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Surowiecki, Benjamin M., Jr.

January 9, 2013 by Ellen Jarus Hanley

CHESHIRE – Benjamin M. Surowiecki, Jr., husband of Mary Surowiecki, died on Saturday, Dec. 22, 2012, at his home in Cheshire.

Born on Jan. 30, 1943, in Meriden, Ben was the son of the late Benjamin and Bernice Surowiecki. After graduating from Platt High School in 1961, he attended Worcester Polytechnic Institute, where he earned a bachelor of science in chemical engineering. He then worked for Kodak and Olin Chemical, before joining Loctite Corp. in the late 1960s. He worked for Loctite (which was acquired by Henkel in 1997) for 40 happy years in many different capacities, retiring in 2009, as a senior executive in manufacturing.

Ben’s great love was his family, including not just his wife Mary, whom he married in 1966, and his three boys, but also his many in-laws and cousins, and his mother-in-law, Catherine Marinan. The final three years of his life were brightened by the presence of his granddaughter, Elle, on whom he doted. Ben was legendary for his willingness to go to enormous lengths to help those around him. He was a gentle man. Ben also loved golf, and was a brilliant golfer, carrying a single-digit handicap into his late sixties. He was gifted with beautiful tempo, a smooth swing, and, especially as he got older, an excellent short game. He finished his career with four holes-in-one, and recently shot his age. He loved belonging to the Wallingford Country Club, which became his proverbial home away from home, and was especially proud when he won the senior club championship at Wallingford in 2011. Ben was one of the founders of the First Tee program at St. Martin de Porres Academy, working in conjunction with the Yale golf team to introduce the sport to students who had never played before. He also tutored at St. Martin’s and volunteered at St. Mary’s School and Church in Meriden for many years, in addition to serving as a coach for Cheshire Youth Baseball. He and his wife were parishioners at St. Mary’s for more than 15 years. Ben was lucky enough to have seen much of the world—his job took him to every continent except Africa, and he and Mary spent many happy days traveling with their close friends, Jackie and Louie Melendez. Ben had a special fondness for Venice, but, of all the places he visited, the one he probably loved best was Lake George, where he had vacationed ever since he was a boy.

In addition to Mary, he is survived by his three boys, David, James, and Timothy; his daughters-in-law, Christa Rimonneau and Meghan O’Rourke; his granddaughters, Elle and Liv; and his sister, Patty Walsh and her husband, Brady Walsh.

Services were held on Dec. 27 at St. Mary Church in Meriden, with a burial at Sacred Heart Cemetery, also in Meriden. In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to the Benjamin Surowiecki Scholarship Fund at St. Martin de Porres Academy, 208 Columbus Ave., New Haven, CT 06519.

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