Donald E. Wasik, 89, of Somers, formerly of South Windsor, passed away on March 12, 2021, peacefully at home with family, as he wished.
Born Jan. 17, 1932, Don grew up in New Britain and until the pandemic, would meet monthly for breakfast with his New Britain High School friends. At a young age, one of his friends started calling him “Doc” and the nickname stuck. He started college in Conn., but the Korean War interrupted his studies. After enlisting and serving in the Air Force, he was thrilled to be accepted at the University of Notre Dame, graduating in 1957, cum laude with a BS in Commerce. His Notre Dame roommate Bob Orner would become his best friend for life. He met the love of his life Audrey on a blind date at the University of Conn., and told Bob he found a match for him, her identical twin sister, Anne. As he predicted, in 1959, the McMullen twins would wed the ND alum in a storybook double wedding ceremony in Moodus.
Don would go on to earn his Juris Doctor at UConn School of Law in 1960. After law school, he worked as an Administrative Assistant at the Conn. Judicial Dept.; as an Assistant Attorney General at the Dept. of Agriculture and Natural Resources; as an Associate Attorney at Howard Kohn Sprague and Fitzgerald; as the Town Attorney for South Windsor. In 1967 he returned to the AG’s office as an Assistant Attorney General representing the Labor Dept. and would stay with the AG’s office until he retired in 1992. The highlight of his career was in 1973, when he appeared before the United States Supreme Court on behalf of the State of Conn.
Don and Audrey lived in South Windsor from 1960 - 2007. Always civic-minded, Don became a charter member of both the Knights of Columbus Council #5779 and the South Windsor Lions Club, serving as the Lions’ president; coached CYO and Recreation League Basketball (his team remembers a required written test; no doubt this led to their winning season!); umpired Little League and drove for FISH. They moved to Somers in 2008, where he joined American Legion Post #101, served as president of the South Windsor Super 60’s Club, and drove for Meals on Wheels.
Don defied age, playing slow pitch softball for over 30 years, retiring his glove at age 62 (and his knee braces and his elbow brace and his Ace bandages - they called him “The Mummy”). He played Senior Basketball from ages 69-72 and bowled in the Labor Dept. League for 47 years. Along with crossword puzzles, one of Don’s favorite mental exercises was playing the word game Boggle, which he played at lunch with Labor Dept. colleagues who became close friends, the Boggle Bunch. Don was an ardent fan of Notre Dame sports, UConn Women’s Basketball and the St Louis Cardinals. After retirement, he enjoyed golf and earned hole-in-one bragging rights.
He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Audrey McMullen Wasik, and his five children, ten grandchildren, and one great-grandchild: Christopher (Susan) Wasik of Colo. and their children Sean, Brett, Erin (Nolan) Lee and their son Emmet; Cynthia (David) Gagne of Mass. and their children Daniel and Dylan; Maureen Wasik (Stephen Nystrup) of Conn. and their children Aaron Nystrup and Max Behrendt; Timothy (Gianina) Wasik of Colo. and their children Josie and Emma Lou; Michael (Christina) Wasik of Colo. and their children Addison and Dominik.
He is survived by his brother and sister-in-law Robert and Lorraine Wasik of Newington and many beloved nieces, nephews, and cousins. He is predeceased by his parents, Stephen S. Wasik Sr. and Evelyn (Barrett) Wasik Borriello of New Britain; his brother and sister-in-law Stephen S. Wasik Jr. and Jacqueline (Daley) Wasik of New Britain; Audrey’s parents, Raymond and Josephine (Depgen) McMullen of Moodus; his brother-in-law, James E. O’Brien Ph.D., M.D., of Wethersfield; his brother-in-law, Robert T. Orner, Esq. of Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
Don’s family and friends may remember him most for his ridiculously punny jokes and as his nieces and nephews will tell you, Uncle Doc gave the best ever hugs. (They also wonder if he tells his jokes, will St. Peter send him back?!) We miss you Dad. Be at peace.
All are welcome at a funeral mass to be held on March 24, 2021 at 10 a.m. at St. Margaret Mary Church, 80 Hayes Road, South Windsor, where Don and Audrey were parishioners for almost 50 years. A wake will not be held due to the pandemic. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Champ’s Place at Somers Congregational Church, 599 Main St., Somers, CT 06071.
Samsel & Carmon Funeral Home in South Windsor is caring for the arrangements. For online condolences, guest book and to view the Mass that will be web streamed, please go to www.carmonfuneralhome.com .