A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated Friday for Richard “Dick” G. Bodnar of Brookfield Township. He passed away at 8:35 p.m. Monday (9-30-13) in his residence. He was 79.
Mr. Bodnar was born Jan. 21, 1934, in Burgettstown, Washington County, one of seven children born to Frank H. and Mildred Dobroski Bodnar.
Richard was born and raised in Burgettstown and graduated from Burgettstown Union High School, where he was a standout baseball player.
He studied drafting and worked as an engineering draftsman for 47 years at several local companies including Sharon’s Fessler Machine Co.; Youngstown Foundry; Wean United, in its Boardman and Warren offices; and at Glowe-Smith Industries Inc., also Warren.
He was a member of St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Community, St. Bernadette’s Church, Masury.
Richard served in Germany with the Army and achieved the rank of sergeant. While serving in Germany, he played soccer for the Army team. As a standout soccer player, both he and his brother were later recruited by the German soccer club to play for its team.
He played baseball in the 1950s and ’60s for the Farrell Pirates, Hickory Drive-in and Warren’s Westinghouse team; he later played in the oldtimers league in the 1980s.
In 1991, Richard was inducted into the Penn-Ohio Oldtimers Baseball Association Hall of Fame.
His greatest passion was baseball and helping develop youth baseball. He was instrumental in the development of several Brookfield baseball leagues including Brookfield Little League, Hot Stove League and Babe Ruth League, serving as a manager, coach and umpire. He was commissioner of the Babe Ruth League in Brookfield from 1984 to 1988 and coached in the Youngstown B baseball league with Murphy Construction and Fabulous Goldstein’s.
His wife, the former Joan D. McDade, whom he married June 13, 1959, survives at home.
He also leaves his son, Mark R. Bodnar and his wife Alicia, Jupiter, Fla.; two grandchildren, Taylor Bodnar, Tucson, Ariz.; and Eric Bodnar, a student at Denison University, Granville, Ohio; a sister, Anna Mae Sweder, Burgettstown; three brothers, his twin, Rudy Bodnar and his wife Judy, Brookfield; Bob Bodnar and his wife Pat, Cincinnati; and Jerry Bodnar and his wife Gert, Northampton, N.J.; and several nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; a brother, Henry “Hank” Bodnar; and a sister, Evelyn Bodnar.
In lieu of flowers, his family has suggested memorial contributions being made in his memory go to St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Community Building Fund, 4453 Warren-Sharon Road, Vienna, OH 44473.
Richard “Dick” G., 79, Brookfield Township.
Calling hours: 4 to 7 p.m. today (10-3-13) and 9:30 to 10 a.m. Friday (10-4-13) in J. BRADLEY McGONIGLE FUNERAL HOME and CREMATORY Inc., 1090 E. State St., Sharon. Friends may e-mail condolences by visiting www.McGonigleFuneralHomeandCrematory.com
Service: Mass of Christian burial at 10:30 a.m. Friday in St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Community, St. Bernadette’s Church, Masury, with the Rev. Frank Zanni, pastor, as celebrant.
Interment: Hillcrest Memorial Park, Hermitage, with full military honors by the Honor Guard of American Legion Post 432, Wheatland; and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6233, West Middlesex.