SALEM, Ohio – Gary Allen Paxson, age 82, passed away peacefully on Thursday morning, December 14, 2017 at the Salem Regional Medical Center following a heroic battle with congestive heart failure.
He was born December 4, 1935, in Salem, the eldest child of the late Chester “Al” and Margaret (DeWan) Paxson.
Gary grew up in Salem and graduated with the Salem High School Class of 1954. He was the first in his family to attend college, graduating from Fenn College (nka Cleveland State) with a degree in Electrical Engineering. He was an avid swimmer in both high school and college (and continued his love of swimming at the Salem Community Center until 2015).
On November 28, 1958, he married his life-long love, Karen (Sneddon) Paxson, also from Salem.
Following graduation from college, he was hired by General Dynamics in San Diego, California, where he worked from 1961 until 1972, at which time he returned to Ohio to be closer to family. He worked for Firestone Tire & Rubber in Akron until his retirement, then relocated with Karen back to Salem.
He was an avid golfer at Torrey Pines (San Diego), Firestone Country Club (Akron), Shady Hollow Country Club (Canton) and Salem Golf Club. He also enjoyed bowling on several leagues, winning state tournaments on several occasions. In his retirement, he also enjoyed visiting Las Vegas several times a year.
His wife, Karen preceded him in death on April 5, 2014, after celebrating 56 years of marriage.
He is survived by his brother, Neil (Ila) Paxson, of Salem; sister, Judith (Jerry) Evelith of Green, Ohio; daughter, Debra Paxson of Salem; son, Allen (Dawn) Paxson and three grandchildren, Alyssa (Andrew) Combs, Nicolas Paxson and Amanda Paxson, all of Cincinnati, Ohio.
In addition to his parents and wife, he was preceded in death by his sister, Gayle (Bill) Snyder.
Calling hours will be held on Monday, December 18, 2017, from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. at the Emmanuel Lutheran Church, 291 South Broadway Avenue, Salem, Ohio.
A service will be held at 1:00 p.m. at the church on Monday, December 18, with Reverend Alan Smearsoll officiating.
A private burial will be held later at the convenience of the family.
Arrangements are being handled by Stark Memorial Funeral Home. Condolences may be sent online at www.starkmemorial.com.
A television tribute will air Monday, December 18 at the following approximate times:
6:41 a.m. WYTV and 8:41 a.m. MyYTV and 9:58 a.m. on FOX plus two additional spots throughout the day.