This obituary originally appeared on Memorial Funeral Home.

It is with great sadness that the family of Gregorio Barandiaran announces his passing after a brief illness, on Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at the age of 96. Gregorio will be lovingly remembered by his wife of 62 years, Vicenta, and his three sons and their wives; Jose and Georgette, Gregory and Antoinette, and Paul and Deborah. Gregorio will also be fondly remembered by his three grandchildren: Gabrielle, Thomas, and Sabrina.Dad always had interesting stories to tell. Born in Irun, Pais Vasco, Spain in 1923, Gregorio joined the Spanish Navy at the age of 18, serving 4 years. He recalled, during World War II, how his vessel was being tracked by German U-boats during the height of the North Atlantic U-boat attacks. He also recalled seeing the Germans visit his hometown after the fall of France. At the age of 24, he traveled to the United States, settling in the New York City area. Although not yet a citizen, Dad was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1951. Immigration caught up with Dad at Fort Hood, Texas, but President Eisenhower naturalized any active military personnel. Dad saw service as a Corporal during the Korean War, serving in the 45th Infantry Division/ Artillery. He was honorably discharged in 1953. After completing his service and returning to the States, he met his beautiful wife, Vicenta, in Cleveland and got married in 1958. To his last days, Dad always said that he had won the lottery when he married his wife.A Mass of Christian burial will be held on Monday December 7, 2020 at 9:00 am, at St Lucy’s Church, 909 West Main Road in Middletown. Burial will follow in St. Columba Cemetery, Brown’s Lane in Middletown.Due to the current restrictions on gatherings due to COVID19, seating at church is limited and the burial will be private.

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