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Gilfert M Mihalich

July 12, 1926 — June 2, 2020

JUDGE GILFERT M. MIHALICH LATROBE FORMERLY OF MONESSEN AND SMITHTON Judge Gilfert M. Mihalich, age: 93 embraced by family and friends, went to be with the Lord on Tuesday, June 2, 2020. Gilfert was born on July 12, 1926 in Monessen, PA, son of the late Matthew and Kathryn Yursich Mihalich, both of whom immigrated to the United States from Croatia. Gilfert was a graduate of Monessen High School (1944), Duquesne University (1948), University of Pittsburgh School of Law (1957) and the National Judicial College in Reno, Nevada, (1973 and 1978). The Judge married the love of his life Pauline (Razum) Mihalich April 29, 1950, and lived and raised a family together for nearly 68 years until January 2018 when Pauline passed away. Throughout his life Gilfert’s passions were taking care of his family and serving his community and country. He was a faithful member of Saint Anthony De Padua Roman Catholic Church of Monessen where he participated in the building construction. Later he became a member of Epiphany of our Lord Roman Catholic Church in Monessen. Thereafter, he later received the “Diocese of Greensburg Award” for his longtime dedication to church activities. Judge Mihalich, a veteran of the United States Army Air Force, proudly served his country during WWII. He was a member of the American Legion for more than 73 years and Commander of Monessen Post. He served as Judge Advocate for Post 28 for more than 50 years and Judge Advocate for the 31st District of the American Legion. He was recognized for his numerous contributions to the veterans’ affairs when he was awarded the “Distinguished Service Award of the American Legion Department of Pennsylvania” in 1991. In addition to his volunteer activities, Judge Mihalich worked as an attorney; a Law Clerk on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court and Westmoreland County Court of Common Pleas; Assistant District Attorney, and Judge on the Westmoreland County Court of Common Pleas to which he was elected in 1972 and retained in 1982 and 1992. He was the first elected President Judge of the Westmoreland County Court of Common Pleas. The Judge authored two law books entitled “Bench/Bar/Book on Guardianships” and “Mihalich on Adoptions”, used extensively by Pennsylvania attorneys and judges. ; legal advisor for the Westmoreland County Fireman's Association; Solicitor for Westmoreland County Chiefs of Police Association; criminal law instructor for the Pennsylvania State Police; solicitor for the city of Monessen; member of the American Bar Association . Not one to forget his ethnic heritage, he was active in the Monessen and National Croatian Fraternal Union all of his life and was awarded the honor of being named “Croatian Fraternal Union Man of the Year” in 1972. Judge Mihalich retired in 1996. After retirement, he did not rest, but continued to serve as Senior Judge for a number of years. He also had time to expand his garden which he happily shared with his family and many friends ; hunting with his “buddies” at his aptly-named “Grouse Camp” in Clearfield County. Judge Mihalich was the last surviving member of his immediate family. He was also preceded in death by his older brother Leonard A. Mihalich, who paid the supreme sacrifice when his plane was shot down in Germany in World War II. He lost his younger brother, State Representative Herman Mihalich in 1997. The Judge is survived by his sons Leonard A. (Janice) of Ruffs Dale and Gil (Joanne) of Bentleyville; and daughter Gail (Brian) Lever, of Princeton, Massachusetts. He is also survived by two granddaughters and three great-grandchildren and nieces and nephews. The family wishes to thank the staff of Brookdale Senior Living-Latrobe and Grane Hospice for the wonderful care and compassion the Judge and his wife received during their final days. The Judge will be sadly missed by all who knew and loved him. Do to the COVID 19 Pandemic the Judges family has decided to have private visitation and funeral services to help ensure the health and safety of his many friends and associates. The Robert A. Billick Funeral Home, Inc., has been entrusted with the arrangements. . Interment will be next to his wife Pauline in Grandview Cemetery. Donations to the Alzheimer's Association of Pittsburgh 2835 E Carson St. Suite 200 Pittsburgh PA 15203 or the American Cancer Society 320 Blmar Dr Pittsburgh PA 15205 is requested in lieu of flowers. For those wishing to observe the funeral online, please download the zoom app and log on to on Friday beginning at approximately 9:50 am.

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