SWOYERSVILLE —Nicholas Gidula, 81, formerly of Swoyersville, died of natural causes on Friday, Dec. 20,2013, in Mesa, Ariz., where he was living with his son, Charles.
Born and raised in Moosic, a son of Nicholas and Helen Gidula, Nick left home in 1950 after graduating from high school to join the U.S. Navy during the Korean War. After being honorably discharged in 1953, Nick moved to New Jersey where he worked for several years for Palermo's Plumbing and Heating.
Later he moved his family back to Northeastern Pennsylvania and worked for both Walker's and Luzerne Plumbing. After retiring and the death of his beloved wife, he lived with his son, Christopher, in Mason City, Iowa, in 2006 and 2007 before moving with Chris to Crawfordville, Fla., where he resided from 2007 to 2013. In February 2013, he moved to live with his son, Charles, in Mesa, and that is where he lived until his passing.
Nick was a devoted husband and father. His family was his biggest source of joy. His extended family, nieces and nephews remember him fondly as always having a smile on his face and laughter in his heart.
He also was very proud that both his sons also served in the U.S. Navy and that his son, Chris, left the Navy and retired from the U.S. Army in 2006 after a 23-year career. He was also very proud of his daughter, Nichole, for her years of service in the U.S. Air Force as an in-flight medical technician. Nick was also filled with pride when his oldest grandson, Nick, enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps.
His grandchildren knew how much he loved them and how proud he was of his family.
Nick was an animal lover as well and never was there a dog who didn't instantly embrace him. He had a similar effect on babies. He epitomized the old axiom: you must be a good man if children and animals love you!
Nick picked up golf in his early 50s and was an avid "hacker" till shortly before his death. Anyone who knew him knew his blood was St. Louis Cardinal red! Nick attended the 1964, 1967, 1985 and 1987 World Series in St. Louis, rooting on his beloved Cardinals!
Nick was preceded in death by his wife of 44 years, Marie, who passed away in February 2006. Nick was also preceded in death by his brothers, Mickey, Jack and George; and sisters, Helen and Nancy.
He is survived by his twin sons, Charles and Christopher; daughters, Nichole and son-in-law, Chip, and Caroline and son-in-law, Chris. Nick also leaves behind his grandchildren, Nick, Alisha, Meggy, Vanessa, Charles Jr., Logan, Chandler and Tyler; his two great-grandchildren, Alexander and Jaylin; and his sister, Mary.
At his request, Nick was cremated in Arizona. There will be a wake held in his memory on Jan. 17 at Betz-Jastremski Funeral Home, Bennett Street, Luzerne. His funeral Mass will be at St. Nicholas Byzantine Church, 271 Tripp St., Swoyersville, followed by a memorial reception at the American Legion Hall on Shoemaker Street, Swoyersville. Due to it being winter in Pennsylvania, interment will not occur until sometime in Spring 2014.