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Sergeant Major Peter J. Marovich, USMC Ret.

July 22, 1924 ~ May 4, 2019 (age 94)

Sergeant Major Peter J. Marovich, USMC Ret., 94, formerly of Aliquippa, passed away on Saturday, May 4, 2019.

He was born on July 22, 1924 in West Aliquippa, a son of the late Thomas and  Theresa (Beder) Marovich.  He was a member of St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Evelyn (Yurkovich) Marovich; and a brother, Frank Marovich.

Sergeant Major Marovich enlisted in the Marine Corps in February 1942 at the age of 17 and attended recruit training at MCRD, Parris Island.  During WWII, Sergeant Major Marovich served with the 3rd Marine Division in New Zealand and Guadalcanal and participated in the battles of Bougainville, Guam, and Iwo Jima.  Upon his return to the United States in late 1945, he served at Marine Barracks, Philadelphia guarding German prisoners of war. Discharged in March 1946, Sergeant Major Marovich worked in the Jones & Laughlin Steel Mill as a millwright.  He also organized the Happy Hearts Tamburitza Orchestra, broadcasting over WBVP Beaver Falls on Sunday mornings.  In 1950 he reenlisted in the Marine Corps and reported for duty at Quantico, Virginia.  Upon transfer to Parris Island, S.C., he was assigned duty as a drill instructor. During the Korean War he served as a machine gun platoon sergeant. During the Vietnam War, he served as the Headquarters Battalion Sergeant Major for the 1st Marine Division.  Sergeant Major Marovich’s other duties included serving in the following areas: Taiwan; Mount Fuji and Iwakuni, Japan; Okinawa; Namphong, Thailand; the Philippines; Hawaii; Naples, Italy; Vieques Island, Puerto Rico; New Zealand.  The highlights of his career include:  serving as a private first class when the Third Division was formed during WWII; becoming the Division Sergeant Major of that same division and his progression from recruit at Parris Island to drill instructor, and finally Depot Sergeant Major.  Once retired, Sergeant Major Marovich worked in the motion picture “The Great Santini” as the stand-in for Robert Duvall.  Later he was the Director of Security at Windmill Harbour on Hilton Head Island, S.C.  Sergeant Major Marovich’s personal decorations include: the Bronze Star with Combat V; Navy Achievement Medal; Combat Action Ribbon; Good Conduct Medal with Nine Stars; letter of commendation for duty at Bougainville Island.  Sergeant Major Marovich retired from the Marine Corps after 32 years of active service.  At his retirement ceremony, he was awarded “The Navy League General Gerald C. Thomas Award” for inspirational leadership while serving with the 3rd Marine Division.

He is survived by a son, Peter Marovich, Jr. and his wife, Jenny Jones; a daughter, Denise Ackerman and her husband Rene; three grandchildren, Sofia, Ian, and Colin Ackerman; and a sister, Ann Rossi.

Friends will be received on Wednesday from 2-4pm and 6-8pm in Darroch Cremation and Funeral Tributes, Inc. 2640 Mill Street, Aliquippa www.darrochfuneralhome.com where prayers will be offered on Thursday at 9:30am followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at 10am in St. Frances Cabrini Catholic Church.

Entombment will follow in Mt. Olivet Catholic Cemetery.

The Beaver County Special Unit will meet at the cemetery on Thursday at 11:15am to conduct full military honors.

St. Frances Cabrini Parish Vigil Service will be Wednesday 5:45pm in the funeral home.

 

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