Even on his last day, Peter Menk prayed and read the Bible as he did every day.
Menk, who devoted his life to his family, faith and business community, died Wednesday of cancer at his home, surrounded by his children. He was 86.
The retired owner and president of The Menk Co., Menk was raised in Montclair, N.J., and attended Fordham University.
He met his wife, Rosemary Brittingham Menk, who was attending a nearby college. They married and moved to Augusta in 1952 when Menk’s father-in-law offered him a job with his plumbing and mechanical company.
He served as a president of the Augusta Builders Exchange, the Augusta Plumbing & Heating Contractors and the Georgia Plumbing Contractors Association.
He was also a director of Georgia Railroad & Banking Co., Georgia Railroad Bank and First Union of Augusta.
Menk was a board member of St. Joseph Center for Life, and a board member and chairman of St. Joseph Hospital and St. Joseph Ventures. He was also chairman of the Aquinas High School school board.
Paul Menk described his father’s dedication to community boards as a repayment for the kindness that many businessmen showed Menk when he began his career in Augusta.
“He always believed in giving back. He had a philosophy of helping others,” Paul Menk said.
As a member of Augusta National Golf Club, Menk was most pleased taking others for a round of golf, his son said.
Menk and his wife raised six children in Augusta and had nine grandchildren.
“That’s when he was always the happiest – with his family,” his son said.
Family vacations to the beach and mountains, and birthday celebrations surrounded by his grandchildren were his favorite moments, his son said.
Menk was known to many as a quick-humored and good-natured teaser.
“If he liked you, he’d start picking on you and kidding with you right away,” Paul Menk said.
Menk was preceded in death by his wife and a son, Peter. A funeral Mass will be held 11 a.m. Monday at St. Mary on the Hill Catholic Church, with family receiving friends one hour before. Burial will follow at Westover Memorial Park.