Proud patriot and devoted friend to many, Gary Lee Sorgea, 72, of St. Libory, Ill., entered into eternity on August 21, 2020, at Jefferson Barracks Hospice.
He was born on the 4th of July 1948, the youngest of five children to August and Gwendolyn (Gaw) Sorgea. Raised in Harford, Il, Gary graduated from EAWR (‘67).
He served in the U.S. Navy from June 1967 to June 1970, trained as a Damage Controlman, attended naval fire school in Pennsylvania, and took counterinsurgency training in Norfolk, Va. He was sent to Qui Nhon, Vietnam, where he served 3 tours (28 months) as a combat “brown water” sailor.
After service, he returned to Wood River, working at National Marine Service for 15 years; after which he served as maintenance supervisor for several prestigious properties; Union Market in downtown St. Louis, Clayton on the Park, and was the first maintenance director at the Casino Queen.
Dedicated to his community, he served 10 years as a “Paid-on-Call” firefighter for the City of Wood River; coached many youth soccer teams; was member of First Christian Church of Wood River; and was a past commander for American Legion post 204 (Wood River). Gary also served as a member of the Patriot Guard for several years.
He is survived by his wife of 18 years Jeanne (Crain) Sorgea of St. Libory, IL; Children and Stepchildren; Todd (Tracey Hokenson) Sorgea of Wood River; Tiffany Davis of East Alton; John Higgerson of Milstadt; Regina Mueller also of Milstadt. 9 Grandchildren and Step-Grandchildren; Donavin, Dylan, & Dawson Klunk, Eeriell and Blake Sorgea; Jeremy Spear and Grace Higgerson; and 2 foster grandchildren he loved very much; a Great-Grandson Elliot James Klunk; 2 Sisters-in-Law, Carol Sorgea of California and Nancy Sorgea of Brighton, IL; multiple nieces nephews and their spouses and children.
He was preceded in death by his parents; sister Dona and husband, Jim Thomas; brothers David, Augie, and Frank; and infant daughter Gwendolyn “Wendy.”
In accordance with his wishes, cremation rites will be accorded. Private family interment at Jefferson Barracks Cemetery will be at a later date.
Per the family’s request, memorials may be made to the Gary Sinise Foundation online.