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Gary Hancharik (#47247773)
 member for 4 years, 7 months, 27 days
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Bio and Links
Bio Photo I originally stumbled onto Find A Grave in February of 2010 while using Roots Magic genealogy software. At that time, there were only 43 million names in the database.

It was always my desire to organize all of my funeral death cards for my relatives in one location as a shrine to honor them. I decided why not make memorials for them on Find A Grave instead? One by one I entered in all of my relatives. Later, I went back and added personal bio's for as many as I could.

I got into the habit of checking the obits from a newspaper that included my hometown and started creating memorials for folks that lived there, people that worked at National Tube, and former members of my old church. I then defaulted to creating memorials for all of the obits. The newspaper went to a larger format with more surrounding counties listed and it became difficult to put in all of the time required to accomplish this on a daily basis while maintaining a family life.

My focus then switched to doing actual footwork in local cemeteries gathering tombstone photos to post. This is a popular diversion here in the South and almost all of the cemeteries have been documented by a few locals so I concentrated on newer gravesites. Up North, the cemetery that my parents are buried in only had 200 entries at that time. There are probably 50K graves there. I would love to take a weeks vacation to photograph all the graves. I'm not one of these folks that contacts the cemetery office for a master list and then submit an electronic spreadsheet entering in thousands in a second. I like to enter in my memorials the old fashioned way, one at a time, doing as much research to link family members.

There is a feeling of satisfaction being able to create memorials and post photos that will be used by future generations creating family trees or just satisfying their curiosity as to what happened to John Doe, their old schoolteacher, neighbor, or boyfriend?

A portion of my vacation was spent in the summer of 2012 putting two small church cemeteries on the map. I had researched the areas that I was going to visit and found that one of the cemeteries only had one entry while the other showed only 200. Google satellite photos revealed hundreds more so my goal was to document both. My son helped me to photograph the Polish church cemetery in Helmetta, NJ. I had photographed a smaller Ukrainian church cemetery a few miles from his old home in Connecticut. We had driven past that area many times and never knew that there was a cemetery hiding there.

Now, I like to research old newspapers online seeking to create memorials for those that have been long forgotten.

I will honor all memorial transfers outside of the F.A.G. guidelines. You don't even have to be related. I would rather transfer the memorial to someone who knew them and has a genuine desire to maintain their memorial. The only exception on transfers would be a relative but I have transferred several of my memorials to those that were closer related.

Feel free to use any of my photos that I have posted. I'm not going to sit here and thump on my chest claiming that I have "copyrights" on my pictures. If I didn't want to share, then I wouldn't have bothered to take the photo in the first place.

At this time I would like to thank all of you that have visited my memorials and left tokens, flowers and messages. As an example, what are the chances that a total stranger would stop at my folks tombstone in person, not knowing anything about them and proceed to say a few kind words or leave a flower? Zero! I tried to put as many of my relatives on the Online Stroll so you will have the opportunity to learn a little about who they were and bring them to you. I'd also like to thank those folks that provide tombstone photos for my memorials when I haven't even requested them. The system doesn't notify you of this and I only discover this when I am doing maintenance.

I grew up in the Pittsburgh, PA area and am currently living near Dallas, TX. Feel free to contact me if I can be of any help with your F.A.G. needs. Some of you already have and I tried to research as much as possible to give you the best answer.

My goal on Find A Grave is to provide as much accuracy as possible. For me, it's not about the numbers. I constantly send edit requests to other members and likewise have received edit requests when new information becomes available.
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Contributions to
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 • 4,760 Memorials Added
 • 4,718 Memorials Managed
 • 20 Memorials/Week
 • 3,235 Photos
 • 2 Photo Requests
 • 61 Volunteer Photos Taken
 • 4,754 Virtual Flowers
 • 6 Virtual Cemeteries
 • 84 Fame Ratings
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Messages left for Gary Hancharik (130)[Leave Message]
Danny Warren
Thank you!
Gary, you are every kind of wonderful. I've been trying for years to find this article. It means a lot to me and to my family. Thank you so much!!!!
Added by Danny Warren on Oct 03, 2014 8:47 PM
Danny Warren
Trevor Elias Lewis
Hi Gary,

Would you please transfer Trevor Elias Lewis' memorial to me? (119623662) He is part of my family and I have a lot to add to it. Can you possibly tell me also where you got the information you posted in the bio? It's all correct, but I can't find it online.

