Clement V PlaskiewiczNovember 18, 1923 ~ March 20, 2017 (age 93)
Clement V. Plaskiewicz, 93, passed away Monday March 20th in Waterbury Hospital after a brief illness. He was born in Scranton, PA on Nov. 18th, 1923, to Rose & Alexander Plaskiewicz & lived most of his life in Torrington. In Feb. 1943, while stationed in England as a Flight Officer & Bombardier, his plane crashed in exceptionally foggy weather. Clem was 1 of 4 survivors. The original plane he was supposed to be on with all his crew that he trained, also crashed, with no survivors. He was awarded the Purple Heart & discharged in Nov. 1945.
In 1950, he married his hometown sweetheart the former Rose Galgano & they moved to Tulsa OK where he’d gotten a job for American Airlines. They returned to Torrington 2 years later & Clem was employed by Pratt & Whitney, then took over Galgano Appliances for several years. Later he worked for Ducci Appliance, Dick Cooper Appliance, & after retirement he took a part time job at Wolcott Hall, spending the rest of his time perfecting his craft of hand-tooled leather work for which he won Best in Show Ribbons at area craft fairs. He learned his craft originally, as rehab therapy during his months in the English hospital after the plane crash. He also loved creating, building & fixing things in his basement workshop & later taught his young grandchildren to say ‘Papa can fix anything except a broken heart & the crack of dawn’. Which is only partly true, because he always could fix a broken heart. He was also a member of the Knights of Columbus & the Torrington Elks Club.
He loved traveling, taking a cherished, rare vacation with just his wife & 2 of their friends to Hawaii for their 25th anniversary. But the rest of the trips were with his wife & daughters, on daytrips, weekend trips & longer, including a family trip to Hawaii, always exploring someplace new & having endless patience doing whatever his wife & girls wanted to do. Clem was the best kind of husband & father, always putting his family first & never complaining. Healthy all his life until 90, he then accepted a feeding tube with grace. He had a few illnesses & falls since then, from which he always managed to recover, & responded to Drs’ & nurses’ questions of ‘how do you feel’ with, ‘Im OK’ so as not to complain. Or, in jokester mode, his other response would be, ‘with my hands.’ King of the Dad Jokes, his family would roll their eyes knowing what was coming, but strangers who hadn’t heard them yet, loved them. His family will greatly miss those jokes, playing Wii bowling & watching his favorite Game Show Channel with him, as well as his constant love & support. But they know he’ll always be watching out for them, while on the other side now with his friends who passed before him, finally able to have a vodka martini (‘dry, 3 olives, no garbage’) & a steak dinner again.
In addition to his wife of 66 years, Rose, he leaves 3 loving daughters: Gail Plaskiewicz of Torrington, Kathie Plaskiewicz of Canton, Cheryl Mendez of Litchfield, grandchildren Isabella & Alex Mendez, sister Monica Delia, brother Edward Plaskiewicz, niece Jolene Clark, & nephews Darren Galgano, Gary Plaskiewicz & David Plaskiewicz. Funeral services will be announced at a later date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to https://www.gofundme.com/ww2heroes, a non-profit run by an amazing CA teen traveling the US to interview every remaining WWII Vet. Sadly, he contacted Clem’s daughter Kathie the very morning Clem passed, to interview him, but it’s not too late to help this young man gather the stories of our other WWII Vets.
A Memorial Mass will be held Saturday May 20th at 10:30 AM at Saint Peter's Church in Torrington.