John Desiderio June 7, 1925 - July 3, 2022
My dad John Desiderio was born on Spring Street in New York to his parents Jenny and Anthony Desiderio on June 7, 1925. His mom demanded he be born in his grandmothers house. The mid wife didn’t even speak English and that is how he ended up with the name Giovani. Always a bone of contention with him since he always went by John. His grandson Tony affectionately dubbed him Poppa Gio. My dad was in the army and the merchant marines during World War II.
Losing my Dad is one of the most difficult things I have gone through. Having to watch a parent go through this process is filled with pain and anguish. As I am sitting here today, I realize how fortunate I was to have him as my Father. There are no words to express his influence in my life. It is through his example that I learned to be the woman that I am today. My father was hardworking, strong, loving, and gentle. He loved his family and was deeply devoted to my mom myself and my 2 brothers.
When I was young, My dad seemed like he was always working. He would work his regular job at Lionel Trains and then would work all of these part time jobs to give us the best life. He was a man ahead of his time. He was working on IBM main frames before we even knew what computers were. I didn't realize it then, but one of the biggest lessons I learned from my Dad - the value of hard work. He woke up everyday and went to work. I could count on one hand how many times my dad took off sick. He truly believed that if you worked hard, treated people right, and with a little luck from God, you could have a good Life.
My dad was everybody’s pop. When my children were in school and it was grandparents day he would always step in for all their friends whose grandparents couldn’t be there. Going through his pictures I came across so many extra grandchildren and I had to smile.
My dad was an uncanny story teller. I could sit and listen to him tell me stories of his childhood all day long. One thing he would always complain about was how they really messed up his nose taking bandages off by mistake. I always thought his nose was perfect. As he was loosing weight I began to see - oh is this the nose he means. It’s how my nose was before I had it fixed and I also saw my brothers nose. It gave me comfort somehow. He had life long friendships and he would tell me stories of Al, Simon and Sal. You would feel like you were in the ball park when he would tell his stories of how as teens they ran a business. He would tell me stories about my grandmother and aunt making bread and him running to the baker in the cellar, who would bake the loaves. This master story teller would have you salivating you could almost taste that bread. His stories about his antics with his brothers could always make me laugh. My grandpa who’s friend couldn’t see but had a motorcycle and my grandpa would drive from the side car. I lost my grandpa when I was 5 and my dad made sure to make him a real and vibrant person who I knew through him.You can love someone so much but you can never love them as much as you can miss them. It doesn’t take long to realize that. You never know when that last real conversation is going to be so you have to make sure to savor them all.
My father is gone and the world has lost an extraordinary brave and wonderful man and we his family and you his friends have lost an absolute hero.
He showed strength and love right up until his last days with us. He waited till the blinds were open, the squirrels, birds and deer had food my daughter was by my side and his hand was in mine. I hope that one day, when I die, my children can look back, tell funny stories about me, and talk about how I loved them. Then, like my father, I will have led a complete life. I will wear my memories proudly dad, my true friend, my mentor and I know my love will reach you in heaven until we meet again.
My dad wanted no fuss, no traditional service just to be laid to rest with my mom, my one brother and my grandparents. He told my nephew my mom would be his greeter. Actually I’m sure there’s a line of greeters as he is welcomed home with his Lord. He was predeceased by his brothers Robert and Leonard, his sister Agnes, his wife Patrician 2nd wife Doris Harris Desiderio, and two sons John and Richard. He is survived by his daughter Nancy, sister-in-law Millie Desiderio his grandchildren Gina Desiderio Edmison, Amy Desiderio Wolf, Tony Desiderio, Nicole DeMarinis McInnis, Jessica DeMarinis Smyk, Brandon Klumpp, Alexis Desiderio Chopak and all his nieces and nephews. He has 11 great grandchildren and one on the way who were the light of his life. He will be laid to rest at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in East Hanover, NJ beside his wife Patrician and son Richard on August 6, 2022 at 11:00.