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(Jan 14, 2014)

DR. LEWIS M. MOTYCKA entered his heavenly home on January 12, 2014 after a brief illness and a lifetime of service to others. He was 89 years of age. Lewis is survived by his wife of 64 years, Helen Valasek Motycka of Ironton, Ohio; sons Dale L. Motycka of Evansville, Indiana; Lawrence M. Motycka (Katherine) of Fayetteville, Georgia; and daughter Kathleen M. Smith (Jeffrey) of Huntington, West Virginia. He is also survived by grandchildren Michael A. Motycka (Ann), Lenexa, Kansas; Matthew A. Motycka (Jenna), Evansville, Indiana; Spencer M. Smith, Toledo, Ohio; Alexandra C. Smith, Huntington, West Virginia; and great granddaughter Mara Jane Motycka. He was born in 1924 near Toledo, Ohio, to parents Martin and Frances Motycka, and was the third of four children. He graduated high school and entered the United States Army in 1942. A member of America's Greatest Generation, he served in Europe with 'A' Battery, 499th Armored Field Artillery, 14th Armored Division. He was wounded in battle and was honorably discharged December 1, 1945. He returned home and entered Veterinary School at The Ohio State University. He married Helen Valasek in 1949 and graduated from Veterinary School in 1950. At graduation, Lewis and Helen were recruited to move to Lawrence County to confront a hog cholera epidemic. He became the County's first licensed veterinarian, and served families and their animals throughout the tri-state area. He delivered more foals and calves than he could count, and managed a busy large and small animal practice for nearly 59 years. For many years his summers consisted of holding numerous rabies clinics in the county, serving as veterinarian to the Lawrence County Fair, squeezing in a week of fishing at the Kitty Hawk N.C. pier, and getting ready for Ohio State Football in the fall. He will be remembered as a devoted caregiver to countless family pets and a forever Buckeye. Lewis also served his community as a founding board member of the Hecla Water Association, was a Fourth Degree Knight of Columbus, and was a member of the Rotary and Serra Clubs. The family would like to acknowledge the dedication and service of all who took care of Lewis in his final days, especially the nursing staff at Kings Daughters Medical Center ICU. Those who would like to honor his memory are invited to contribute a gift in his name to St. Joseph Catholic School in Ironton, Ohio Endowment Fund P.O. Box 499, Ironton, Ohio 45638. Visitation will be Tuesday Jan. 14, 2014 6 to 9 p.m. at O'Keefe-Baker Funeral Home with the rosary at 8:30 p.m. Funeral Mass with be at St. Joseph Church Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014 at 11 a.m. with Father David Huffman officiating. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery. Post 8850V.F.W. will perform military rites.

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