Marine in full uniform with a smile on his face.

A Life Member of the Seacoast Detachment of MCL

John Felix Buchalski, age 93, formerly of Portsmouth, NH, passed away peacefully at his home in the Residence at Silver Square, Dover NH on November 15, 2023.

John was born on November 20, 1929, to the late Mr. and Mrs. John E. Buchalski of Brooklyn, NY. He was preceded in death by Inge, his loving wife of 67 years, his sister, Joan, and his grandson, Jonathan. He is survived by his brother Richard and his children, Martina Lee and her husband Curtis Lee, his daughter Carol Buchalski and her husband Leigh Smith, and his son Thomas Buchalski and his wife Lisa. John had four grandchildren Joshua, Alexandra, Catherine, and Madyson and was blessed to have five great grandchildren, Jayden, Skylar, Emmett, Nathaniel, and Ava.

John was a graduate of St. Anselm’s College and the University of New Hampshire. He enlisted at the age of 15 and received his first military training at Camp Smith, NY as a member of the NY State Guard 5th Infantry Regiment. He saw combat in the Korean War while serving with the US Marine Corps and served during the Vietnam Era. After 27 years in both the Marines and the Air Force, he retired as a TSgt while serving as Acting First Sergeant of the 509th Air Refueling Squadron at Pease Air Force Base, NH in 1974. During his military career he received numerous awards and decorations, including the Air Force Commendation Medal, the Marine Corps Combat Action Ribbon, Korean War Service Medal, WWII Victory Medal, Korean PUC, Korean Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, WWII Occupation Medal, Army & Air Force Good Conduct Medals, Vietnam Era Ribbon, New York State Conspicuous Service Star and Medal of Merit, Navy Meritorious Unit Commendations Award, UN Korean Service Medal, AF Small Arms Expert Ribbon and other certificates of appreciation and recognition.

After retirement, John ventured into a new career with the Federal Government, serving as Chief of Police at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, and later with the Department of the Army as an Army OPSEC Intelligence Officer and Crime Prevention Officer for the Military Traffic Management Command. After 15 years of civilian service, he retired as a Physical Security Inspector from the Provost Marshal’s Office at Ft. Devens, MA. Throughout his service, he attended several Department of Defense and civilian schools and training specializing in security, counter-terrorism and law enforcement. During his employment as an Army civilian, John was awarded several Meritorious Service Awards, the Army Commanders Award for Civilian service, and the 40 Year Federal Service Award. He also received the US Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation while working at the Brunswick Naval Air Station, Brunswick, ME.

John volunteered for over 50 years with the Boy Scouts of America and served in various leadership positions. He was awarded the Boy Scout Silver Beaver Award by Major General Shoemaker, USA, Chairman of the Transatlantic Council, Germany in 1971 and received the Catholic St. George Emblem Award from the Diocese of Fargo, ND for his services to the Catholic Youth in Scouting and was a Wood Badge recipient.

Throughout his military and civilian service, John was affiliated with many clubs and organizations. His affiliations include 4th Degree Knights of Columbus, 1st and 2nd Marine Division Association, Non-Commissioned Officer Association, Air Force Security Police Association, Marine Corps Seagoing Marine Association, Marine Corps League, Air Force Sergeants Association, Charter member of the Marine Corps Memorial Club, San Francisco, CA, VFW Portsmouth Chapter, DAV Portsmouth Chapter #4 and Lifetime Member of the DAV, Operations Security Professionals, Association of Former Intelligence Officers, New York Society of Professional Investigators, Toastmasters International and the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

John loved his family dearly and was extremely proud of his children and his grandchildren’s many accomplishments. John was an avid storyteller and he loved to share his memories about his military service, and his days as a young Marine and Airman. He and Inge will always be remembered for their long-standing Buchalski Family Oktoberfest Celebrations with family and friends.

Visiting hours are 4 to 6 pm on Monday, November 27, 2023 at Farrell Funeral Home, 684 State Street, Portsmouth, NH. A funeral service is scheduled at 10 am on Tuesday, November 28, 2023, at The Immaculate Conception Church, 98 Summer Street, Portsmouth, NH. Burial will be at the New Hampshire State Veterans Cemetery in Boscawen, NH. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Disabled American Veterans (DAV), Room 515, Attention: DAV, 275 Chestnut Street, Manchester, NH 03101.

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