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Well-Known Industry Figure Gary Polkow Passes Away

Gary Alan Polkow died peacefully Friday, May 5, 2018, at UC Health Hospital in Denver. For 9 weeks, he bravely battled a rare auto-immune disease called Wegeners. During that time, he was surrounded by his loving family and newly found medical friends.

Gary was born Oct 6, 1952 in Flint, Michigan, second son of Eileen Marie Polkow and William Christian Polkow. He married Sheila Marie Doucette on March 14, 1992 in West Warwick, Rhode Island.

Gary is survived by his loving wife of 26 years, son Michael Christian Polkow of Colorado, mother Eileen Polkow of Georgia, brother Steve and wife Yvonne Polkow of Washington State, and brother Jon Polkow of Colorado, and mother-in-law Mary Lou Doucette of Maine; his In-laws: Bernadette and Dennis Gratto, Mary Lou and Steve Twomey, Joseph Doucette, Stephen and Crissy Doucette, Therese and Tim Stepanek, and Paula and Mike Orie;
his 28 Nephews and Nieces: Sonora, Ferron, Lilly, Kael, and Dylan Polkow, Therese and Chris Keneagy, Bill, Pia, Christopher, Sarah, Sean, Santina, and Kerry Twomey, Tim and Kathleen Moore, Jackie, Joseph, Monique, Marielle, Nicole, and Anthony Doucette, Tim, Katie, Kirsten, and Sean Stepanek, and Clancy and Sadie Orie; his 9 Great-Nephews and Nieces: Freya Polkow, William and Oliver Keneagy, Meredith, James, Mallory, and Noah Twomey, and Caroline and Steven Moore.

He is also survived by best friend Xavier Chickering, as an honorable mention.

Gary was preceded in death by his Father, William Christian Polkow and Father-in-law, Joseph James Doucette.

Gary graduated from Masconomet Regional High School in Boxford, MA in 1970, where he participated in football and track. He played drums and the flute.

Gary graduated Cum Laude from Boston University in 1976 with a B.S. in business. He did post graduate work at Babson College with a concentration in finance.

Over the years, Gary achieved success in sales, marketing, manufacturing and executive management of small to medium sized companies, large corporations and as a self-employed entrepreneur. He acquired a wide range of skills focusing on start-ups, to turn-arounds, to growing already healthy businesses.

Upon graduation, he started his career at Texas Instruments. From 1976-1979 he worked there as a manufacturing foreman and earned the reputation as someone who could get things done. From there, his status as a businessman only grew. From 1979-1983 he worked in a number of positions at Fenwal Incorporated as a product manager, special product manager, and commercial controls manager. From 1984-1987 he worked at Elmwood Sensors, directing the Marketing and Sales program. From 1987-1995 he worked as President running the following companies: Hanson Industries, Brush Fuses/Connectron, Clarostat/Senisys, and Polkow Associates. His track record was amazing.  He was recruited to increase sales or turn around product lines in areas that had been deemed irreparable and at every single company he increased profits and sales from 10 to 500% without fail. While some people might see it as him ‘working his magic’, his family knew that it was his strong work ethic, his innate talent for business and an incredibly gifted mind for numbers. Few and far between is a businessman more talented than Gary.

His crowning achievement came in the form of Innovative Scuba Concepts, a diving manufacturing company that became one of the leading producers of scuba equipment in the global markets. The business was started by his brother and father, Jon and Bill Polkow. Gary was brought on in 1995 as operating Co-owner and President of ISC for 21 years from 1995 to 2016 until his retirement in April. He marketed and expanded the business into a leading international force that had connections from Hong Kong to Mexico. Gary was a capitalist through and through. He continued his love of business and finance into his short lived retirement through a number of real estate investment properties that continue to provide a source of income to his family.

Along with his great sense of humor, brilliant mind and strong work ethic, he was a loyal and devoted family man, son and brother. Gary touched many lives, will be greatly missed and fondly remembered by everyone who knew him.

To contact the family, please send an email here: spolkow@erashields.com