Thank you so much,
Danny Warren
Added by Danny Warren on Oct 01, 2014 7:56 PM
Marcia Lynne vonGunden
Transfer and a big thank you
Hello again Gary,
Thank you for your generosity in transferring:
Kathryn March Waugaman # 59988916
to my care. I have successfully connected her with her parents and four of her ten half-siblings. As I receive more information, I will add it to Our shared memorial.
With sincerest appreciation,
# 47059326
Added by Marcia Lynne vonGunden on Sep 22, 2014 2:48 PM
Clyde William Howell
Thanks, Gary, for the links to Clyde William Howell's parents.

Added by jeffrey on Sep 21, 2014 8:44 AM
Mildred Murtland (Touhalisky)

Thank you for transferring my Aunt Millie's Memorial to me.


Added by Joe on Sep 16, 2014 7:57 PM
Stanley Tykarski
RE: George Hancharik
No problem. Glad I could help.
Added by Stanley Tykarski on Sep 04, 2014 7:58 PM
Stanley Tykarski
George Hancharik memorial
Thank you for sponsoring the memorial. Would you like me to transfer management to you?
Added by Stanley Tykarski on Sep 03, 2014 9:14 PM
On memorial #74701705 Betty Roll in her obit on this memorial it states her Father is George; this is incorrect. Her Father is Howard M. Young #130929622. Could you please correct this in the memorial. She is my Cousin and her living Brother Louis Young would appreciate the correction also.

Thank you for work on Find a Grave.

Golden Girl
Added by GOLDENGIRL on Aug 26, 2014 2:09 PM
Meghan E. Jones
Joseph S. Messino, Jr. Grave
Dear Mr. Hancharik:

I belong to 2 Facebook groups who love, honor, and respect the beauty and history of older cemeteries and their exquisite funerary art.

One of our members posted a touching photo of the Mr. Joseph S. Messino, Jr. tombstone (the same view you have here) and we were instantly touched by the size of the sculpture and the skill of the artist who carved his full-sized image in stone.

We were deeply saddened by Mr. Messino's young age at the time of his passing and were curious about the cause of his death. One of our members wondered if the odd bend in his sculpted leg may indicate the underlying reason for his passing.

We truly care about the people behind the images and leave loving tributes to them online. May I ask if you know how he passed away? I've done research online to no avail as I can't pay for it.

Thank you for your assistance and keep up the wonderful work you are doing in honor of those who have passed before us. God bless you.

Meghan E. Jones
New Member


P.S. I am also keenly interested in knowing who the artist was who rendered this image in stone. I would welcome a message from anybody who knows anything about this young man and his story.
Added by Meghan E. Jones on Aug 22, 2014 4:18 PM
Judith Ann Chatlos Sike
Very nice bio you wrote there, I enjoyed reading it.

As to the Sike memorial you entered (#119102436) do you know for a fact that she is buried in Mt. Olivet in Heidelberg? I have photographed all of the headstones there and did not find her or her deceased husband's graves. She was laid out in the area of another Mt. Olivet Cemetery, which is in Beaver County, Hopewell Township, Aliquippa. I am presently redoing the Heidelberg cemetery and I am finding a LOT of people mistakenly put in this cemetery on findagrave, when they really belong in the Aliquippa one. I wish they would say in the obits which one so it would be easier to identify.

So, if you know for a fact, she is in Heidelberg, please let me know. If you aren't sure I would say she is at the Aliquippa Mt. Olivet and you should change it on her memorial. I did look at her obit and it doesn't specify.

Added by The.Mentalist on Aug 15, 2014 12:47 AM
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