Vernon S. Fitzgerald, 90, of Lewis Run, formerly of Bingham, a loving husband, dedicated father and grandfather, went to be with his Lord and Savior on Tuesday (March 6, 2012) at his residence, surrounded by his loving family.
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Born Jan. 3, 1922, at home on the family farm in Hottleville, he was the youngest of nine children of the late Sylvester and Bertha Eminger Fitzgerald. On Jan. 24, 1947, he married the love of his life, Ida Louise Moore Fitzgerald, who survives. They lived in Bingham for more than 50 years, where they raised their family before moving to Lewis Run in 2005 to reside with their son.
Mr. Fitzgerald attended high school in Seigel. On Feb. 24, 1943, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy. He was stationed at Bainbridge, Md., for boot camp and then trained at the Armed Guard Gunnery School in Littlecreek, Va. He served aboard an oil tanker, the S.S. Maley; and two liberty ships; the S.S. William Wirt and S.S. Edwin W. Moore. During his service, he attained the rank of Gunner's Mate Third Class and traveled to several ports in North and South America, Africa, Europe and the Philippines. He was honorably discharged on Feb. 3, 1946.
Following the service, he returned to his life-long career as a driller for Fitzgerald Drilling working in Pennsylvania, New York state, Kentucky, West Virginia and Ohio. He retired in 1984.
He enjoyed fishing, hunting, reading, playing card games, working crossword puzzles, watching sports on TV, traveling and especially family get-togethers. He never missed a graduation, wedding or family reunion. He was a devoted lifelong member of the Free Methodist Church of Cyclone, and also attended Bible Study at the Overcomers Church of Faith in Aiken.
Surviving is his wife Ida of 65 years; three daughters, Sandra (Jim) Beasley of Manassas, Va., Nancy (Harold) Camp of Ekron, Ky., and Judy (Tom) Everly of Lamont; three sons, Lawrence (Norma) Fitzgerald of Strasburg, Ohio, Dan (Carol) Fitzgerald of Lewis Run, and Terry (Liz) Fitzgerald of Taylorsville, N.C.; 18 grandchildren; 32 great-grandchildren; four great-great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by two sons, Steve "Mickey" Fitzgerald and Robert "Bobby" Fitzgerald; one daughter, Kathy Fitzgerald; one daughter-in-law, Cindy Swartzfager Fitzgerald; six brothers; and two sisters.
Family will be receiving friends in the Hollenbeck-Cahill Funeral Homes Inc., East Main Street, from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday and again on Friday from noon to 1 p.m., at which time funeral services will be held with the Rev. Frank Hill, pastor of the Overcomers Church of Faith, officiating. Military honors will be accorded at the funeral home after the service. Burial will be in McKean Memorial Park, Lafayette.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Cyclone Free Methodist Church, Cyclone, PA 16726; or the Overcomers Church of Faith in Aiken.
Online condolences may be made at www.hollenbeckcahill.com
Published in The Bradford Era from Mar. 7 to Mar. 13, 2012