Gary James Mendyka
02 Dec 1946 - 29 Apr 2009
Gary James Mendyka, 62, an administrative assistant, of Las Vegas, passed away April 29, 2009. He was born Dec. 2, 1946, in Los Angeles, and was a 19-year resident of Nevada. Gary started life with his family in Culver City, Calif. They moved to Tujunga, Calif., in 1956. Following graduation from Verdugo Hills High School and two years at Glendale Junior College, he joined the U.S. Army. He served in Vietnam until 1968, where he saw active combat in the infantry as a sharpshooter. He received the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Campaign Medal, the Combat Infantryman Badge and the Vietnam Service Medal. He met his life-partner, Paul, in 1973. They lived in southern California until moving to Las Vegas in 1990. Gary worked for Converse Consultants for 15 years. Gary and Paul were very active in a number of Las Vegas charitable organizations, including the Neon Squares and the Nevada Gay Rodeo Association. Over the course of 18 years, Gary held numerous positions within the NGRA, including two years as public relations director and served in a variety of key roles for the annual Bighorn Rodeo. He was also very active in participating in countless charitable fundraising activities. One of his favorites was performing in Broadway-style fund-raising shows. He was preceded in death by his loving parents, Edith and John Mendyka, in 1996; and life-partner, Paul C. Smith, in 1999, after more than 25 years together. Gary is survived by his sister, Karen M. Huff-Pawlik and husband, Emil Pawlik, along with his children, Michael, Debbie, Jeff and Suzy; cousin, Jean McEvoy; nephews, Michael Huff, along with his children, Taylor, Brianna and Sheridan, Matthew Huff and wife, Katie, along with their children, Skye and Greyson James; and niece, Malia Huff. There will be a memorial service with full Military Honors at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 9, at Desert Memorial Chapel, 1111 Las Vegas Blvd. N. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the NGRA, P.O. Box 96055, Las Vegas, NV 89193, New Hope Hospice of Henderson, (702) 736-8180, Care Calendar, c/o Bortel Family, P.O. Box 93, Stockdale, TX 78160, or the cancer-related charity of your choice.
At Wheel & Deal, 1997
- Las Vegas Review-Journal Las Vegas (NV), Sunday 03 May 2009, p.7B col.1