Vito William “Bill” Murgita, 88, died May 26, 2011, at Penobscot Bay Medical Center.

Born in Rockland on April 13, 1923, he was the son of Vito A. and Maria Gloria Murgita. He was educated in Rockland schools. After leaving school, Bill worked at Van Baalens in Rockland and later for a brief time at Bath Iron Works.

On Jan. 29, 1943, he was inducted into the U.S. Army. He served in the South Pacific, Philippines and Japan, and was actively involved in the Battle of Anguar with the 81st Infantry Wildcat Division.

Upon returning to the States, he met Elinor M. Blood on a blind date, and on Aug. 30, 1946, the couple were married. They made their home in Rockland all their married lives where they raised their family. Mrs. Murgita died Sept. 8, 2000.

After his marriage, for about 10 years Bill worked as a commercial fisherman on several different vessels out of Rockland. He ultimately purchased the Rockland Awning Company, which he operated until his retirement.

He enjoyed golfing and hunting. He was a 50-plus-year member of the Rockland Lodge of Elks No. 1008, and a 60-plus-year member of the Winslow-Holbrook-Merritt American Legion Post No. 1 in Rockland.

Other than his wife, Bill was predeceased by three sisters Anna Sorrent, Rose Stafford and Grace Murgita; and two brothers, John Murgita and Anthony Murgita.

He is survived by two sons, Bruce Murgita and his wife, Donna, of Thomaston and William Murgita of Rockland; his daughter, Cindy Turcotte and her husband, Mark, of Litchfield; his brother, Dominic Murgita of Florida; six grandchildren, Tina, Brian, Aaron, Justin, Cary and Barry; eight great-grandchildren, Christopher, Nicole, Nikia, Zoe, Hali, Austin, Effie and Sierra; and many nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be conducted by the officers of the Rockland Lodge of Elks on Friday, June 3 at 2 p.m. at Burpee, Carpenter & Hutchins Funeral Home, 110 Limerock St. in Rockland. Private interment will follow at Amesbury Hill Cemetery in Rockport.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to either the Winslow-Holbrook-Merritt American Legion Post No. 1, Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 582, Rockland, ME 04841; or The Rockland of Elks No. 1008, Scholarship Fund, P.O. Box 983, Rockland, ME 04841.

To share a memory or story with Vito’s family, visit his guest book at bchfh.com.