Francis Blaskovich, teacher and coach in Burlington County

Francis J. Blaskovich
Francis J. Blaskovich
Posted: November 21, 2013

John Blaskovich came home one afternoon after being cut from his freshman high school baseball team and was relaxing on the family couch.

When his father, Francis, walked in, John recalled, "he said, 'You're going to go out for track tomorrow.'

"I said, 'I don't want to.' He said, 'You're not going to sit around and do nothing.'

"My dad felt sports was a great builder of character."

On Saturday, Nov. 16, Francis J. Blaskovich, 85, of Edgewater Park, a former teacher and football coach in Burlington County, died of congestive heart failure at Samaritan Inpatient Hospice Center in Mount Holly.

Mr. Blaskovich's encouragement motivated his son. John Blaskovich competed in high hurdles and javelin at Burlington City High School for four years, he said. And he became a linebacker for Colorado State University's football team from 1979 to 1983.

Francis Blaskovich taught American history and civics from 1962 to 1971 at Pemberton High School, where, for several years, he was the head football coach, his son said.

Mr. Blaskovich taught those subjects from 1972 into the early 1980s at Shawnee High School, where he was the assistant varsity football coach. He retired in 1990 after teaching physical education at Lenape High School.

In addition, his son said, Mr. Blaskovich was a high school track and wrestling official for the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association.

At Mr. Blaskovich's encouragement, his other son, Francis E., played football as a defensive lineman for the University of South Carolina in the 1980s.

His two daughters played sports in high school, but not in college, John Blaskovich said.

Born in Yorkville, Ohio, Mr. Blaskovich graduated in 1946 from what is now the Linsly School in Wheeling, W.Va., and served as an Army military policeman in postwar Japan.

He earned a bachelor's degree in education and history in 1955 and a master's in education administration in 1956, both at Memphis State University, where he was a defensive end on the football team for three years.

Besides his sons, Mr. Blaskovich is survived by daughters Mary Pallis and Barbara Hampton, a sister, and 11 grandchildren. His wife, Barbara, died in 2000.

A visitation was set from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 21, at Mount Laurel Home for Funerals, 212 Ark Rd., Mount Laurel, N.J. 08054, followed by an 11:30 a.m. funeral service there, with burial at Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Wrightstown.

Donations may be made in his honor to the Moorestown High School football program, 350 Bridgeboro Rd., Moorestown, N.J. 08057.

Condolences may be offered to the family through the funeral home.

610-313-8134 @WNaedele

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