OTEGO – George Rudolph Dolezel, 67, a stonemason, SUNY Delhi faculty member, Otego Town Board member, past president of the Sixth Ward Athletic Club, and exalted ruler of the Oneonta Elks, passed away Saturday, Aug. 13, 2016, at home, with his beloved family by his side.
George was born on May 1, 1949, in Sidney, the son of George Charles (Kovar) Dolezel and Virginia (Mac Arthur) Dolezel.
He graduated from Unatego High School in 1967. During his formative years, George worked hard as a mason’s apprentice under the mentorship of the one and only “Uncle Jerry” Bouton. While George did not recognize his talent for masonry at that time, he would go on to become the most accomplished mason in the area.
George served in the Army in 1970-72. Then, in 1975, he opened Dole Contracting and utilized his gifts for both plumbing and masonry to support his family and fund his own college education, receiving a bachelor’s in elementary education from SUNY Oneonta in 1979.
Upon receiving his college degree, George taught high school biology and earth science at Unatego Central School from 1980 to 1982.
Recognizing his need to be his own boss, he returned to the trade he loved for 24 more years, when his knees began to fail and he finally put down his trowel.
He then began to share his knowledge with the young, aspiring masons at SUNY Delhi as a member of the carpentry faculty, an experience which would move him deeply and change his perspective forever. He taught at Delhi for 10 years, making lifelong friends.
His civic service included membership in the Otego Fire Department, Otego Town Board, Oneonta American Legion Post 259 and, most recently, Oneonta Elks Club BPOE 1312 as exalted ruler. He was treasurer, then president, of the Sixth Ward Athletic Club.
He is survived by his wife, Lisa Lynn (Nowhitney) Dolezel. Also surviving are Marilyn (Stevens) Dolezel with sons Mat (Anne) Dolezel, Luke Dolezel and Nathan Dolezel, and Leslie (McLaud) Dolezel and son Daniel (Laurie) Dolezel.
George was predeceased by a daughter,Virginia (Ginny) Dolezel, in 2011. Surviving Ginny are five of George’s grandchildren; Skyler, Jacob, Jade, Daniel and Logan Desersa. George is further survived by his three siblings; Douglas (Susan) Dolezel, Dwight (Janet) Dolezel, Anita (Thomas) Sears and several nieces and nephews.
George had intellect, a compassionate soul, a passion for living life to the fullest, a quick, dry wit and he never, ever, forgot anyone’s birthday. He will be missed beyond measure.
A celebration of life will be 4-8 p.m. Sept. 2 at Oneonta Elks. A formal Lodge of Sorrows Service will be at 6 p.m. Bring one of George’s favorite dishes to share with our endless family and let us raise a glass at “Ye ole’ Mahogany Ridge” to a life well lived. Bring a photo or share a verbal memory of our beloved George.
Donations or acts of service may be made in George’s name to the organizations mentioned above, whom George deemed worthy, inclusive of SUNY Delhi. George would want you to remember him with a smile, a laugh and something cold in your hand, so we will remind you of some of his favorite quotes: “Quit chasing the puppy”, “There’s something the matter with you Lis”, “It never rains in the big tree”, “Don’t dump the ice”, “220/221 what difference does it make”, “there is really nothing to it”, “I am technosabe”, “you can’t get there from here”….
On line expressions of sympathy may be sent to, www.lhpfuneralhome.com
Arrangements are by Lewis, Hurley & Pietrobono Funeral Home, 51 Dietz St, Oneonta.