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Published: Thursday, 2/7/2008

Executive admired for his work ethic

Raymond E. Konczal, 81, an executive with Doehler-Jarvis in Toledo known for his tireless work ethic, died Tuesday at his home in Warren, Ohio.

The cause of death was emphysema and bronchial pneumonia, his son, David, said.

Mr. Konczal was a career employee at Doehler-Jarvis, the former producer of aluminium engine blocks for the automotive industry that was headquartered in Toledo. He started in 1952 in the firm's accounting department and retired in 1990 as vice president of finance.

After Doehler-Jarvis was purchased in 1982 by what became Farley Industries, Mr. Konczal's responsibilities expanded to include some finance work for other Farley-owned companies, such as apparel maker Fruit of the Loom, his son said.

While the work kept Mr. Konczal exceptionally busy and required much traveling, he also found it very rewarding.

"He was a workaholic," David Konczal said. "He would work 60 hours a week and he loved it. He was one of the very few people who wanted to keep going when he hit 65, when they had mandatory retirement."

Former colleague Jack Chezek recalled Mr. Konczal's work as plant controller in Toledo during the early 1970s as well the several years he was controller for the firm's plant in Grand Rapids, Mich.

Mr. Konczal returned to Toledo in 1975 to become the company's assistant controller for budgeting and planning.

"His work ethic was unbelievable," Mr. Chezek said. "He was a very good accountant and very loyal."

Mr. Konczal grew up in Toledo's old south end and was a 1943 graduate of Central Catholic High, where he played fullback on the football team and was inducted last year into the school's hall of fame.

He was drafted into the Army during World War II and served in the Pacific. After the war, he was stationed on Okinawa.

Through the GI Bill, Mr. Konczal went on to the University of Dayton, majoring in business administration and playing on the school's football team.

He stayed a football fan for life. "I don't think my dad missed a Notre Dame game for 35 years," David Konczal said.

After retirement Mr. Konczal and his wife, the former Geraldine Bieganski, moved to Warren to be closer to their son and his family.

Surviving are his wife of 51 years, Geraldine; son, David; brother, Michael; sister, Geraldine Thebes, and three grandchildren.

Visitation will be from 5 to 7 p.m. today at the Staton-Borowski Funeral Home, Warren. Services will be at

10:30 a.m. tomorrow at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church, Warren, with visitation an hour before the service. The family suggests tributes to the church.



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