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Obituaries

Financial expert Joseph Petruska followed sports to unwind

| Tuesday, Aug. 31, 2010

Joseph Petruska was a morning person.

While the morning doldrums had a grip on many at his workplace, particularly on Mondays, the father of three from Mt. Lebanon needed just a couple of things to get revved for the day -- his morning newspaper, a cup of joe and the ear of another sports fan to bend on the day after a game, family and friends said.

Joseph Emil Petruska of Mt. Lebanon, a senior vice president financial consultant with Bill Few Associates, died Saturday, Aug. 28, 2010. He was 61.

Michael K. Kauffelt II, president and chief investment officer for the North Hills investment firm, remembered Mr. Petruska as a dedicated worker and family man who had a way with small-business owners, many of whom struggled during the recession.

"We were all pretty shocked here," Kauffelt said. "He was very personable. He'll definitely be missed."

A board member of the Mt. Lebanon High School Hockey Association, Mr. Petruska was described by family and friends as an avid sports fan with a passion for Pittsburgh teams.

Before joining Bill Few Associates in 1993, Mr. Petruska worked at Cigna Financial Corp., where he specialized in working with small-business owners and executives to coordinate investment, business, estate and insurance planning.

His background in those areas would prove essential, and he was instrumental in the firm developing its estate planning division.

"He became the firm's expert on estate investment," Kauffelt said.

Most mornings, before starting his day working the phones with clients, Mr. Petruska was a fixture in the firm's lunchroom, where he often was seen sipping on coffee and scanning a half-folded copy of the sports section.

He often donated his time to support Catholic Charities of Pittsburgh.

Mr. Petruska is survived by his children, Joseph Daniel Petruska, Karrah Elaine Petruska and Elise Anne Petruska; sisters, Martha Petruska, Joanna Spisak and Mary Beth Joscak; and former wife, Dr. Susan McMahon Petruska.

Visitation will be from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. today in Laughlin Memorial Chapel, 222 Washington Road, Mt. Lebanon. A Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Wednesday in St. Bernard Church. Interment will be private.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Mario Lemieux Foundation, 816 Fifth Ave., Sixth Floor, Pittsburgh, PA 15219.

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