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December 31, 1921 ~ September 28, 2023 (age 101) 101 Years Old
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Eugene G. Fitzmaier, 101, of Route 30, passed away Thursday morning, September 28, 2023, at Imperial Healthcare Rehabilitation in Neptune Township, NJ.
Born on December 31, 1921 in New York City, he was the son of the late George F. and Elfriede S. (Keller) Fitzmaier. Eugene enlisted in the United States Navy in 1939 and served throughout World War II in the Pacific. He was aboard the USS Portland, a heavy cruiser escorting an aircraft carrier when Pearl Harbor was attacked on December 7, 1941. Eugene participated in some of the most historic and significant naval conflicts of the war, including the battles at Coral Sea, Midway, Guadalcanal, and Leyte Gulf. Eugene also served throughout the Korean War, eventually retiring in 1959. He loved the Navy, and was very proud of his time in the service.
As a youth in the 1920s and 1930s, Gene’s family regularly visited the Indian Lake area. It became his dream to live there and he moved his young family to Sabael in 1961, where he spent the rest of his life in the house that he built. He loved the Adirondack Mountains, the fresh air, the people and the way of life. He took great pride in being a resident of Sabael and Indian Lake.
Gene worked in the plumbing and heating business, first for Turner Electric and then North Country Utilities, before breaking out on his own as Gene’s Plumbing and Heating. He continued to work well past “normal” retirement age, opening, and closing seasonal camps and helping many neighbors who may have needed a hand. He was fiercely independent and cut and split his own firewood to feed his wood fired boiler well into his 90’s.
Gene loved to read and keep up with current world events. He enjoyed working his vegetable garden and assisting his wife Kumeyo, with canning, baking, and cooking, especially after she lost her eyesight. He also loved his dogs. He had taken in numerous dogs over the years, either adopting from a shelter or taking on older dogs that friends and neighbors could no longer look after.
He was predeceased by his parents and his wife Kumeyo, the love of his life, who died on April 4, 2010.
Survivors include his sons: George (Gayle) Fitzmaier of Ocean, NJ and Bruce (Judy) Fitzmaier of Erial, NJ; grandchildren: Michael Fitzmaier, Stephen Fitzmaier, Thomas Shupe, Robert Fitzmaier, Justin Fitzmaier, Katie Bullock; and nine great grandchildren.
Friends may call from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, October 7, 2023, at Miller Funeral Home, 6357 State Route 30, Indian Lake.
Funeral services will immediately follow the visitation.
Burial will be in Cedar River Cemetery, Indian Lake.
In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made to the North Country SPCA, 7700 State Hwy 9N, Elizabethtown, NY 12932, www.ncspca.org/help/donations.