Jacksonville, FL — George Charles DeSalvo, lovingly known as "Pal", age 89, passed away peacefully, with loved ones holding him in their thoughts and prayers, on Wednesday April 4, 2018, at the Community Hospice Earl B. Hadlow Center for Caring.
George was born on March 22, 1929 in Millsboro, PA, the son of George and Pauline (Fantone) DeSalvo. He had fond memories of his childhood along the Monongahela River in West Brownsville Pennsylvania, during the hard times of the Great Depression, where he went to work at the age of 16 for the Pennsylvania Railroad. He met the love of his life, Dolores “Dokey” Beal, across the candy counter at Murphy’s 5&10 in Brownsville, PA and went on to cherish her through 60 years of marriage. George bravely served his country during the Korean War and unsuspectingly became a victim of the U.S. Nuclear Testing Program. He and his fellow soldiers were taken to the Nevada Test Site, where they were used as experimental test subjects in the Army’s Top Secret Atomic Bomb testing on April 25, 1953. The impact and radiation effects of experiencing an atomic bomb from 2 miles away began to destroy his health immediately, leaving him to suffer greatly over his lifetime. Though this event changed his life profoundly, his perseverance and dedication to hard work would ultimately lead him to Lima, OH, where he became known for his incredible management skills and innovative ideas at the Ford Motor Company Lima Engine Plant. George retired from Ford as a respected Superintendent after 32 years and moved to Bayonet Point, FL where he and Dokey spent many years enjoying family and friends, dining out, and planning Casino visits. They eventually moved to Loganville, Georgia.
Pal loved to entertain others by singing and telling his incredible life stories. He especially loved playing with his grandchildren and watching them grow up. Some of his hobbies were bowling, gardening, and working side by side with Dokey on home remodeling projects. He was a member of the St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Bayonet Point, FL and together with his wife enjoyed many years as a member of the VFW, the Elks, the American Legion, the Eagles, and the Moose Lodge. He was a proud member of the National Association of Atomic Veterans (NAAV) and the Disabled American Veterans (DAV).
Pal lost his beloved wife, Dokey, to cancer in 2015.
He is also preceded in death by his loving parents and siblings: Roger, Joseph, Ronald, Dolores and Larry.
Left to cherish his memory are his children: Diane E. Wise and husband Keith of Grayson, GA, David G. DeSalvo of New Richmond, OH, and Carol D. Smith and husband Kevin of Fleming Island, FL. Also fondly remembering their “Pappy” are his grandchildren: Jessica Kennedy and husband Clayton, Brittany and Shelbi DeSalvo, Sydney, Courtney and McKenzey Smith, and great-grandchild William Asher Kennedy. He is also survived by his dear sisters-in-law, Connie DeSalvo, Nancy DeSalvo and Nancy DeSalvo Roberts, and was loved by all of his family and friends.
Friends will be received in the NOVAK FUNERAL HOME, 515 Front Street, Brownsville, PA on Saturday, August 11, 2018 at 5:00 PM for a Memorial service followed by a Blessing service with Rev. Father Timothy Kruthaupt.
Inurnment will follow at LaFayette Memorial Park, Brier Hill, PA.
Military honors will be accorded by American Legion posts 295, 940, 838 and 275.
To send flowers to George's family, please visit our floral section.