George Castrone

Obituary of George Castrone

Longtime Boulder resident George Castrone passed away Saturday, Oct. 19 at his Thornton home after a brief illness. He was 93, two weeks away from his 94th birthday. Mr. Castrone was born Nov. 1, 1925 in South Kortwright, New York, one of nine children born to Italian dairy farmers Vincenzo and Maria Castrone. He graduated from South Kortwright High School in 1943.

In 1944, eager to escape rural New York, he enlisted in the Navy as part of the post-World War II occupation forces. While in the Navy, Mr. Castrone “saw the world,” circumnavigating the globe twice, earning the status of Son of Neptune Shellback when he crossed the equator, and achieving the rank of Petty Officer. He was also a plank holder of the USS Toledo. He visited numerous seaports around the world, and often shared stories too risqué to tell in front of the children. He completed his tour of duty in 1948 but remained on reserve status, and was recalled to service during the Korean War.

In 1950 he met Pauline Benincasa in Kingston, New York, and after a six-month courtship they were married Nov. 5, 1950. Shortly afterward he went to work for IBM in Kingston. Legend has it that Mr. Castrone took a sack lunch and sat in the lobby of the new IBM plant, refusing to leave until they hired him. In 1964 he moved his family to Boulder, Colorado, to help open a new IBM plant there. He retired as a Project Manager in 1987 after thirty-three years with IBM. During his career he received numerous productivity, quality and achievement awards.

In Colorado, Mr. Castrone became an avid fisherman who loved the Rocky Mountains. He also became a lifelong fan of the Denver Broncos, the University of Colorado Buffaloes and the Colorado Rockies, while still maintaining a nostalgic love for the New York teams. Longtime season ticket holders, he and Pauline loved nothing better than joining friends for tailgating parties before CU football games. In retirement, they also traveled extensively, to the Grand Caymans, Hawaii, Mexico and Europe. The highlight of these travels was a journey back to the village in Italy where George’s father, Vincenzo, was born, and where the family farm still exists. There he met aunts, uncles, cousins and family he had never seen, and he reveled in finding his roots years before it became a popular thing to do.

George and Pauline celebrated 53 years of marriage before she passed away in 2004. During that time family was paramount in his life, with ever larger gatherings of children, their spouses, grandchildren and, eventually great-grandchildren. He is survived by three children, Jim Castrone of Placitas, NM; Linda Luttrell of Westminster, CO; and Patricia Tinney of Green Valley, AZ; grandchildren Toni Grinstead, Ellen Silva Castrone, Andrea Rose, Jennifer Young, Kristen Neff, and Laura Luttrell; 10 great-grandchildren and two sisters, Annette Ourakian and Dolores Doyle of New York.

Services will be held on Tuesday, October 29th. There will be a brief visitation from 11:30am till noon followed by a church service at Harvey Park Christian Church, 3401 S. Lowell Blvd, Denver CO 80236

Mr. Castrone will be interred at Fort Logan National Cemetery, 3698 S. Sheridan Blvd, Denver CO 80235 at 1pm. Please arrive no more than 5 minutes prior to service time at Ft. Logan and follow signs for staging area A. You will line up along the curb to follow the procession to the Committal Shelter for his military honors ceremony.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Honor Flight Network (www.honorflight.org), which transports veterans to Washington, D.C., to visit their war memorials.

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