Florence G. Boncewich, WAC veteran
Florence G. Boncewich, a World War II Women’s Army Corps veteran and homemaker, died Sept. 23 at Gilchrist Hospice Care in Towson of complications from a fall she suffered earlier at her home.
The Brooklandville resident was 89.
The daughter of Michael Thomas Gallagher, a coal miner, and Violet Zincavage Gallagher, a homemaker, Florence Irene Gallagher was born in Shenandoah, Pa., where she spent her early years before moving with her family in 1942 to Baltimore.
The first day she was in the city, she met her future husband, John Boncewich, who helped her family move into their Patterson Park home. The next day, he walked her to Patterson Park High School.
After she graduated in 1945 from Patterson Park, she enlisted in the Women’s Army Corps — also known as the WACs — and completed her training at Fort Oglethorpe, Ga., where she learned to work with soldiers who had lost limbs after being injured in combat.
She was featured in Stars and Stripes working with an injured soldier, family members said.
After her discharge in 1946, she returned to Baltimore and married Mr. Boncewich that year. The couple settled in Dundalk, where they raised their two children.
Her husband, who retired from the old General Motors Broening Highway plant, where he worked in the traffic department, died in 2002.
Mrs. Boncewich was an active member of Holy Trinity Russian Orthodox Church, where she spent many years arranging bus trips for the church and General Motors retirees. “They traveled as far north as Canada and as far south as Florida and Louisiana,” said her daughter, Nancy Boncewich Stueler of Brooklandville. “They had a party on the bus, and she made sure that everyone had a good time.”
Mrs. Boncewich and her husband enjoyed spending time at a second home on Ocean City, where they fished from their boat, Flo Baby. They also liked to entertain family and friends.
She made clear in her instructions to her daughter that she wanted a party instead of a Mass after her death.
“She loved a well-made mai tai or an expensive glass of champagne and dressing up,” said her daughter, who owns the La Fontaine Bleue catering firm with her husband.
An invitation-only party celebrating Mrs. Boncewich’s life will be held Oct. 22 at her daughter’s home.
In addition to her daughter, she is survived by several nieces and nephews. Her son, Gary John Boncewich, was killed in an automobile accident in 1968.