Eugene A. “Gene” Martino
May 1, 1923 - November 14, 2018
Eugene A. “Gene” Martino of Newark, DE, a retired engineer and decorated World War II veteran, died Wednesday, November 14, 2018.
He was born May 1, 1923 in New Haven, Connecticut to the late Amilcare and Teresa Martino. After graduating from high school in 1941 he enlisted in the Army Air Force and honorably served in the 486th Heavy Bombardment Group in England as a radio operator and gunner on a B-17. His group courageously completed 35 successful combat missions in Germany and they were awarded the prestigious Air Medal with five Oak Clusters.
Gene attended Villanova University on the GI Bill and earned a degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1950. He invented the Ejection Seat Catapult device that could safely eject a pilot or crew members from disabled aircraft. Gene’s innovative invention was awarded a US Patent and has since been utilized in the construction of modern military aircraft.
In 1958 he joined Thiokol Chemical in Elkton, Maryland. He helped engineer the design of rockets for space programs including Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo. In 1973 he joined the US Army Chemical Corps at Edgewood Arsenal and worked to remotely extract dangerous chemical weapon agents from sealed ammunitions. Eugene retired in 1987. He was a member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics as an Associate Fellow.
He was pre-deceased by his first wife, Janet. Gene is survived by his second wife Barbara; children, Steve (Debbie), Susan (Yan), David (Tena), Mary Pat (Norman), Carol (Steve), Linda (John), Suzy (Mike) and Dianna (Gibby); 22 grandchildren; and 16 great grandchildren.
Visitation will be Sunday, November 25th from 4 pm until 6 pm and funeral mass will be Monday, November 26th at 10 am. Both will be held at the St. Thomas More Oratory, 45 Lovett Ave. Newark, DE 19711. Interment will be held in All Saints Cemetery, 6001 Kirkwood Hwy, Wilmington, DE.
Donations can be made to St. Thomas More Oratory at the address listed above.