In Memory

John Bobka (Teacher)

John Bobka (Teacher)

John Joseph Bobka

DUNKIRK — John Joseph Bobka, 84, of Dunkirk passed away Saturday (Feb. 7, 2015) at Brooks Memorial Hospital in Dunkirk.

He was born March 21, 1930, in Cleveland, Ohio,  to the late George (Suzie Svec) Bobka.

John graduated from Baldwin Wallace College in Berea, Ohio with a degree in music education.  He then spent four years of active service with the United States Coast Guard and four years in the Reserves during the Korean War.  He received a master’s degree from Indiana University, Bloomingdale, Indiana.  In 1959 he joined the music faculty at Batavia City Schools and taught string instruments and orchestra until his retirement in 1985. He served as chairman of the Music Department from 1979 on.

In the summer of 1967, he studied with Shinichi Suzuki at Oberlin College in Ohio.  That fall he introduced the Suzuki method of violin teaching in the Batavia Schools and built up a very successful program with students from pre-K through Senior High. During his teaching years, he served as concertmaster of the Genesee Symphony. After his retirement he continued with his music by giving private lessons.  This continued until December 2013 when he had to give up his last student due to his failing vision.

In addition to his love of music, John also enjoyed working with wood. His endeavors went from building a summer cottage in the Adirondack Mountains to handcrafting many pieces of furniture. He was a member of Saint Paul Lutheran Church in Fredonia and served as an Elder and on the Church Council.

He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Priscilla Violette Bobka, who joined the faculty of the Batavia School System in 1960. Daughter Susan (Matthew) Fountain of Dunkirk; grandchildren Jonathan Adrian Bobka Fountain, Sarah Elizabeth Bobka Fountain; brother Rudolph Bobka of Sciota, NY ; along with several nieces and nephews.

There will be no prior calling hours.

An 11 a.m. memorial service will be held on Saturday, Feb. 14 at St. Paul Lutheran Church 334 Temple St., Fredonia, NY 14063. He will be laid to rest in St. Joseph’s Cemetery, Batavia. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Saint Paul Lutheran Church 334 Temple Street, Fredonia, NY 14063 or to Hospice Chautauqua County 20 West Fairmount Ave., Lakewood, NY 14750. To leave a message of condolence please visit or for more information call (585) 343-8260.

Arrangements completed by Gilmartin Funeral Home & Cremation Company, Inc. 329-333 West Main Street Batavia, New York 14020.