Joseph Garbowski of Sag Harbor, who was diagnosed with brain cancer 14 months ago, died on July 3 at the age of 70.
“He was a local local,” said his wife of 47 years, the former Audrey Miller. Mr. Garbowski died where he was born, on Aug. 21, 1942, in Southampton Hospital, the son of the former Anne Davorak and John E. Garbowski.
A graduate of Pierson High School, he afterward served four years in the Air Force, from 1961 to 1965. Even while serving he never went far from home, said his wife, having been stationed first at the old air force base in Montauk as an electrical engineer and later on Plum Island.
After leaving the military, he went to work as an engineer for Grumman in Sag Harbor, where the Bay Street Theatre now stands. In 1965 friends introduced him to his future wife, and the two became one the following year. Soon after, Mr. Garbowski left Grumman to work for the federal government in maintenance.
He was an expert fisherman, clammer, and crabber who loved everything about the water — “the fluke king,” his wife called him. He was a keen golfer as well, and was club champion several times at the Sag Harbor Golf Course.
The couple also liked to go bird-watching together. “We loved birding,” Mrs. Garbowski said. They kept “mental notes” of what they had seen, she said, rather than formal life lists.
In addition to his wife, Mr. Garbowski leaves two children, Joseph A. Garbowski, Jr. of Cambridge, Me., and Diane Krebs of Dover, Pa., and five grandchildren. He had one brother, Eugene Garbowski, who died some years ago.
Funeral services were held on Monday morning at the Yardley and Pino Funeral Home in Sag Harbor, followed by burial at St. Andrew’s Cemetery.
The family has suggested donations in his memory to the American Cancer Society, P.O. Box 22718, Oklahoma City, Okla. 73123, or the Sag Harbor Volunteer Ambulance Service, P.O. Box 2725, Sag Harbor 11963.