Former major league record-holder
'Max' Surkont dies in Fla. at 64
LARGO, Fla. - Matthew C. "Max" Surkont, 64, of 567 Ulmerton Rd., a former Boston Braves pitcher who once owned the major league record for consecutive strikeouts, died Wednesday at home. He was the husband of Jeanne (Hall) Surkont.
In 1953, Surkont pitched eight consecutive strikeouts against the Cincinnati Reds, a record since surpassed by Tom Seaver.
His 21-year baseball career began at the age of 15. His first contract was with the St. Louis Cardinals who sent him to the minor leagues for 12 years. He pitched his first game in the major leagues in 1949 for the Chicago White Sox and then joined the Braves.
He later pitched for the Cardinals, Pittsburgh Pirates and New York Giants. Surkont's best year was in 1953 when he won 11 games and lost 5 with the Milwaukee Braves. He retired from baseball in 1957.
He was the owner of Surkont's Cafe, Pawtucket, for 21 years before retiring in 1984.
Born in Central Falls, a son of the late Bronislaw and Malwina (Bardowska) Surkont, he lived in Pawtucket most of his life before moving to Florida two years ago.
He was recently inducted into the Pawtucket Hall of Fame.
He was a World War II Navy veteran and a member of the Fierlit Korzen Post 79, American Legion of Central Falls and the Walter G. Gatchell Post, 306, VFW of Pawtucket.
Besides his wife, he leaves a daughter, Jill E. Surkong of Largo; three sons, Matthew Surkont Jr. of Maine and Glenn B. Surkont of Pawtucket and Joseph W. Surkont of East Greenwich; a sister, Helena S. Rzepecki of Pawtucket; a brother, Joseph B. Surkont of Wakefield and two grandchildren.
A military funeral will be held Tuesday at 9 a.m. from the Karol A. Romenski & Sons Funeral Home, 342 High St., Central Falls, with a Mass of Christian Burial in St. Joseph's Church, High Street, Central Falls, at 10. Burial will be in the Notre Dame Cemetery, Pawtucket.