Shrewsbury – Mikhail M. Bitar, 76, of Shrewsbury, a former resident of Lebanon and aWorcester Area Business owner, passed away Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2013 in the arms of his family at home after a brief struggle with cancer.
Mikhail was born in Akar, Lebanon, one of seven children of Mtanious and Miriam (Danoui) Bitar. He grew up in Akar, joined the Lebanese army and served Lebanon for the next 20 years as a soldier before retiring. In 1958, he met and married the woman who would be his devoted wife for the next 54 years, Adele (Greige) Bitar.
In 1977, because of the war in Lebanon, Mikhail, in an effort to safeguard his family and give his children a better life, emigrated to the United States with his family and had lived here ever since, returning to Lebanon to visit his family still residing there.
Mikhail was a 20-year Lebanese Army Soldier, retiring and immigrated to the U.S. where he owned and operated several area Getty Gas Stations in Auburn, Cherry Valley and Route 20 in Worcester.
He is survived by his beloved wife, Adele (Greige) Bitar; his six devoted children, Samir Bitar and his wife Janet of Southbridge, Joseph Bitar of Shrewsbury, Raymond Bitar and his wife Melissa of Worcester, Fadia McCarthy and her husband Dennis Lacourse, Martin Bitar and his wife Laura, and Nader Bitar, all of Shrewsbury; 13 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren, whom he loved dearly; three brothers, Wahid Bitar of Worcester, Milad Bitar in Jacksonville, Florida, and Farraj Bitar in Lebanon; two sisters, Sara Wehbe in Lebanon and Badra Ayoub in Jacksonville; and many nieces, nephews, extended family, and friends. A brother, Elias Bitar, predeceased him.
Mikhail was a member of St. George Orthodox Cathedral, and a devoted family man who cherished the family he was blessed with and the friends he had. In life, nothing made Mikhail more proud and happy than to see his family succeed. Family holidays and gatherings were special and always enjoyable.
Friends and relatives are invited to visit with the family during calling hours Friday, Feb. 15, from 5 to 8 p.m., in the MERCADANTE FUNERAL HOME & CHAPEL, 370 Plantation St., Worcester. His funeral service will be held Saturday, Feb. 16, from the funeral home with a service at 9:00 a.m. in St George Orthodox Cathedral, 30 Anna St. Burial will follow in Hope Cemetery.