Regina (Jeanne) Stasia Gashi, age 91, of Newville and formerly
of Shickshinny, joined her husband Anthony (Whitey) L. Gashi, on her journey from this world on April 5, 2016.
parents, Walenty Baluta and Valeria (nee Izbicki) Baluta, escaped the relentless wars and hardships of western provinces of
the Russian Empire in the 1800s via Bremen, Germany on the vessel Oldenburg. The Balutas settled in Northeastern Pennsylvania
where they played a crucial role in founding the first Polish Roman Catholic mission church in Fairmont Springs, Pennsylvania
to serve the growing Roman Catholic community. Regina and her husband continued this tradition of community service by supporting
the building of a permanent local church and participating in local economic development, including the Shickshinny Lake Association.
Regina and Whitey were owners and operators
of Muhlenburg Lumber & Supply and before that the Gashi Timber Company. Regina devoted herself to family, church and business
in equal measure. While Regina was a natural organizer of people and events and a fiercely productive person, she was at heart
an artist and was happiest creating beauty by restoring antique furniture, raising a garden from weeds or painting portraits
capturing the raw essence of human personality. But Regina will best be remembered as a good and kind friend to so many and
as a deeply loving and fiercely loyal mother to her children.
Regina was a passionate participant in life from an early age, often
taking a lead role in championing sensible solutions to social issues first at high school and later in the larger community
in which she lived and worked. She was equally passionate about her country and volunteered to help the war effort during
World War II at facilities in Berwick, Pennsylvania which had converted their production for the war effort (Berwick American
Car and Foundry (“ACF”). While at ACF, like many women of that time, she was asked to assume
tasks that had earlier been relegated to men–she learned to operate forklifts, fuel trucks and other heavy equipment
used to move munitions and supplies necessary for the war effort. Later in life, after retiring from business, she became
a dedicated hospice worker.
and Whitey have four surviving children, Larry Anthony Gashi of Jacksonville, Florida, Mark Christopher Gashi of Bedford,
New Hampshire, Maryann Gashi-Butler of Newville, Pennsylvania (married to Professor William E Butler) and John Anthony Gashi
of Annapolis, Maryland. Regina also leaves behind two much loved grandchildren, Ashley Ann Gashi and Zachary Anthony Gashi.
She is survived by siblings Constance Dula and Jerry Baluta.
A Roman Catholic funeral mass followed by burial will be held at Saint
Martha’s Church, 260 Bonnieville Road, Fairmont Springs, Pennsylvania on May 14, 2016 at 10 AM. Gifts
in memory of Regina Gashi may be made to Regina’s beloved Flower and Garden Club or Sacred Music Choir of St. Martha’s
Church or to a church or charity of your choice. Ewing Brothers Funeral Home, Carlisle is in charge of
Death, be not proud, though some have called thee
dreadful, for thou art not so;
For those whom thou think'st thou dost
…One short sleep
past, we wake eternally
And death shall be no more; Death, thou shalt die.
“Death, be not proud”
- John Donne