Stanley W. Ploszaj, 97, of Westbrook, passed away on Friday, October 28, 2022, at Middlesex Hospital. Born in New Britain and raised in Hartford, Stanley was the beloved son of the late Joseph and Katherine (Bilas) Ploszaj. As a young boy, he attended St. Cyril & Methodius School and later graduated from Bulkeley High School in 1942. Stanley proudly enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps shortly after graduation and following completion of basic military training from the famed Parris Island Recruit Depot, Stanley trained and served as an aerial gunner. From 1943-1945, he flew 100 missions in support of the Allied effort during World War II. Stanley operated largely between Guadalcanal and the Philippines as a gunner/pilot, targeting ships, tankers, and cargo, and clearing out land for ground troops. In August 1945, he was honorably discharged and returned home to Connecticut, where he immediately united with the love of his life and childhood sweetheart—Anne Maselek. Together, they began a beautiful life and raised a wonderful family in Westbrook that lasted over 50 years until her death in 1998. Stanley was a man of many talents and abilities. As a skilled and meticulous craftsman with his hands, he worked as a builder and operated his own general contracting business for many years. Among his many projects was the construction of the family home in Westbrook in 1960 where he lived until his death. A lifelong gifted athlete, he pursued a baseball career in the minor leagues after the war, playing with the Red Sox organization in the Carolinas and Alabama. His athleticism remained strong even into his twilight years; he played softball regularly into his 80s and enjoyed golfing until age 96! Light and nimble on his feet, Stanley was a wonderful ballroom and polka dancer—with Anne as his favorite partner—and he occasionally liked to try his luck at the casinos. Stanley and Anne both loved to travel and enjoyed taking their daughters on many family trips to Florida which included beautiful beach vacations and the opportunity to see baseball professionals during spring training. He and his daughters were regulars at countless games at Yankee Stadium, Fenway Park, and the Polo Grounds in New York to see his favorite baseball teams. Stanley was the quintessential family man and loved to support his local community by staying involved in various organizations. He was a lifetime member of the Marine Corps League, Thames River Detachment #1334, and the VFW. Stanley was a faithful Catholic his entire life and continued to support the church as a parishioner of St. Mark the Evangelist Church in Westbrook, member of the Knights of Columbus, and an active member of the South Catholic Father’s Club. He lived a life full of adventure, accomplishment and—most importantly—love. He loved his friends, his fellow veterans, his church brothers and sisters, his neighbors, and, most of all, his beautiful, growing family. Stanley was truly a gem and a blessing to all who knew him, and he will be greatly missed and forever remembered. Stanley is survived by his three loving daughters, Cathy Cancellieri, Betti Franklin and Carol Ploszaj; adored granddaughters, Diana Gascon and her husband, Phil, Silvia Cancellieri-Adams and her husband Jason, Valerie Cancellieri, Monica Franklin, and Aaron Vaden-Youmans; cherished great-grandchildren, Deacon, Landon, Isla, and Ori; and many beloved cousins, nieces, nephews, and friends. In addition to his parents, Stanley was predeceased by his wife, Anne (Maselek) Ploszaj; brothers, Joseph and Walter Ploszaj; sisters, Mary Kuszaj and Sofie Ploszaj; brother-in-law, Henry Maselek; and sons-in-law, Salvatore Cancellieri and Craig Franklin. Stanley’s family will receive friends from 1-3PM on Sunday, November 6, 2022, at the Robinson, Wright & Weymer Funeral Home, 34 Main St., Centerbrook, CT 06409. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11AM on Monday, November 7 at St. Mark the Evangelist Church, 222 McVeagh Road, Westbrook, CT 06498. Military honors will follow the service at the church and guests are kindly asked to go directly to church on Monday morning. Burial arrangements will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations in Stanley’s memory may be made to the Marine Corps League, Thames River Detachment #1334, P.O. Box 462, Uncasville, CT 06382 or to St. Mark the Evangelist Church. To share a memory of Stanley or condolence message with his family, please visit www.rwwfh.com.