HERMITAGE, Pennsylvania – Leo J. Sham, a resident of St. John XXIII Home in Hermitage, passed away at 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, January 10, 2018, in Jameson Hospital, of complications from surgery. He was 89.
Mr. Sham was born June 30, 1928, in Sharon, a son of John and Pauline (Bernard) Shamodosky.
A lifelong area resident, he attended the former St. Ann Parochial Grade School in Farrell and was a 1946 graduate of Sharon High School where he was a standout basketball player.
Leo had a successful career in life insurance sales and retired as Vice President of sales for Protected Home Mutual Life Insurance Company in Sharon.
He was a longtime active member of St. Joseph Church in Sharon.
Having enjoyed sports throughout his life, Leo played for the Diamond Café traveling fast pitch softball team during the 1950’s in the Independent league and for the Westinghouse team where he was employed before entering the life insurance industry. He also coached the Protected Life basketball team during the Hoyle tournament in the early 1970’s and was a fan of Sharon High School sports, the San Francisco Giants and the NFL. More recently, he enjoyed golfing, bowling and horse racing. Leo was also a professional musician and earlier in his life, had the honor of playing with Guy Lombardo.
Surviving is his wife of 68 years, the former Marilyn Rose Kelly, whom he married May 28, 1949 and a resident of St. John XXIII Home; three children, William L. Sham and his wife, Jane of Sharon, Vickie L. O’Hara, also of Sharon and Kelly M. Rudge and her husband, Frank of Hermitage; six grandchildren, Ashley Sham, Lee Sham and his fiancée, Kamala Black, Morgan and Jared Rudge, Neal O’Hara and Marilyn Evans and her husband, Greg and two great-grandchildren.
Leo was preceded in death by his parents, two sisters and a brother.
The family suggests memorial contributions be made to St. John XXIII Home, 2250 Shenango Valley Freeway, Hermitage, Pennsylvania 16148.
Calling hours will be from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, January 14, 2018, in J. Bradley McGonigle Funeral Home and Crematory, Inc., 1090 East State Street, Sharon.
Mass of Christian burial will be 11:00 a.m. on Monday, January 15, 2018, in the Roncalli Center of St. John XXIII Home, with Rev. Thomas Whitman, pastor of St. Joseph Church, as celebrant.
Interment will be at St. Rose Cemetery in Hermitage.
A television tribute will air Monday, January 15 at the following approximate times:
12:25 p.m. WKBN, 6:58 p.m. on MyYTV and 10:37 p.m. FOX plus two additional spots throughout the day.