November 19, 2010
FACULTY Peter Sira (95)
PGHSAA KOII, March, 2011
Peter Sira, 95, died Nov. 19, 2010, in Grass Valley where he had lived in retirement. Born Aug. 1, 1915, in Chicago, IL, Mr. Sira taught at PGHS in the 1960s.
He served in the US Navy for 23 years, retiring as lieutenant commander, after serving aboard the battleship New York in the Pacific during WWII.
Graduating from Central Michigan University with a master's degree in 1961, he first taught in Michigan, then moved to PG in 1964 where he taught history and civics for 10 years and also served as social studies department head.
He was president for the Central Coast section of the California Teachers Association during the late 1960s; and a member of Phi Delta Kappa. He enjoyed gardening, fishing, reading, family and friends.
Survivors include two daughters: Pamela O'Malley and Kristen McGrew, and four grandchildren. He was predeceased by his wife Marilyn.
Grass Valley Union, CA Dec 4, 2010
Peter Sira died Nov. 19. There will be a service in the spring. Peter was born Aug. 1, 1915, in Chicago, Ill. The third son of John and Agnes (Neduchal) Sira of Czechoslovakia, he was a first-generation American. The family moved to St. Johns, Mich., and began a small vegetable farm. All three boys worked in the fields, helping their parents. Peter attended Rodney Wilson High School, where he played varsity football for three years, ran track, wrote poetry, excelled in academics, and graduated in 1933.
He joined the U.S. Navy in 1935 and served for almost 23 years, rising from a seaman recruit to lieutenant commander. During his naval career, he served on the battleship New York when it represented the United States at the coronation of King George VI in London in 1937. He also fought in the Pacific theater during World War ll, where he was injured and spent time in New Zealand during his recovery. He also served on the LST 512, an exhibition ship that traveled the Mississippi during the war demonstrating to American citizens the kind of battles their sailors were waging in defense of freedom.
After retiring he went to Central Michigan University, graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1959 and a Master of Arts degree in 1961. He then taught U.S. history and government at Mt. Pleasant High School in Michigan.
He moved to Pacific Grove, Calif., in 1964 and taught at Pacific Grove High School for 10 years, serving as social studies department head for part of that time. He was president for the Central Coast section of the California Teachers Association during the late 1960s. He was a member of Phi Delta Kappa.
After retiring, he and his wife moved to Grass Valley, where they built a home next to a creek. He enjoyed gardening, fishing, reading, family and friends. Peter met and married Marilyn Garling (of Lansing, Mich.) on Dec. 7, 1944, in Long Beach, Calif. They were married for 51 years. Peter has two daughters: Pamela O'Malley of Frederick, Md., and Kristen McGrew of Grass Valley. He was predeceased by his wife. He is survived by his daughters; sons-in-law Terry O'Malley and Bruce McGrew; and grandchildren Tracy O'Malley, Heather O'Malley, Bryce McGrew and Kenlyn McGrew.
Class of 1966. All rights reserved.