Stephen M Lucas Sr. was born December 2, 1923 in Erie, Pennsylvania. Steve was a Depression Era child. He was the youngest of 8 children and thus got a lot of “hand me downs” from his 5 older brothers and 2 sisters. His mother sent him off to St. Michaels Grade School early in the morning so he could serve at 7 AM Mass. He liked to remind us of his freezing walk in winter.
He was attending Penn State University when Pearl Harbor was attacked. In 1943, as part of the Greatest Generation, he joined the Army Signal Corps and was assigned to Signal Intelligence School at the University of Minnesota. It was there that he met and married Gloria Swartout, the love of his life. While in the Army he served in Egypt, India and behind enemy lines in China.
When the war ended he returned home and began a highly successful sales career with the American Sterilizer Co., a major supplier of hospital equipment. He had both national and, since he spoke five languages, international sales territories.
Steve, who passed on at the age of 95, was predeceased in death by his wife of 68 years, Gloria, who he lovingly and devotedly cared for during her long struggle with Alzheimer’s disease, and by his son, Thomas Mark who died in a tragic automobile accident at age 16. Steve was a devoted husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather. He thoroughly enjoyed cooking, golf and family gatherings.
He is survived by Stephen Lucas, Jr (Sheri), Deborah Lehrer (Richard), Eileen Lucas, Natalie Dzuricky (Bill) and Peter Lucas (Amy) and a niece, Nancy Arndt.
“Papa” was always interested in mentoring his grandchildren and great grandchildren as they grow into special people. He recited a Croatian rhyme to tickle the little ones. He also took great pleasure leading the older children in a Croatian Christmas blessing. Thank you Papa for all you have shared with us and may God’s peace be with you.
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