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Longboat Key Thursday, Dec. 19, 2019 6 months ago

Longboat Key crash claims lives of philanthropists Charles and Margery Barancik

Sarasota philanthropists were involved in collision Wednesday night on Gulf of Mexico Drive.
by: Eric Garwood Managing Editor

Philanthropist Charles Barancik was killed Wednesday and his wife Margery died a day later in the hospital following a traffic crash involving a police car on Longboat Key on Wednesday evening. 

The Barancik Foundation, founded by the couple in 2014, is known across the Sarasota area as a generous philanthropic organization that helps fund education, humanitarian causes, arts and culture, the environment, and medical research.

Teri Hansen, CEO of Barancik Foundation, on Thursday morning described the condition of Margery, 83, at Sarasota Memorial Hospital as critical. Thursday evening, the Foundation confirmed on its website that she had died of her injuries.

Sarasota Police, which are investigating the crash, said Charles, 91, was pronounced dead at the scene. Margery was transported by ambulance as a trauma alert, police said.

The Longboat Key Police officer, whose name was not immediately released, sustained a broken foot or leg, Longboat Key Police Chief Pete Cumming said Wednesday night. 

Cumming said his understanding of the crash indicated the officer was driving his marked car southbound behind a fire department vehicle on the way to an emergency call when another car pulled onto Gulf of Mexico Drive, colliding with the police car in the 2100 block. Cumming said the police car struck the other vehicle in the drivers' side. 

The Baranciks lived at the En Provence condominium community in the 2100 block of GMD.

Baranciks leave a legacy of love in the Sarasota area

Traffic in both directions was shut down from about 6 p.m. until the investigation wrapped up around 11:30 p.m. Traffic was routed through Harbourside Drive for the duration of the investigation. 

Hansen, who said she has known the Baranciks for more than 10 years, described Charles as "Energetic, gentle, kind, thoughtful, a real gentleman.''

A message added to The Barancik Foundation's Facebook page on Thursday morning read: "We appreciate your thoughts and prayers at this time. More information to follow." Dozens of personal messages from supporters began filling the page shortly after. 

Later Thursday, the website posted a message saying: "We are grateful for the outpouring of community support as we grieve the loss of Chuck and Margie, who passed one day apart. We thank the wonderful staff at Sarasota Memorial Health Care System for their kind and excellent care."

The Baranciks were married in 1960. Charles began his professional career as a certified public accountant after earning a business administration degree from Northwestern University. Beginning in 1956 and for the next 30 years, he purchased and ran 10 manufacturing companies. 

Following their success and growth, the couple sold interest in the companies and embarked on a path of philanthropy.


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