George Anthony Podenak, 89, went peacefully to the Lord on December 22, 2018 in the comfort of the home he built on Hayward Avenue in 1964, with his loving wife by his side.
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Born on August 6, 1929 in Norwich, George was the son of Anthony and Mary (Merlino) Podenak. He graduated from Norwich High School with the class of 1949. You could find George on the wrestling mat or the football field, as these were his two passions. He was also a team member of the Norwich Y-Giants, a semi pro football team. He proudly served in the United States Army from 1950-1952 and continued in the Army Reserves until 1954.
George married the love of his life, Joan Hool, on November 26, 1953 in Utica, NY. They recently celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary.
George was employed at the Norwich Pharmaceutical Company, where he retired in 1992, as the lead carpenter after 42 years of service. He had a love for cooking and was famous for his homemade blueberry pie, strawberry jam, and cucumber & tomato salads, fresh from his garden. He also enjoyed fishing, hunting and of course going to Turning Stone Casino with his wife, where together they played “Let-it-Ride” and Bingo.
George was a longtime, faithful member of St. Bartholomew’s Church.
In addition to his wife, he is survived by his three daughters, Sandy (David) Gill, of Georgia, Pam (John) Nesbitt, of Plymouth, and Kim (Paul) Prevost, of Clifton Park NY; grandchildren Shaun Podenak, of Florida, Craig (Toni) Podenak, of Oklahoma, Sarah (Jeff) Latham, of Texas, Katherine (Drew) Haskett, of California, Tiffany (Mike) Selhay, of Alaska, Maddison Prevost, Noah Prevost, & Tristan Prevost, all of Clifton Park, Collin (Alena) Nesbitt, of Texas; 10 great grandchildren; brother John Podenak, of Norwich, sisters Catherine Podenak, of Norwich and Mary DePalma, of California. He was preceded in death by his son Gary L. Podenak on January 24, 2006. He is also survived by his beloved cat, Lady.
Friends are invited to call on Thursday, December 27, at the Wilson Funeral Home from 4:00 p.m.to 6:00 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial for George will be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, December 28, 2018, at the Church of St. Bartholomew, where Rev. Ralph A. Bove, pastor, will officiate. Burial will take place in the spring at Mt. Hope Cemetery.
The family wishes to express its sincere appreciation to all of George’s caregivers over the last few months; Christina, Erica, Jamie and Niki. Thank you, Dr. John Cruz, he was proud to be your “oldest” patient. And many thanks to the Norwich Fire Department for their assistance for all of those late night calls.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Norwich Fire Department, 31, East Main Street, Norwich, NY 13815 or St. Jude Place, Children’s Research Hospital/ALSAC, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.