Michael J. Tartaglia of Niagara Falls, a veteran of two wars who served in the Air Force for 32 years, died Saturday in Mount St. Mary's Hospital, Lewiston, after a long illness. He was 73.
Born in Newark, N.J., he attended schools there and was a graduate of Southwest Texas State College. He moved to Niagara Falls in 1979.
During his Air Force career, Mr. Tartaglia served in the Korean and Vietnam wars. He received an array of medals and commendations for distinguished service, including a Purple Heart.
He retired from the Air Force in 1984 and worked for the state Parks Department in Niagara Falls from 1987 to 1998.
In Niagara Falls, he was active in many community events, including the Festival of Lights. He arranged for American flags to be flown in Prospect Point Park during the Iran hostage crisis.
Mr. Tartaglia served on many boards, including those of Niagara University, the Boy Scouts, the Council of the Arts and the local chapter of the American Cancer Society.
Surviving are his wife of 39 years, Evette Watkins Tartaglia; a son, Marc J. of Niagara Falls; a daughter, Victoria A. of Denver; a brother, Marc S. of East Hanover, N.J.; and four grandchildren.
A memorial Mass will be offered at 10 a.m. Friday in Prince of Peace Catholic Church, 1055 Military Road. Burial will be private.