George J. Fincik

George J. Fincik, 86, of Smithfield, passed away on Thursday, April 1, 2021.

He was the husband of Marie D. Sears to whom he was happily married for 57 years.

Born in Clairton, PA, he was a son of the late Michael and Mary (Matola) Fincik, Sr.

Mr. Fincik moved to Rhode Island in 1968. He was a graduate of Josephinum High School in Ohio; he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Education from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh and his master’s degree in Linguistics from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, with further graduate studies in American/English Literature at Rhode Island College. Mr. Fincik taught English for the Barrington schools for 24 years. He previously taught at Riverside Junior High School in East Providence, Ypsilanti High School in Michigan, and Kirkland High School in Ohio. He was a member of NEA. He had held leadership positions on the local level for the Teacher Associations in Ohio and Michigan. While in Ohio, he was Vice President of the Teachers’ Association. While in Michigan, as president of the Teachers’ Association, he helped initiate and draft the first and most comprehensive English and Foreign Language Departments in Ypsilanti High School. While in Barrington, he was an advisor to the students’ Literary Magazine and was an advisor for three years to the Class of 1983.

He worked for The Samaritans of Rhode Island as a volunteer for a number of years: listening on the phone, acting as monitor for Safe Place for survivors of suicide, speaking in public and on the radio about Suicide Prevention, appearing on TV on behalf of The Samaritans, teaching a graduate course on Suicide Prevention at Rhode Island College, and authoring two books for the Samaritans: A Teacher’s Manuel for the Prevention of Suicide Among Adolescents and the Samaritan Volunteer Preparation Manuel.

He was President of REAP (Religious Education and Adult Programs) for the Catholic East Bay Deanery of the Diocese of Providence. Upon retiring from teaching, he volunteered to be an Administrative Assistant at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Seekonk, MA, for several years. His greatest joy was to oversee the renovation of Mt. Carmel’s sanctuary, sacristies, and entryways and writing job descriptions for parish personnel and a manual for Altar Servers. He also served as Acolyte, Lector, and Extraordinary  Eucharistic Minister and taught a CCD confirmation class while at Mt. Carmel.

While living in Smithfield, he served as a volunteer for the Pheasant Ridge Condo Association and created a financial line-item budget for the association.

Besides his wife, he leaves two daughters, Marie R. Young and Marcia L. Clark and her husband Kevin, two grandchildren, Shannon and Michael Barry, one sister, Maryann Baird, and several nieces and nephews. He was the brother of the late John, Michael, Elsie, Albert, Edward, and Joseph Fincik.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Thursday, April 8, 2021, at 10:00 am in Saint Michael’s Church, 80 Farnum Pike, Smithfield, RI. Burial will be held in Mt. St. Mary’s Cemetery, Pawtucket. Calling hours respectfully omitted. In lieu of flowers, donations to The Samaritans of Rhode Island in his memory would be appreciated.


