• Special to The Sun

J.C. Moraja, retired local banker, dies

J.C. Moraja, 77, of Versailles, widower of Barbara Moraja, died Thursday April 6, 2017, at his home with his children beside him. Born Jan. 14, 1940, in Springfield, he was the son of the late Cecil and Harriett Montgomery Moraja. He graduated from St. Joe Prep in Bardstown and was recruited by Paul "Bear" Bryant to play football for the University of Kentucky. He received an athletic scholarship to the University of Kentucky and played football under Coach Blanton Collier. He then moved to Anchorage, Alaska, where he served active duty for the United States Army. After 28 years of service in the Army Reserves, he retired as a lieutenant colonel. He began his professional career in 1965 with General Electric in Louisville and then moved to Kentucky Utilities in 1971. In 1973, he began a 32-year career with the United Bank and Trust Company, retiring as president and CEO in 2005. He was a devoted parishioner of St. Leo's Roman Catholic Church in Versailles, helping to start the local Knights of Columbus organization. He was an active member in the Woodford Chamber of Commerce and the Economic Development Authority. He co-led the effort in developing the Woodford County Community Stadium, which was later dedicated in memory of his late wife, Barbara Moraja. He was a passionate supporter of UK athletics, an especially avid University of Kentucky football fan. Survivors include three children, Linda Moraja Nash (Chuck), Deanne Powers (John), Missouri, and Mike Moraja (Melissa), North Carolina; two brothers, Cecil Moraja (Jane), Florida, and Dick Moraja (Betty), Lebanon; nine grandchildren, Nicholas Nash, Katye Laine Nash, Jake Moraja, Joshua Moraja, Madison Moraja, Isabella Moraja, Jack Powers, A.J. Powers, and William Powers; two nephews, Richard Moraja (Pam) and Bill Moraja (Becky); and a niece, Laura Moraja. A mass of Christian burial was conducted Monday, April 10, at St. Leo Catholic Church by Fr. Danny Schwendeman. Burial was in Rose Crest Cemetery. Casket bearers were Ben Crain, Donald Carson, Ralph Combs, Jim Rouse, Bill Ahern, Bill Frye, John Powers and Chuck Nash. Honorary bearers were Joe Brandel, Bob Clemens, Jim Hardin, Bill Curd, Walter Fister, Howard Smith, Doug O'Brien and Jerry Muniz. Clark Legacy Center, Versailles Road, Frankfort, was in charge of arrangements. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) for his granddaughter, Madison Moraja. Make checks payable to JDRF, memo, Moraja; 205 Regency Executive Park Drive, Suite 105, Charlotte, NC 28217. Condolences may be expressed at www.clarklegacycenter.com.

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