GEORGE WACHA JR.
George Washington Wacha Jr., 88, of Georgiana, went home to be with the Lord, and the love of his life, on Friday, Aug. 13. He passed away peacefully in his home in the company of his loving family.
A Funeral service will held this afternoon in the chapel of Johnson Funeral Home with Bro. Randy Sexton officiating. Burial will follow in Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church Cemetery with Johnson Funeral Home directing.
He was preceded in death by his loving wife of 63 years, Patricia Ann (Benoit) Wacha, his parents, George Washington Wacha, Sr. and Agnes Frances (Montgomery) Wacha; two children, Dawn Marie Wacha and William Thomas “Tommy” Wacha; and his sister, Joanne Wacha Kelly.
Survivors include his children, George Washington Wacha, III and his wife Nona, Defuniak Springs, Fl; and Patricia Anne (Wacha) Gomillion and her husband Ralph, Greenville, AL; six grandchildren: Jessica Wacha Roeten (Brett) and Elizabeth Wacha Prater (Daniel), both of Greenville; Mitchell Wade, Forest Home; Anne-marie Taylor Wacha, Defuniak Springs, FL.; Nicole Marie Armstrong and Tyler James Gomillion, both of Greenville, AL; and one great grandson, Theron Joseph McGough, Greenville; two sisters-in-law, Ruth Ferreira and Sandra Morel, Fairhaven, MA; one brother-in-law, Robert Stowell, Fredricksburg, VA.; also numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
“Trapper” as he was fondly known, was born on May 21, 1933 in his grandmother, Mary Gavin Montgomery’s home in the West Englewood community of Teaneck, NJ.
He was and Eagle Scout and later served as Troopmaster and Board Chairman for Boy Scout Troop 169. After serving in the US Navy during the Korean War, Trapper married his wife and settled in Teaneck, NJ in “Frog Hollow” and became a career professional firefighter. He raised his family to love and serve the Lord on Spring Street, where he taught them, and countless other kids from the community the art of animal trapping and conservation.
Never without a “side business,” George owned a window washing business, then Trapper Ceramics Co., and he and his sons recovered and sold golf balls. He also worked part time for WJ Linn School Supplies. An accomplished artist and craftsman, he painted wildlife on canvas and sliced cedar, and manufactured animal jewelry.
He taught his children and their friends good work ethics, conservation, and most importantly, to love and serve the Lord.
His lifelong passion was trapping and the furtherance of trapping education throughout the nation. He served the National Trappers Association as General Organizer and Director-At-Large. He was a Lifetime Member of the NTA, and was inducted into the NTA Hall of Fame.
After retiring as a Firefighter Lieutenant in 1983 he moved his family to the Providence community of Georgiana, AL, and helped organize three rural fire departments: Shackleville, Starlington, and Providence-Mt. Pisgah Volunteer Fire Departments.
George also was active in the community, serving the Georgiana Kiwanis Club both as a member and former President; he was also a member of the Georgiana VFW Post.
His legacy lives on in the hearts and minds of the many hundreds of children he lovingly taught to trap over more than 65 years in both New Jersey and Alabama, whom he told, “Wildlife conservation means wise use. Trappers are conservationists.”