Chevalier Leonard J. Sulima-Suligowski
On Thursday, June 19, 2008, at 1825hrs, at New York City's Bellevue Hospital, Leonard J. Sulima-Suligowski passed away, from complications of a stroke-induced coma, which took place on the evening of Monday June 16th, when he was found near his home computer by neighbors and friends. Leonard passed away at 1825hrs in hospital with his only surviving son, Rik at his side.
Chevalier Leonard J. Sulima-Suligowski was the most respected Polish Heraldic Artist of the 20th century.
His dozens of years of research on the subject became widely known and respected the world over. He was a resident of Greenpoint, Brooklyn all his life. For many years, he had been the Director of Heraldry and the College of Heraldry for The Polish Nobility Association Foundation headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland, having been affiliated with them since 1975. During his tenure with the P.N.A.F., he was the recipient of the following Chivalric awards:
Knight Grand Cross Royal Order of Piast, Knight Grand Cross Royal Order of Jagiello,
Knight Officer of the Order of Polish Restituta which was awarded to him personally by the President of the late Polish Government (In Exile) for "Active participation in the Political Struggle for the Freedom of Poland," and also for his contributions to the continuation of promoting The Arts and Culture associated with Polish Heraldry. He was also a Knight of Grace with the Hospitaler Order of Saint John, The Knights of Malta.
The walls of Chevalier Suligowski's Brooklyn home were literally lined with framed awards, accolades, diplomas and certificates of various organizations, as well as his beloved Navy memerobilia.
His Glen Miller collection is famous, as is his Jazz Collection from his days as a radio announcer for Station WGBB, Freeport, N.Y., after his Military service in the United States Navy during the Korean War.
Chevalier Suligowski was a U.S. Navy Veteran of the Korean War who served aboard four aircraft carriers, including the famous USS Bon Homme Richard, built at the Brooklyn Navy yard. He was honorably discharged with five years of service as an Aviation Machinist Mate-Second Class Petty Officer, and receiving the following awards: Navy Combat Action Ribbon, US Presidential Unit Citation, US Navy Unit Citation, US Navy Good Conduct Medal, US National Defense Medal, Korean Service Medal (with Star), Korean Presidential Unit citation, Korean War Service Medal, and the United Nations Service Medal with clasp "KOREA."
As well, Chevalier Suligowski was in possession of various American Legion & VFW Service Medals. Leonard was a published author of several short stories and newspaper articles in addition to his editorial work as Editor of `The White Eagle', the bi-annual journal for the P.N.A.F. until recent years due to the organizations' internal issues. He also had a huge imput into the much needed resource (during the Cold War period) "NOBILITY OF THE POLISH COMMONWEALTH" PNAF, 1996, ISBN: 0-958-3484-2-1
Chevalier Leonard J. Suligowski was a Life Member of The American Legion and a member of The Veterans of Foreign Wars. Additionally, he was a member and consultant to the Polish Genealogical Society of America. Leonard was 79 years old, passing just before his 80th birthday.
He is survived by his only living son, Rik (Suligowski) Fox, who is in his own right, a world-famous musician/celebrity, current Vice-President of the Polish American Congress of Southern California, and founder of the `Living-History' re-enactment group originally named after him: "Suligowski's Regiment", now dedicated to his memory, a group which has produced the first official portrayal in America, of the Polish winged hussar cavalry in American History by his son Rik, due directly to Leonard's Influence on his son, the last of the Suligowski line in the U.S. Leonard Suligowski's efforts were the reason responsible for getting Rik's winged hussar presentation to make U.S. History in the 2002 NYC Pulaski Parade, for the first time in American History. Additionally, he was virtually one of the first to sign a petition to retain a Polish Museum in Rapperswil, Switzerland.
It has been said about him: "Chevalier Leonard Suligowski was a Nobleman, a Gentleman, and a True Patriot who served his country both, in times of Peace and War. He is also one of the best read historians on Polish history that anyone ever had the pleasure to know. He has been for many years one of the driving forces behind the success of The Polish Nobility Association and a number of other ventures focused on raising the profile of nobility and Polish nobility in particular. He truly touched the lives of everyone as he walked through his. And that was a LOT of people."
"Chevalier Leonard J. Sulima-Suligowski is now at Peace, among the other great members of the Sulima Ancestry, that he researched and wrote about, both in spirit and in fact. Many had given up their lives for Poland, in many different ways. We hope that he will be counted among them, and his unceasing contribution(s) and effort(s), to and about, Polish History and Heraldry, of, to, and for, the Polish Cause, should never be forgotten."
Bless you all, who have taken the time for a moment of silence and recognition with bowed heads, to remember the passing of a great and noble knight, Polish Nobleman, Historian, Father, and best friend, Chevalier Leonard. J. Sulima-Suligowski.
Services will be held at Rago Evergreen Funeral Home (718-383-8600; ask for Leslie Rago) and St. Stanislaus Kostka Church, respectively, both in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, at a date soon to be determined. If you are interested in attending either service in Brooklyn, or one to be held in Los Angeles, at Our Lady of Bright Mount Church on Adams Street, please email us below and let us know so we can advise you on the details.
His son asks that either Mass Cards be offered in lieu of flowers or, donations to either Navy Relief, or the Salvation Army. Leonard was also a member of the Organ Donations Organization and has now helped the lives of others through his wishes. Being a former Navy man, it was Leonards wishes to be cremated and have his ashes scattered among both, the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, returning him to the sea, which he loved so fondly.
With the Saints give rest, O Christ, to the soul of Thy servant Leonard, where there is neither sickness, nor sorrow, nor sighing,
but life everlasting. Amen.