Bernard Patrick Mickaliger Sr., known as Ben, passed away July 23, 2013, in Sun City, Fla. He was 88 years old.
He was born in Riverhead Feb. 17, 1925, to Mary (Balser) and Martin Mickaliger and siblings Louis, Edward, John, Charles, Alex, Frank (who died at infancy), Martin, Marion, George and Stanley.
Ben attended Riverhead High School until joining the Navy in 1943 as an electrician on an LCT (landing craft transport) in the South Pacific during World War II. Upon his discharge in 1946, he returned home to Riverhead, where he worked as a groundskeeper at Grangebel Park while studying for his electrician’s license. Once he obtained the license, Ben worked for LILCO for 33 years and was a member of the Riverhead Fire Department and ex-captain of the Redbirds. He retired in 1983 and moved to Apollo Beach, Fla., with his wife, Pat.
Among his many accomplishments, he was most proud of his military service, the house he built himself on Ostrander Avenue back in the early ’50s and his family, both immediate and extended. While in Florida, three generations of children benefited from “Mr. Ben’s” wit, humor and kindness. Mr. Ben would fix anybody’s broken bicycle or toy without question. They just had to listen to one of his stories — stories that taught a lesson. Ben would never say no to anyone who asked him to help, regardless of the job.
He is survived by his loving wife of 64 years, Pat; children, Terri Mickaliger, Mike (Bernie) Mickaliger and Chrissy Lessard; grandchildren, Rachal Willie and Dr. Mitchell Mickaliger; and great-grandchild, Kaia. He is also survived by brothers Ed Mickaliger and Stanley (Shine) Mickaliger.
Ben’s ashes will be brought home by his children in August and a memorial celebration will be planned for a later date, to be determined.
This is a paid notice.