Gene, as he was affectionately called for most of his life, passed peacefully in his sleep while in the arms of his beloved wife, Kathryn (Zgragen) of 63 years, with brother Jim holding his hand.
Gene and Kathryn (Katie) raised daughter Kathy, known by her artist name, Hozhoni, who produced three grandchildren, sons, Eric and Robbie, and daughter Kelly Watson, and great-grandson Jaylen.
Gene was preceded in death by his father John, mother Pauline, brothers Joseph (WWII), George, Carmen, Tony and his two youngest sisters, Angie Filice and Virginia Fontana. He is survived by three sisters, Julia Rae (San Jose), Yolanda Thompson (Salinas), Barbara Boyle (Hayward) and brother Jim (San Dimas) and brother-in-law, Giulio Filice (Hollister) along with many nieces and nephews and relatives in Italy and Argentina.
An avid golfer, Gene won the club championship several times while a member of Bolado Park and Ridgemark Country Clubs. He also was a member of the Gavalan Community College Golf Team while in his late 60’s. Television’s CNN filmed Gene at San Juan Oaks during competition and tagged him:” College’s oldest golfer.”
He retired from a career in Sales and Engineering and was an outstanding track and field athlete at Hollister High and San Benito JC; a remarkable wood carver and artist, who received several collegiate scholarships, declined offers to be always with his beloved wife Katie. He was also an outstanding outdoorsman-hunter who taught family his skills. He was a tenor soloist for countless events and services.
He served four years with the US Air Force during the Korean War. He was the sixth child of eleven children, and continued to work and live in Hollister. He was one day shy of his 84th birthday.
His memory will be honored with a mass at Sacred Heart Church, 680 College Street, Hollister, on Monday, July 16, 2012, at 10:00 A.M.
Visit: www.grunnagle.com for condolences.