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Updated: 12/12/2013 12:38:58PM
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Al Richard Moldroski and Martha Lucille Nixon Moldroski

Al Richard “Dick” Moldroski, 85, of Port Charlotte, Fla., passed away peacefully Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2013, of natural causes.

He was born Aug. 27, 1928, in Terre Haute, Ind.

Al spent most of his career as an Artist and Art Professor in Charleston, Ill., at Eastern Illinois University, before retiring to Rotonda West, Fla., in 1999. He proudly served his country during two tours of duty with the U.S. Army — in Germany as part of the Army of Occupation, and later in Korea with the 62nd Construction Engineers. Al came home to work on his education, receiving a BA in Art and Education from Indiana State University in 1954.

It was while at ISU that he met his wife Martha Nixon. They were married Dec. 19, 1952, in Terre Haute, and later moved to Lansing, Mich., where they started their family. In Lansing, he pursued his MA in Art at Michigan State University. Al taught at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Ill., and Glenville College in Glenville, W.Va., before completing his MFA at the Maryland Institute of Art in 1968. He found his niche as a Professor of Art, teaching at EIU in Charleston from 1963 until he retired in 1993. Al spent many happy years encouraging his students to experience art in other parts of the world, and led many student trips to Europe. During his career, he was an Artist-in-Residence at St. Cloud University in St. Cloud, Minn.; an Exchange Professor at the Portsmouth Polytechnic in Portsmouth, England; and a Visiting Artist at WRSP Zaklad Plastyki, Siedlce, Poland.

As an artist, Al had paintings and other works of art in Art Exhibitions all over the country, including the Chicago Art Institute, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, the Detroit Museum of Art and many others. During his retirement, he was actively involved with his local VFW Post 10476 and American Legion Post 113. He also created a website devoted to the veterans of the 62nd and 85th Engineer Construction Battalions during the Korean War, for which he was recognized and interviewed by CNN in 1999. This work helped reconnect the men he had served with in Korea, and he greatly enjoyed the yearly reunions that followed.

Al loved his children and grandchildren, and enjoyed showing them the sights and sounds of Southwest Florida.

• • •

Martha Lucille “Nikki” Nixon Moldroski, 81, also of Port Charlotte, passed away peacefully Monday, Sept. 2, 2013, of natural causes.

She was born March 20, 1932, in Pike County, Ind., where she grew up with her sister, Lorice, and brother, Mike.

Martha attended Indiana State University, where she received a BA in Education, and met her future husband, Al “Dick” Moldroski.

After caring for her own children at home for a few years, Martha started her career as an elementary school teacher in 1968, retiring after 30 years from the Mattoon, Ill., school district. She adored her schoolchildren and, even after retiring, she volunteered to tutor children in her community of Rotonda West. Martha was an avid bridge player and attended many bridge tournaments throughout the years, and she was a member of a number or organizations, including the Rotonda VFW Ladies Auxiliary. She fought and won a tough battle with breast cancer during her retirement years with grace and style.

Her greatest joys were her children and grandchildren, and she was always thrilled to spend time with them.

• • •

Al and Martha are survived by their two daughters, Lisa Kylie (Michael) Brauer of New York City, N.Y., and Denise (Dave Greep) Moldroski of East Helena, Mont.; and their three grandchildren, Sophia and Erik Brauer, and Gavin Mott. They were preceded in death by their son, Kurt Moldroski; and their brothers, Donald Moldroski and Mike Nixon.

Inurnment for Al and Martha will be in the “Wall of Honor” at Sarasota National Cemetery in Sarasota, Fla. You may express condolences online at

Arrangements are by Englewood Community Funeral Home with Private Crematory, Englewood, Fla.

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