SPRINGFIELD-Eugene “Sonny” Baldyga died peacefully after a long illness Sunday evening, January 6, 2019 in Mercy Medical Center. Born January 28, 1933, in Three Rivers, MA, Gene attended St. Peter and Paul’s school and graduated from Palmer High School in 1951. Throughout high school he excelled at baseball and his gift for the game would lead him to the minor leagues for several years before volunteering for the United States’ Air Force. During his time in the service, Gene used his other talents to paint decorative images on the helicopters which he helped operate. While on leave from the Air Force, he met the love of his life, Jean, and married her shortly after returning from his service. He worked for Kaman Aircraft, and later, Monsanto Research and Development, where he helped invent processes to manufacture plastic soda bottles for which he holds a patent in his name. He was a founding member of St. Catherine of Siena church from its inception. Eugene and Jean had two children, whom Gene taught how to ride a bicycle, drive a car, and instilled a love for the Boston Red Sox, despite the many years of heartbreak. He was a very creative man who enjoyed helping his kids with their school projects or anything else that needed to be built or assembled. He eventually settled into retirement with his wife of 61 years. He spent his days watching the Red Sox, the Patriots, the Game Show Network and losing to his wife in Gin Rummy. He is survived by his wife Jean who cared for him throughout his life until his last days. In addition to his wife, he is survived by his daughter, Doreen Mondry-Bylicki and her husband Brian; his son Michael Baldyga; his grandsons, Andrew Mondry and Matthew Mondry and his wife Caitlin; and many extended family members and friends. He is sadly predeceased by his son-in-law, Paul Mondry. His silent wisdom will be missed and he will forever be loved. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to a charity of one’s choice. Visiting hours for Eugene will be held Thursday, January 10, 2019, from 9am-11am at Sampson’s Chapel of the Acres, 21 Tinkham Rd, Springfield, MA 01129. A liturgy of Christian Burial will be held in St. Catherine of Siena, 1023 Parker St, Springfield, MA 01129, at 11:30am. Rites of committal and internment will follow in Hillcrest Park Cemetery.
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