A funeral service will be held Tuesday for Maurice E. “Sol” Garrett, Lackawannock Township. He passed away in his sleep at his family’s home Saturday morning, April 8, 2006. He was 85.

Maurice, who was known as Sol, was born July 24, 1920, in Sharon to the late Jay Gould Garrett and Pearl Idella Gettings Garrett, Pulaski.

During World War II, he served in the Army as a master mechanic. During his service, he participated with the GI Hot Shots that provided entertainment to the troops. He played the guitar and upright bass viola.

Upon discharge, he and his brothers, Gerry and Dale, played in a local polka band with other men from the Pulaski area for many years.

On Oct. 26, 1943, he married Mary Jane Vaughn and lived in Pulaski until 1956, when the family moved to their farm in Lackawannock Township. Mary Jane passed away Sept. 29, 2002.

He worked for the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 66. He was a member of their union for 58 years.

He served as the Mercer County representative to the Mercer County Building Trades for over 30 years. He also belonged to the union Retiree’s Club.

A Protestant by faith, he belonged to Pulaski Presbyterian Church.

He was a life member of Veterans of Foreign Wars James Stoner Post 6233, West Middlesex, where he served as commander and held other offices. He was a member of the post’s burial honor guard.

He belonged to the Penn-Ohio Music Association, which honored him last July for being the oldest active member.

He was a member of the Western Pennsylvania Firemen’s Association and the International Order of Odd Fellows, Lodge 347.

In 2001, he and his wife were named Citizens of the Year by the Lackawannock Township Civic League.

He was an honorary member of the Mercer County Vietnam Era Veterans Association and belonged to the National League of Families for Prisoners of War and Missing in Action.

He is survived by: three daughters and their spouses, Lilyan and Frank Gottuso, Baden, Pa.; Melanie and Tom Inman, with whom he resided; and Melinda Jane and David Lewis, all Mercer. He was most proud of his seven grandchildren, Nathaniel, Zachary, Matthew and Kelley Lewis, Amy Gottuso, and Sara and Rebecca Inman. Also surviving are a sister and brother-in-law, Shirley and Fred Lange, West Middlesex; a brother, Russell Garrett and his family, British Columbia, Canada; a sister-in-law, Carol Garrett, Mercer; and his wife’s sister and brother-in-law, Martha and Tom Houston, New Castle.

Besides his wife, he was preceded in death by his only son, Capt. Maurice E. Garrett Jr., who was killed during the Vietnam War on Oct. 22, 1971, in a helicopter crash. In July 1977, Maury’s name was officially placed on the missing-in-action list. They now have the answer to the question that the family has wanted for the last 34 years.

Also preceding him in death were his parents; three brothers, Gerald, Dalmer and Gene, who died during World War II in Italy; and two sisters, Yvonne Holsapfel and an infant sister.

Due to his love for music, the family requests memorials be given to the West Middlesex High School marching and concert bands, of which his granddaughters Kelley and Sara are members. He actively supported the band at their many functions and would like to further promote music education and performance in the school. Donations can be mailed to the bands in care of West Middlesex High School, 3591 Sharon Road, West Middlesex 16159.


Maurice E. “Sol,” 85, of Lackawannock Township.

Calling hours: 4 to 9 p.m. today (4-10-06) in SMITH FUNERAL HOME, 310 W. Neshannock Ave., New Wilmington.

Service: Funeral service at 11 a.m. Tuesday (4-11-06) in Lebanon Presbyterian Church, 2090 Mercer-West Middlesex Road, Lackawannock Township, with the Rev. David Lingle, interim pastor, and the Rev. Dr. Donald P. Wilson, former pastor of the church, co-officiating.

Interment: Pulaski Cemetery, with full military honors by Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6233, West Middlesex; and American Legion Post 432, Wheatland.

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