George Varga died on April 9, 2014, from severe pneumonia at the Adirondack Medical Center at 57 years of age.
George was born in Philadelphia, Pa., on Jan. 4, 1957. He grew up in Scotch Plains, N.J., and moved to Lake Placid at age 13 when his father, Dr. C. Francis Varga, took a job as a pathologist at Adirondack Medical Center in Saranac Lake. He graduated from Lake Placid High School in 1975 and received a B.A. in economics from Middlebury College in 1979. He earned a legal degree from Golden Gate Law School in San Francisco, Calif., in 1983. He pursued legal work for nonprofit agencies, defining his humanitarian desire to help those that "could not help themselves." In the mid '80s, when government funds were cut to the programs he was working for, George became disillusioned with law in general and decided to pursue a new career.
George relocated to Boston and eventually became a chief fundraising executive and operations manager for the Boston-to-New York AIDS bicycle marathon. His success in helping to create a profitable and rewarding experience was highly regarded as a great achievement in fundraising.
George eventually relocated to the Adirondacks with a new-found interest in alternative medicine, specifically studying nutrition and supplements. He started working at Nori's Health Food store in Saranac Lake, where he became well known for the inventive dishes he prepared for lunch.
George also had a great passion for the Adirondacks and was extremely versed in horticulture. This led to many years of architectural landscaping in Florida, Burlington and Lake Placid.
He loved his dogs, Trixie and MaGoo, who were both rescued from abusive owners in Florida. He spent a lot of time helping destitute animals find homes from kill shelters.
George is survived by his father Dr. C. Francis Varga and his mother Anita Varga of Lake Placid. He has four siblings, Dr. Francis Varga of Springfield, Mo., Paul Varga of Philadelphia and Thomas Varga of Irvington. His sister Victoria Varga currently lives in Portland, Maine.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 12 at St. Agnes Church in Lake Placid. The Rev. John Yonkovig will officate. In lieu of flowers or gifts, please contribute to the Lake Placid Animal Hospital, 5673 Cascade Road, Lake Placid, NY 12946. They generously cared for George's dogs during this trying time for the family.
The M.B. Clark Inc. Funeral Home, 2310 Saranac Ave, Lake Placid, NY 12946 is in charge of arrangements. Relatives and friends are invited to "light a candle" and share a memory or leave online condolences at www.mbclarkfuneralhome.com.