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John M. Jircitano, 90, retired Goodyear chemist<br> Nov. 22, 1919 -- June 9, 2010

John M. Jircitano, a retired Goodyear chemist and World War II veteran, died June 9 at his home in Youngstown. He was 90.

Born in Niagara Falls, he earned a bachelor's degree in chemistry from Niagara University.

In 1942, he entered the Army Air Forces and trained as a pilot. A first lieutenant, he was part of the D-Day invasion and served as B-24 co-pilot. While on a bombing mission, over Mannheim, Germany, his plane was hit, forcing him and his crew to bail out above enemy territory.

He was captured and held for nine months in a prisoner of war camp before being liberated by the 14th Armored Division. Mr. Jircitano was award the Purple Heart among other medals and ribbons.

After the war, he worked as a chemist at Goodyear for 37 years, retiring in 1983.

During his retirement, Mr. Jircitano spent much of his spare time crafting hammocks, birdfeeders and sundials, which he and his wife sold at local craft fairs.

He was a past member of the Youngstown Volunteer Fire Company and volunteered at Artpark from 1983 to 1994.

He is survived by his wife of 63 years, the former Julie Ianni; two daughters, Joan Orsi and Wendy Madigan; three sons, Mark, Alan and Jeff; a sister, Grace Vaughan; and three brothers, Ross Eracitano, Arthur and Albert.

A memorial Mass will be offered at 11 a.m. Saturday in St. Bernard Catholic Church, 218 Hinman St., Youngstown.