WESTFIELD—Steven A. Hartman, 67, beloved husband, father and United States Marine Corps Vietnam Veteran, passed away unexpectedly on February 29, 2020. He had been steadily and repeatedly kicking stage 2 colorectal cancer’s butt for the better part of a year—and was winning! Dad was born on August 3, 1952 to the late Christopher J. Hartman and Alice E. (Archibald) Bennett in Honesdale, PA—under a rock and a grey cloud, as he liked to tell it. He left Honesdale at the age of 12 and moved first to New Hampshire and then to Westfield. In 1969, Dad left home to join the Marines. Not content to serve stateside during the war, Dad applied for and received orders to ship out to Vietnam, where he was stationed from 1970-1971. He spent much of the time at the Da Nang bomb dump, where rockets regularly flew overhead. Part of his duties included driving the commanding officer and 2nd-lieutenant around, despite not having a driver’s license at the time. Dad left the service with the rank of Lance Corporal, although he said he would’ve made corporal had he listened better! In 1977, Dad married our mother, Jennifer Saidak, and they spent the next 42 years bugging each other, arguing, laughing, and being the best parents in the world to us. Over the course of his lifetime, Dad worked for Bendix, the Butler Corp., and Strathmore Paper Company (International Paper). Dad always impressed on us the value of hard work. (We haven’t always listened). As the father of two girls, Dad made sure that we had a working knowledge of all sorts of equipment: from hammers to power drills, riding lawnmowers to pole saws, snowblowers to sitting on roof-tops tacking on shingles, and so much more. (How well we can use each item is a different matter!) Dad loved working on equipment; assembling model cars; watching NASCAR, road courses, the Red Sox, and the Patriots; listening to the oldies (’60s R&B and Doo-Wop); and being very free with his opinions on current events. Dad was very, very proud to be a Marine and a Vietnam Vet; if you happen to see one while you’re out and about, please do us a favor and tell them, “Thank you for your service” and “Welcome home”. It always made Dad smile when someone said that to him. Dad was also a friend to the animals; he loved sitting outside, watching the birds and occasionally meeting up with a black bear. He will be dearly missed by our three cats: Rascal, Charlie, and his special buddy, Radar. Dad is survived and deeply missed by his wife and our mother, Jen, and his two daughters, Melissa and Tracy. He leaves his four brothers: Christopher and wife Patricia of Southampton; Thomas of Lake Charles, LA; Andy and wife Michelle of West Springfield; and Tony and wife Maria of Westfield; and sister, Donna and husband Rick, of Dunedin, FL. He also leaves many nieces and nephews, as well as a large, extended family. He was predeceased by his stepfather, William Bennett, in 2012; his father in 2016; and his mother in 2018. He also leaves behind his lunch buddies at the Westfield Senior Center. Dad’s wake will be on Thursday, March 5, at Firtion-Adams Funeral Home at 76 Broad Street, Westfield, from 4-7pm. Funeral Service will be Friday at 11AM in the funeral home followed, by burial in St. Mary’s Cemetery in Westfield on Friday, March 6 with military honors. In lieu of flowers, we ask that you make donations to Holy Trinity Church, Westfield or the Wounded Warrior Project. Semper Fi, Marine! We love you!
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