PALMYRA, VIRGINIA - George Bernard Bockman, Jr. of Palmyra, Virginia unexpectedly passed away on December 24, 2013. Devotedly by his side was his wife Jean, along with their daughters Shawn and Margaret, son Richard and son-in-law Michael. George is survived by his sweetheart and wife of more than 51 years, Gloria Jean (Gourley) Bockman; daughters and sons-in-law Shawn Marie and David Long and Margaret Dolores and Michael Arnold; and son Richard Seldon Bockman. George is also survived by his grandchildren Stephanie, Elizabeth, Ashlie, Catherine, Tyler, Taylor, Nicholas and Benjamin; his mother Dolores Ida (Smith) Bockman and his sisters Susan Deaner (Chuck) and Nadia Murphy (Tim), his best friend Bill Smith, honorary daughter Kim Sipowitz and family, and a large extended family that includes his sisters-in-law (Joann, Norma, Carolyn, Sue and Betty), aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews throughout the country. George was preceded in death by his father George Bernard Bockman, Sr. and his brother Richard Joseph Bockman. George was born October 18, 1941 in Geneva, Illinois. Thanks to his father's military career, George had the fortune to live throughout the country and England before becoming a Hampton Crabber for 40 years and eventually settling in Palmyra, Va. George proudly served his country in the United States Army as a paratrooper with the 101st "Screaming Eagles" Airborne Division. After 25 years of dedicated service as a firefighter, inspector and training officer, George retired as a Station Officer, Captain from the City of Hampton Fire Department in 1996. After "retirement" George continued to operate his business, G.B. General Contracting and perform inspections for the Hampton City Schools as the Safety Liaison Officer. Looking forward to true retirement, George and Jean moved to Lake Monticello in 2004. Thanks to his friend, Scott Morris and to the chagrin of his wife, George embarked on a new career with the Fluvanna County Schools as a substitute teacher, transportation specialist, coach and athletic department jack-of-all-trades. Coming second only to his family, George was an avid golfer and enthusiastically swung a club as often as he could. George believed in doing his civic duty, most notably with the American Legion and various youth sports organizations. In addition to his love of his family and golfing, his other great passion was coaching not just in sports but life and everyone who had the pleasure of knowing George will be forever thankful for his efforts. On Sunday, December 29, 2013 everyone is invited to share their memories of George at an informal gathering at 11:00 am at Fluvanna County High School, 1918 Thomas Jefferson Parkway, Palmyra, Va. The family will receive friends starting at 2:30 at Saints Peter and Paul Roman Catholic Church, 4309 Thomas Jefferson Parkway, Palmyra, Va. A Christian mass will be celebrated following visitation by Father Gerald Francis Musuubire at 4:00 PM. Reception and light refreshments to follow. The family would appreciate any expressions of sympathy to be in the form of donations to Fluvanna High School Girls Softball Program or Lake Monticello Volunteer Fire and Rescue.
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Published in Daily Press on Dec. 28, 2013