKAAA Board, Dodge City; the Rush County Council on Aging; and the Veterans of Foreign Wars Auxiliary, Hays.

Survivors include her husband, Timken; two sons, Steve Pivonka and wife, Sharnon, Gardner, and David Pivonka, Great Bend; a daughter, Nancy Pivonka, Santa Fe, N.M.; five grandchildren, Andy Pivonka, Melissa Pivonka, Kimberly Bartly, Jeremy Pivonka, and Aaron Pivonka; and five great- grandchildren, Jake Bartly, Easton Bartly, Kohen Pivonka, Genevieve Pivonka, and Brooklynn Pivonka.

She was preceded in death by her parents and a brother, Alex Gillig.

Services will be at 1:30 p.m. Monday at United Methodist Church, La Crosse; inurnment in La Crosse City Cemetery.

Memorials are suggested to the Wounded Warrior Project.

Janousek Funeral Home, La Crosse, is in charge of arrangements. Condolences can be sent to the family at www.charterfunerals.com.