Edmund A. DeGasperis, formerly of Harding Ave., Kingston and also Ft. Pierce, FL., died Thursday, April 10, 2008 at his home in Wilmington, DE. He was 86.
He was born in McKee's Rock, PA on May 5, 1921, the son of the late John and Lorraine Organtini DeGasperis. His family settled in Kingston, NY, where he met and married Elaine Sancomb, his wife of 58 years, on October 28, 1945.
During the war years, Ed went to Roosevelt Aviation School and worked for the Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation. There he built and tested the F6-F Hellcat fighter plane used by the US Navy during WWII. He was proud to acknowledge that this plane hung in the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC for many years. For over 32 years, Mr. DeGasperis co-owned and operated the Gov. Clinton Market in Kingston. The "store" was a family business that grew from a small grocery to one of the largest home owned independent grocers in the Hudson Valley. He instilled in others a strong sense of integrity and dedication to hard work through experiences learned in the business. Both at home and in the business world, his word was his bond. He was a humble, honorable man who was dedicated to his family, and spent his life conveying his values of honor and integrity to his children and their children through the examples he set in his own life.
Mr. DeGasperis was a parishioner of St. Joseph's Church and a Third Degree member of the Kingston Council #275 Knights of Columbus. He was also a former member of the Kingston Kiwanis Club and a volunteer for the March of Dimes. Following his retirement, he was involved with selling real estate in Ulster County, New York. With his wife, he traveled the world and captured decades of family memories on film. He enjoyed construction, carpentry and stonework as hobbies, and leaves many examples of his craft in New York and Delaware.
His wife, Elaine died on September 23, 2003. He leaves behind to cherish his memory his two daughters, Sandi DeGasperis of Memphis, TN; Lorraine DeGasperis and her husband, Joseph Schuck of Wilmington, DE and a son, John DeGasperis and his wife Beverly of Willow, NY; two sisters, Rose Contreras of Rochester, NY and Enis Secreto Melnik of Kingston; eight grandchildren, Christopher and Daniel Rourke, Jennifer and John DeGasperis, Catherine Elaine, Thomas Joseph (TJ), Megan and Anna Schuck and a great-granddaughter, Gianna DeGasperis. Many nieces and nephews also survive.
A brother, John A. DeGasperis Jr. and a sister, Norma Provenzano died previously.
The family would like to extend their deepest gratitude to Paul Binnebose, whose devoted care and friendship have blessed Ed's life for the past few years. Paul became his dearest friend who enriched his life with meaningful companionship and joyful experiences. They are also grateful to the compassionate caregivers and staff of Heartland Hospice of Delaware.
Donations in his memory may be made to St. Jude Children's Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105-1942.
Reposing at the Simpson-Gaus Funeral Home, 411 Albany Ave., Kingston on Monday from 2 - 4 & 7 - 9 pm. A funeral procession will form on Tuesday at 9:15 AM from the funeral home. A funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:00 am in St. Jospeh's Church, Kingston. Interment will follow in St. Mary's Cemetery.