Alert “06880” reader John Karrel writes:
“Ernie G”‘s eldest daughter, Michele Convertito, says, “He could always make you laugh.”
Until October 3, when he died at age 65. The Fairfield native was a truck driver for over 30 years.
I serve a monthly lunch at the Gillespie Center. No person there could brighten my day like Ernie G. After his family — notably his daughters Michele, Melissa and Maria — no passion was more important for him than his Yankees.
For years, he and I traded barbs about his Yanks and my Red Sox. Neither of us would win. There was always a twinkle in his eye.
Last time I saw him, some weeks ago, we had both mellowed. We complimented each other on our teams: my Sox headed for the post-seasons, his Yankees seeing a bright future with a host of young players.
Some day, when the 2 teams meet in the playoffs and Gary Sanchez’s walk-off home run propels the Yanks into the World Series, I will be sad. Then I’ll think of Ernie G’s beaming face, and I’ll smile.
And if his beloved Yanks do lose, Ernie G will still have been “one of the greatest men I have ever known,” in daughter Michele’s words.
That’s not bad.
(For Ernie Gazdik’s full obituary, click here. Donations in his name may be made to the Gillespie Center, 45 Jesup Road, Westport, CT 06880.)