By Joshua Benton
Blade Staff Writer
Aloysius “Ollie” Szewczykowski, 87, a longtime leatherworker who loved playing and watching baseball, died Saturday at St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center. He was 87.
The cause of death was liver disease, family members said.
Mr. Szewczykowski was born and raised in Toledo’s old Polish neighborhood on the south side and left school early to work and help his family financially.
He worked at a series of jobs before being hired at the Textile Leather Co., where he worked for 45 years until his retirement in 1975. For most of that time, he was responsible for mixing leather dyes, his daughter Joanne said.
Throughout his life, Mr. Szewczykowski loved baseball, she said. He played for many years in the Old Timers Association, pitching in games against other local club teams.
And when he grew older, a lifelong devotion to the Detroit Tigers grew even more intense, as he would spend many nights watching their games on television.
“After he retired, he played a lot of solitaire and watched a lot of Tigers’ games,” his daughter said.
He loved to bowl, she said, and spent many days fishing on the Maumee River or Lake Erie with his wife, going after perch.
The couple continued fishing together until they were well into their 60s, she said.
Mr. Szewczykowski loved spending time with his children, grandchildren, and great-grand children, and had a strict role in the family household.
“He was always the one who sat us down and made us do our homework,” his daughter said. “Mom took care of the house, and he took care of the homework.”
Surviving are his wife, Virginia Mary Szewczykowski; a son, Gene Szewczykowski; two daughters, Bernadine Overly and Joanne Szewczykowski; a brother, Ted Szewczykowski; a sister, Cecelia Gzik; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
Arrangements are being handled by Sujkowski and Son Funeral Home, 3838 Airport Hwy., where the body will be from 2 to 9 p.m. tomorrow. Services will be held there Wednesday, followed by a Mass at Regina Coeli Church. The time of the service and Mass are pending.