Mr. Andrew C. “Grandfather” Szarka, 91, of 17 Belmont Street, passed away early Wednesday morning, May 26, 2010, lovingly surrounded by his family at Massena Memorial Hospital, where he had been a patient since May 16th.
Andy was born March 6, 1919 in Massena, the son of Gregory and Anna Lengyel Szarka. He attended Massena schools. On November 9, 1939, he married Irene Geng at St. Mary’s Catholic Church with Rev. John M. Bellamy, officiating.
He worked for Alcoa for 36 ½ years, retiring in 1975 as a supervisor in the cable mill. He worked in various departments including the wire mill and the covered conductors. Andy was very active in his community, having been a charter member of the Massena Volunteer Rescue Squad and a member of the St. Lawrence Council #1141 Knights of Columbus. He was also a communicant of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, the League of the Sacred Heart, and a member of the Massena Senior Citizens and Massena Moose Lodge #1110.
An avid model remote controlled airplane flyer, he was a member of the Seaway Valley Modelaires, and the Academy of Model Aeronautics. He was a former member of the St. Regis Mohawk Senior Citizens. He enjoyed boating, hunting on Long Sault Island, fishing, camping, and spending time with his grandchildren. Andy also enjoyed gardening, having canned his rewards and was known for his terrific pickles. He was an avid motorcyclist having traveled to Texas, climbed Mount Washington in New Hampshire with his wife, Irene. He enjoyed traveling, having toured nearly all 50 states twice and wintered in Lake Panasoffkee, Florida for nine years. Andy just enjoyed all that life had to offer.
Andy is survived by his wife of nearly 71 years, Irene; three children, Joan Szarka Eddy and her husband, James of Massena, Eric “Rick” Szarka and his companion, Esther Reid of Massena and Andrew S. Szarka and his wife, Kimberly of San Antonio, TX; eight grandchildren, 15 great grandchildren, and one great great grandchild; and several nieces and nephews.
He was predeceased by a son, Jay R. Szarka on April 24, 2002; a grandson, Jay R. Szarka II, in 2006; a sister, Ann Moquin; and two brothers, John and George Szarka.
Friends may call at the Donaldson Funeral Home, Massena, Thursday 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. and Friday 9:30-10:30 a.m. The members of the Knights of Columbus will meet at 7:00 for a memorial service. A Mass of Resurrection will be celebrated Friday 11:00 a.m. at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Massena with Rev. J. Michael Gaffney, pastor, officiating. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery, Massena.
Memorial contributions may be made to Massena Rescue Squad or St. Mary’s Church Memorial Fund.
Condolences may be made online at www.donaldsonfh.com.