Names From Gravestones at Holy Cross Polish National Catholic Cemetery, Commack, New York

Compiled by John A. Drobnicki

This list of surnames originally appeared in the Polish Genealogical Society Newsletter, Vol. 15, No. 1 (Spring 1992). Copyright 1992. Polish diacritical marks are not included.

Holy Cross Polish National Catholic Cemetery, located on Old Commack Road in Commack (Suffolk County), Long Island, opened in 1939 and is one of only two Polish cemeteries in the New York City area -- the other is on Staten Island. It is owned and operated by Holy Cross Polish National Catholic Church, 159 15th Street, Brooklyn, New York 11215. The church was founded in 1912, and since 1975 the pastor has been Rev. Wieslaw Pietruszka. [Note: Since publication of this article, Holy Cross parish closed and sold its Brooklyn building in 2007 -- a photo of the empty lot where the church stood can be seen in a 2008 blog posting -- and the parish has relocated to Commack. They have been holding services in the cemetery's chapel while a new church is being built next to the cemetery. You can see photos of the new Holy Cross church under construction here and here, and photos of the cornerstone blessing ceremony, conducted by the PNCC Prime Bishop.]

The cemetery, which includes a chapel that was built in 1953-54, is situated on what had once been a 60 acre plot of land. The financial and physical burdens of maintaining the property, however, resulted in the church selling 45 acres of its land, leaving 6 acres designated for burials and 9 acres for future expansion. Many of those buried there were leaders in Brooklyn's Polish-American community and in the Polish National Alliance of Brooklyn.

The overwhelming majority, if not all, of the gravestones were made by Remis Monument Co., 69-31 Metropolitan Avenue, Middle Village (Queens County), New York 11379, and many of them are in Polish. What follows is an alphabetical list of names and dates copied from the gravestones, not including other information such as "Wife" or "Rest in Peace." As the reader will see, some of the stones had birth but not death dates -- these people may still be alive, or they may have been buried elsewhere by family members who did not know of their cemetery plots in Commack.

To quote from Holy Cross' Diamond Jubilee Memorial Book, the cemetery has "the calm, serene atmosphere one would like for loved ones who have chosen the Polish National Catholic Cemetery as their final resting place."

Surnames, A - D
Surnames, E - J
Surnames, K - R
Surnames, S - Z

[Note: Since the original publication of this article in 1992, photos of many of the gravestones have been added to the Find a Grave website.]

Thanks to William Skeith for the email-hider.

Last modified: Apr. 15, 2014

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