On March 7, 2023, Roman Szyjka of Vero Beach, Florida passed away peacefully. He was 77 years old.
Roman was born in Srebny Borek, Poland. As a young child, he and his family immigrated to the United States from Poland aboard the ship MS Batory. Roman grew up in Baltimore, Maryland and graduated from Mergenthaler Vocational-Technical High School. He earned his bachelor's degree in Industrial Management from the University of Baltimore, School of Business Industry and Management.
Roman began his career as a Machinist with Ward Machinery. He later joined Northrop Grumman (formerly Westinghouse Electric) as a Manufacturing Engineer. In his over 30-year career with Northrop Grumman, he supported many critical programs of national importance including the MK-48 Advanced Capabilities guided submarine-launched torpedoes.
Roman was an avid boater and loved spending time on the Chesapeake Bay. He served as Commodore of the Middle River Yacht Club in 1996, was a member of the Board of Directors of the Key Yacht Club, and a member of the Chesapeake Commodores Club. Roman's favorite place was at the helm of his boat.
Roman and his wife, Paula enjoyed many adventures over the course of their 25-year marriage. In addition to boating, they enjoyed traveling the east coast on their motor home from Niagara Falls to Key West and so many places in between. They established homes in Delaware and Florida and made many wonderful friendships along the way.
Roman was the proud father of two children, David and Marcia, and Dziadzi (grandfather) to Sofia and Stina.
Roman lived his life to the fullest. He instilled the value of hard work in his family. He overcame many challenges over the course of his life including a life altering brain tumor diagnosis. Roman embodied fortitude and tenacity. Those are the traits that powered his brain tumor recovery and gave him 13 years of beautiful life experiences after his diagnosis.
Roman was predeceased by his parents, Edward and Wanda Szyjka, his brother Thaddeus Szyjka and his sister Martha Szyjka.
Roman is survived by his wife, Paula Szyjka of Vero Beach, FL; his son, David Szyjka (Kristin) of Baltimore, MD; his daughter, Marcia Nystrom (Torbjorn) of Fairfax, VA; his granddaughters, Sofia and Stina Nystrom of Fairfax, VA; his sister, Helen Bender of Baltimore, MD; his sister, Christine Wroten (Curtis) of Port Charlotte, FL; his brother-in-law, Carmine Cianchetta (Susan) of Easton, MD; his brother-in-law, Joe Cianchetta (Eva) of Chester, MD; and many cherished extended family members and dear friends.
Family and friends of Roman are invited to honor his life on Tuesday, June 6th. Visitation will be 9-10am at Kaczorowski Funeral Home P.A. Memorial service at 10am. Interment will follow at Holy Rosary Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in memory of Roman to the Johns Hopkins Department of Neurosurgery Charitable Foundation or the Visiting Nurse Association & Hospice Foundation