Melvyn E. Achtzehn, age 94, of Duquesne, passed away on November 15, 2021. Mel was born on April 20, 1927, in Gratztown (Amyville), PA. He was the son of Edward and Julia (Yablonsky) Achtzehn and came to Duquesne in 1937. After graduating from Duquesne High School, he studied Architecture while attending night school at Duquesne. His studies were cut short after enlisting in the U.S. Marine Corp during WWII, serving as a PFC with the 1st Marine Division in the South Pacific and North China. After his service, Mel worked for U.S. Steel in the Electric Furnace Department. He became owner and operator of an Atlantic Service Station in Duquesne and then had his own distributorship of oil products with the Atlantic Refining Company of Southwestern PA. He owned and operated Achtzehn Auto Supply in Duquesne, before retiring, where he then began working for the Maloy-Schleifer Funeral Home. Mel married Norma Roviaro on June 23, 1949 and had 4 children; Cheryl (Gene) Dudash of Davie, FL, Lori Achtzehn of White Oak, Bonnie (Dr. James ) Acuff of McCandless Twp., and Guy (Marcy) Achtzehn of York, PA. He then was blessed with 6 Grandchildren; Dr. Bethany Dudash (Ed Toland), Nicole Dudash, Dr. Heather Acuff (John Blakeney), Haley Acuff, Dr. Megan Achtzehn (Ryan Myers) and Sydney Achtzehn. Mel belonged to Holy Name Catholic Church of the former Christ the Light of the World Parish, in Duquesne. He served as a Lector, Eucharistic Minister and sang in the choir. Mel served as a custodian for 3 years as well as on the parish council for 6 years, also serving as President. Mel organized the Parish Share plan for Holy Name, running it for many years. Mel belonged to the Knights of Columbus #4210, serving in every office of the organization including as a Past Grand Knight. He also served as the Treasurer of Council #4210 and its Corporation for 43 years. He also enjoyed singing with the Knights of Song. Mel served on the Duquesne Catholic School Board for 4 years and then moved onto the Duquesne City School Board for 4 years. He was then elected to serve on the Duquesne City Council for 6 years before becoming Mayor of the City of Duquesne from 1990-1994. He also has been the only President of the Duquesne Business Advisory Corp (DBAC) from its inception in 1978 to the present. He served as Vice President of the Steel Valley Council of Government for the City as well as serving with the Mon Valley Initiative. His awards include the Rotary, Chamber of Commerce Man of the Year, J.C. Penney Man of the Year, recognized by the House of Representatives, the Senate and the Secretary of the Treasury, Businessman of the Year by the Duquesne Business Men, and received the Community Champions Award from the Pittsburgh Post Gazette and TCI. In his spare time. Mel organized motor coach trips to Seneca Niagara Casino twice a year for over 20 years. He worked tirelessly for his Community, Church, and was a devoted Husband, Father and Grandfather to his family, who loved him dearly. Mel was preceded in death by his parents, brother, Charles (Donnie) Achtzehn and sister, Shirley Mae (Achtzehn) Smith, as well as his wife Norma, in 2019. Visitation will be held on Thursday, November 18 and Friday, November 19, 2021 from 2-4 & 6-8 p.m., at the MALOY-SCHLEIFER FUNERAL HOME, INC., 915 KENNEDY AVE., DUQUESNE, 15110, 412-466-3300, WILLIAM B. SCHLEIFER, SUPERVISOR, WILLIAM BRIAN SCHLEIFER, FUNERAL DIRECTOR, where a Blessing Service will take place on Saturday, November 20, 2021, at 9:30 a.m., followed by a concelebrated Mass of Christian Burial at 10:00 a.m., at Holy Name Church, Duquesne, of St. Thomas the Apostle Parish, with Rev. Thomas Lewandowski as Principal Celebrant. Burial will follow at Holy Name Cemetery, West Mifflin, with Military Honors. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project or to the Way Outfitters.
Originally published November 15, 2021.