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Gary Sefcak - Year Entered 1952

Gary Sefcak



 
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07/21/15 07:46 PM #1    

Cledice Decker (1959)

From Sue Whitlark:
 
My wonderful brother-in-law, Gary Sefcak, shown here with my sister Karla, died Monday afternoon, July 20th, 2015, surrounded by his wife, two children, and three of his grand-children who he loved beyond words. Gary was 81 1/2 years old, and he and my sister had 47 years together. Gary was a kind and gentle man, always positive, highly supportive of others, and we will miss that twinkle in his beautiful eyes. Gary fought the good fight and He is now resting in peace. We love him, and look forward to being with him once again.
Sue Whitlark's photo.

 

From daughter, Kim Sefcak Hollis:
 

We would like to thank our family and friends for their ongoing prayers and heartfelt thoughts for my dad, Gary Sefcak, this past week. Gary took his last brea...th late this afternoon. The medical staff made him comfortable and he was surrounded by his family and the love from others. As a family we have decided not to hold a memorial service. In lieu of flowers, a gift to a charity of your choice would be our wish.


07/22/15 05:46 PM #2    

Cledice Decker (1959)


07/23/15 08:40 AM #3    

Garry Pifer (1960)


Gary Sefcak was my friend, a friend for over 50 years.

Although not introduced to him I knew who he was from about 1954 or 1955.  At the F.O.T. in Texas he was in a wheel chair following his accident and his accident was widely discussed.  I saw and knew who he was at subsequent Feasts and at services at Pasadena from 1960.  I really began to know him and become a friend when I was hired to work in Mail Reading in the Fall of 1962 where he was my supervisor and trainer.  By my senior year he had been promoted from supervisor of mail reading to assistant manager of the department and it was Gary that called me into the office and gave me the biggest and most encouraging challenge of my college years.

I had been told that when I graduated that I “might be sent out as a second man.”  That was never anything I wanted.  But Gary changed my direction.  He told me that the department would like to hire me full-time when I graduated if, as he put it, I could make myself so valuable that they couldn’t afford to let me go.  How valuable I became I can’t say but they did hire me.

Connie and I got married on July 19, 1964 (51 years ago last Sunday) and Gary was there.  He gave us a wedding present that I have always remembered with pleasant memories, a bottle of Southern Comfort.

In 1965 Connie and I moved into a duplex and a few months later the occupants of the other unit moved out.  And our new neighbor was, you guessed it, Gary.  It was while living there that Gary bought a newer car and he sold his old car to us, a 1956, red and white, Buick.

This was not the last time we would be neighbors with Gary.  In 1970 Gary informed me that a house across the street from where he and Karla were living in Altadena was for rent.  We rented the house and moved there late in the Summer, to be neighbors for another year and a half.

We moved to Illinois from Pasadena in the Fall of 1973.  Our first visit back was in 1976 and one of those I was able to see and visit was Gary.

We didn’t stay in close contact but knew that Gary and Karla had moved to Redlands, CA.  We next saw them at the F.O.T. in 1986 at Corpus Christi, TX.  We enjoyed one evening with the Sefcaks and Mr. and Mrs. John Wilson at the Pelican’s Wharf Restaurant.

Late in the 1980's, 1989 I believe, Connie and I were in Pasadena and were able to meet the Sefcaks at a restaurant in the Pasadena area for dinner.

We sort of lost contact for a few years.  In 2007, after Connie and I had moved to Kentucky, I had the desire to see if I could contact Gary.  I did an internet search and found two addresses and phone numbers.  One was in Texas and one in Kentucky.  I decided to try the Kentucky number and when I dialed it that familiar voice of Gary Sefcak came back at me.  That was in April and in August Connie and I drove the 100 miles to the Sefcak’s home for a visit.

We tried to get together at least once a year from then on.  Most of the time we went to their home as that was easier for Gary but they did come down our way once.  Our home is not handicap accessible so Gary was not able to come inside but was able to take a tour of the farm by automobile.  He and Karla stayed at a motel nearby and Connie and I were able to take them to dinner.  In 2013 we were able to have a reunion with one of our former co-workers, John R. Schroeder, at the Sefcak’s home.  Last Summer Connie and I stopped by the Sefcak’s for a visit on a return trip from visiting relatives in Ohio.  We spent the night with them and most of the next day and had a great visit.

That was to be our last visit with Gary in this life.  But, I’m very happy to have known Gary and to be a friend for well over 50 years.

 


07/23/15 12:47 PM #4    

Joyce Sefcak (Catherwood) (1959)

Gary was my one and only big brother. I remember once when I was a teen borrowing his car and putting a dent in it.  I was totally panicked and had to work up my nerve to tell him and offer to pay for repairs.  When he saw my distress, he smiled, tried to calm me down and said, it's OK and not to worry about it.  And it was never mentioned again.  That type of reaction was typical of Gary.   In his passing, he is leaving a legacy of true courage, patience and kindness.  He had a huge assignment on this earth which he fulfilled with the greatest of dignity and was a shining light and inspiration to all whose lives were touched by him.  How deeply his gentle, soothing presence will be missed. And a special tribute is in order to his dear wife and loving caregiver, Karla, whose extraordinary care contributed to his lengthy life which he enjoyed in spite of his limited mobility.


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