George Zidik, a retired marine engineer and fan of Maryland thoroughbred racing, died Dec. 27 of cancer at the Gilchrist Center for Hospice Care. The Cockeysville resident was 74.
Born in Lakewood, Ohio, he was a Lakewood High School graduate and was captain of the school's basketball team. He also ran track.
Family members said he spoke six foreign languages: Polish, Russian, Italian, Hungarian, Spanish and French. He went to sea at age 15.
He moved to Baltimore's Northwood neighborhood in 1952. He became a marine engineer for the Calmar Steamship Co., an ore-carrier subsidiary of Bethlehem Steel Corp, and retired about 20 years ago.
Family members said Mr. Zidik followed the Maryland racing circuit and went to tracks daily.
Survivors include his wife of 53 years, the former Letitia M. Tish; two granddaughters; and a great-grandson. His daughter, Georgi Lee Sakalski died in 1966.