IRWIN, Gene, passed away on April 24, 2013 in Tucson, Arizona after bravely fighting cancer and emphysema for several years. He was born and raised in Tucson attending Flowing Wells schools. He graduated in 1961 from Farmington High School in Farmington, NM where his father was transferred in 1958. Gene served in the U.S. Army as a Military Policeman stationed in Germany during the Vietnam War. He spent his professional life working for United Airlines on the ground crew out of LAX until retiring in 2004. He was also owner and driver of a sprint car racing in California and Arizona. Before moving to Farmington he spent time at Washington Junior High where he set the shot put record through strength and sheer determination even though he was the smallest member of the team. He then became an active member of sports at Farmington High School. Gene was preceded in death by his father, Lual "Lu" Irwin in 1971; his mother, Faun in 1988 and his older brother, Sonny in 1992 as well as his maternal and paternal grandparents. He is survived by sisters, Sherry Irwin McElhiney, Jim, of Tucson and Tanni Irwin Bishop, Doug, of Farmington, NM; numerous nieces, nephews and extended family. He is also survived by his stepdaughter, Melissa Nichols of Lake Havasu, AZ. It is pointless to list why people loved and liked him and enjoyed his company, you just did! He was blessed with a wonderful quick wit, sense of humor and generous heart. Funeral Service will be at 2:00 p.m., Saturday, April 27, 2013 with Visitation one hour prior at ADAIR FUNERAL HOMES, Avalon Chapel, 8090 N. Northern Ave. at Magee. Interment will be private.
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