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Avid skier from Champion loved making pizzelles for family, friends

Patrick Varine
| Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018, 11:00 p.m.
Eugene T. Lucente of Champion died Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018, of congestive heart failure. He was 81.
Eugene T. Lucente of Champion died Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018, of congestive heart failure. He was 81.

Eugene Lucente loved making pizzelles almost as much as his family and friends loved receiving them.

“He made them for everyone around Christmas and gave them out,” said his daughter, Bethany Lucente. “Everyone loved ‘Gene's pizzelles.' ”

Eugene T. Lucente of Champion died Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018, of congestive heart failure. He was 81.

Mr. Lucente was born July 30, 1936, in Pittsburgh, a son of the late Joseph and Clara LaDonne Lucente. He grew up in Pittsburgh's Highland Park neighborhood and graduated from Pittsburgh Central Catholic High School.

Mr. Lucente was an avid skier and a member of the Mon Valley Ski Club. His love for the slopes was how he met his wife of more than five decades, Susanna Gazzo Lucente.

“They both belonged to ski clubs and met while they were skiing,” Bethany Lucente said.

The couple built a house in Champion in 1965.

Mr. Lucente worked in construction and retired as construction superintendent for Pittsburgh-based P.J. Dick Inc.

“I reported to Eugene when I first started at the company, working as a project engineer on a Kane regional hospital project,” P.J. Dick CEO Clifford Rowe said. “He was a wonderful man with a wealth of knowledge to share. I learned a lot under his supervision. He was well respected by colleagues, clients and subcontractors.”

Bethany Lucente said she will always remember her father's skill with stone masonry.

“He did a lot of stonework and was really well known for that,” she said. “He did some beautiful fireplaces and stuff like that in the area, and he built the house we grew up in.”

Mr. Lucente served briefly in the Army Reserves, working as a cook.

“He enjoyed cooking, and eating,” Bethany Lucente said. “He loved all kinds of Italian food.”

Bethany Lucente said people who knew her father described him as a very sweet man.

“He was an easygoing, mellow guy,” she said.

Mr. Lucente is survived by his wife, Susanna Gazzo Lucente; his daughter, Bethany Lucente, of Champion; and a brother, Donald Lucente, of Pittsburgh.

Friends will be received from 2 to 4 and 6 to 9 p.m. Friday at the Clyde Brooks Funeral Home, 146 Municipal Road in Melcroft. Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Saturday at St. Michael's of the Valley Episcopal Church, 2533 Route 381 in Rector, with interment at St. Michael's Cemetery.

Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-850-2862, pvarine@tribweb.com or via Twitter @MurrysvilleStar.

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