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19 entries.
Lisa Chartier Lentz from Fort Myers wrote on June 17, 2021 at 7:38 am
Oh, Mr. Fincik, you slayed us with your words and inspiration to always crave knowledge. I will never forget you, rest in peace. O Captain! My Captain!
Sharon Winterbottom Gregory from Riverside wrote on June 16, 2021 at 10:33 am
I am so grateful I was blessed with Mr. Fincik’s influence in my education. He was a wonderful compassionate teacher. Many blessings to his family. I’m so sorry for your loss.
The Samaritans of Rhode Island from Pawtucket wrote on April 25, 2021 at 11:17 pm
To the family of George J. Fincik, Please accept our sincerest condolences on the passing of George. There are still volunteers at The Samaritans who remember George very well and his many contributions to the agency. His work is still being used today. We sincerely appreciate you remembering us at this time. It was very thoughtful and helpful. In his memory, we will try to continue the good deeds. For more information about The Samaritans and its programs, please visit Warm regards, Denise Panichas, Ex. Director
Nancy Kohli from East Molesey, Surrey United Kingdom wrote on April 8, 2021 at 10:54 am
Dear Marie and Family, My deepest condolences for your loss. I remember Mr Fincik fondly as a wonderful English teacher and our advisor for the Class of 1983. His immeasurable impression on our lives was that of his own special nature. Through his humanity and inspiration, he instilled in us all that he personified, which was a joyful, beautiful person who touched so many lives and made our world a much better place. He not only taught his students but also was a mentor in our young lives and encouraged and supported us to reach our greatest potential. All the teachings, friendships, help and love that he gave throughout his life, to all he taught, knew and loved, came from the biggest heart of this great man.
Donna Bruno from Ft. Lauderdale,FL wrote on April 7, 2021 at 10:34 pm
Dear Marie and family, It was my privilege to teach with George in the English Department at Barrington High School for many years. He was one of the finest individuals I have ever known, deeply committed to God, his family, his students, and his work as a Samaritan. He had a positive impact on many lives. We shared a free period (which was never really free), and each day at 9:30 he would phone someone to get him/her out of bed with encouraging words to begin the day. If they didn't respond at first, he would call again a few minutes later. I was deeply impressed by such devotion to those who needed him. I considered him a modern-day saint. If anyone is in heaven, it is George. May God hold him safely in the palm of His hand.
Pam Rouch from Highlands Ranch, CO wrote on April 7, 2021 at 10:02 pm
Mrs. Fincik and family/ My sincerest condolences on Mr. Fincik’s passing. He was a great teacher and a rock to many of us during high school. Above all he was a kind and wonderful person who will be missed.
Matthew Fagan from Smithfield wrote on April 7, 2021 at 8:28 pm
Dear Marie and family, I am deeply sorry to hear of George's passing. I will miss talking to him before 5:00 mass like we did for many years. May he rest in peace. Matt Fagan
Barbara Allen Faron from Barrington High School Class of 1983 wrote on April 7, 2021 at 4:38 pm
Mr. Fincik was a remarkable man and teacher. He made our class feel so encouraged and accepted during a time in life where this was incredibly important. Thank you for being the teacher you do not forget. He had a way of making everyone feel noticed. May you Rest In Peace and know God’s great love in eternity.
Charlie & Sue Fairchild from Alexandria, VA wrote on April 7, 2021 at 12:21 pm
Dear Marie and family, we are so deeply sorry to hear of the passing of George. We loved reading about his remarkable life as a teacher, mentor, helper and leader, as well as a beloved husband of 57 years, father, grandfather, brother and friend to many. We cannot imagine what you are going through. We hope you feel George with you, especially in those quiet moments when the world is still. We are holding you all gently in our prayers. God Bless you. With love and sympathy, Charlie & Sue Fairchild
Pamela Fairchild from Alexandria wrote on April 7, 2021 at 11:54 am
Dear Marie, Marie, Marcia & Kevin, grandchildren Shannon and Michael Barry, Maryann, nieces, nephews and all of George's family and friends, Our hearts go out to all of you. I am so proud to learn about the beautiful life of George from his obituary and the loving guestbook entries, especially the entry from one of his students. I picture George being greeted in heaven by Aunt Mary; with my mom, Elizabeth Fairchild; Aunt Irene Polakovic; Aunt Verne; Aunt Sue; Whitey; Baba and all the other Matolas and other family members hugging him and loving him. Sending all of you love and strength. I will be storming heaven with prayers for George and all of you during the funeral tomorrow. All our love, Pam, and children, Elizabeth and Winston
Sister Felicia Matola, FMSA from Wau. South Sudan wrote on April 7, 2021 at 10:30 am
Dear Marie,- Marie& Marcia- , and Maryanne, Thank you for the beautiful obituary of George. He was a really humble man- he shared very few of his accomplishments with me so it was wonderful reading about this side of George! He did tell me of his work with survivors of suicide and gave me a manual he wrote for youths facing suicide. All his other contributions to bettering Teachers' situations and all his work in the church is truly admirable! May his memory live on in the people he helped, and may you all be comforted in knowing how much he is missed by so many people, including me. Love and prayers, Felicia
Natalie {DiPonte) Migneault from Cranston wrote on April 6, 2021 at 10:53 am
Dear Marie, I extend to you my deepest sympathy on the loss of your beloved husband. May the sweet memories of your many years together bring you comfort in the difficult days ahead. Peace eternal be granted him.🙏 sincerely, Natalie
ROBERT ISAACSON from North Kingstown wrote on April 6, 2021 at 8:16 am
Mr. Fincik was one of the most memorable teachers I believe I ever encountered. I was in his Senior English class at Ypsilanti High School in Michigan, 1964-65.He played a role in my being accepted into the University of Michigan and I would also say was an influence to my becoming a teacher and having a successful 30 year career. George Fincik was an admirable man and more importantly an excellent teacher and individual. God Bless You, Mr. Fincik
Susan Bradley Sweet from Vero Beach, FL wrote on April 6, 2021 at 6:59 am
My deepest sympathy to my favorite teacher ever. I am sorry to hear of George’s passing. His was a life well lived. I think of you often with fond memories and hold you and your family in my prayers.
Jennifer Case (Oliver) from Riverside wrote on April 5, 2021 at 8:47 pm
Mrs Fincik and family, I am so sorry to hear of the passing of Mr Fincik. It has been many years since I have seen or spoke to you but I still cherish the time and memories. My thoughts and prayers to you and your family, may you find peace during this difficult time.
Rae Holland Long from East Greenwich wrote on April 5, 2021 at 7:46 pm
Marie, on behalf of the East Bay Retired Teachers Assn. I'd like to extend our sympathy on the death of George. What an amazing man he was. You and the girls must be so proud of his many accomplishments and charitable works. Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this sad time.
Claire (Sosebee) Zimmerman from Warwick, RI wrote on April 5, 2021 at 12:19 pm
Mrs. Fincik and Family, my deepest sympathies for the loss of Mr. Fincik. He was one of the nicest people I've ever met. My prayers and thoughts are with you.
Susan & Joseph Hutton from Smithfield wrote on April 5, 2021 at 11:05 am
George was a sweet and very caring man. He greeted you with a beautiful smile every time you met him. There was nothing George wouldn't do or say to make you feel special. He will be missed. Love, Joe & Sue
Maria and Gary Oliver from East Providence wrote on April 5, 2021 at 10:47 am
Mrs. Finick and family our deepest sympathy for your loss has been many years we haven't seen each other but never have we forgotten your family you were very dear to our family from back at whiteneck school my daughter Jennifer Oliver spent alot of time at your house in Kent heights she always talked about Mr. Finicks with curious George may you find peace at this difficult time.