Howard W. Eckert Jr., 87, former mayor and longtime borough councilman of Sellersville

Posted: March 10, 2013

Howard W. Eckert Jr., 87, former mayor and longtime borough councilman of Sellersville, Bucks County, died Tuesday, March 5, at St. Luke's Hospital in Bethlehem, Pa., of head injuries suffered in a fall near his Telford retirement residence on Feb. 26.

Mr. Eckert had just finished loading groceries when he fell in a parking lot. He was rushed to the trauma unit at St. Luke's for treatment, his family said.

From July 1969 to November 2000, Mr. Eckert served on the borough council, stepping down in 2000 to become mayor.

He served as mayor until March 2006, when he moved to Lutheran Community at Telford, a retirement facility.

His family said Mr. Eckert was a careful steward of borough matters, especially public safety.

"A big priority of his was having a good-quality police department to keep the citizens safe and secure," said his daughter, Donna Balascak. "He was very, very interested in trying to do right by Sellersville."

Born in Hellertown, he was the son of the late Howard W. Eckert Sr. and the former Mildred Apple.

Mr. Eckert was an Army Air Corps veteran, having served as a navigator during World War II.

He graduated from Pennsylvania State University in 1950 with a bachelor's degree in civil engineering and then worked as a civil engineer in Lakehurst, N.J., and Buffalo, N.Y., before moving to Sellersville. He was general superintendent at the former George Frank Inc.

In 1964, with Thomas Malone of Bethlehem, he founded the civil-engineering and land-surveying firm of Eckert & Malone of Sellersville. He sold the firm but kept working into his early 70s as a consultant.

Mr. Eckert was a member of St. Michael's Lutheran Church in Sellersville. He ushered and was on the church council.

He was a member of the American Legion Nase-Kraft Post No. 255, Sellersville, an associate member of the Sellersville Fire Department, and a Mason.

Mr. Eckert was a past president of the Pennsylvania State Association of Boroughs. He was also a member of the Maskenozha Rod and Gun Club of Bushkill, Pa.

A life member of the Penn State Alumni Association, Mr. Eckert was a Nittany Lions fan and had season tickets for decades.

He and his wife also had season tickets for Pennridge High School football games. He volunteered for Sellersville's annual Kids Fishing Derby. A hunter and fisherman, he also loved tennis.

He was the husband of the former Beatrice Strohl for 62 years.

Besides his wife and daughter, he is survived by another daughter, Wendy Karamihalis, and four grandchildren.

A funeral service will be at 11 a.m., Saturday, March 9, at St. Michael's Evangelical Lutheran Church, 25 E. Church St., Sellersville, Pa. 18960, to which donations may be made. Friends may call starting at 9:30 a.m.

Interment with full military honors will follow in Sellersville Cemetery.

Contact Bonnie L. Cook at 215-854-2611 or

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