PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA - Leonardo Tarantino, age 73, passed away peacefully in his sleep on Monday, March 4, 2013, at the Delaware Valley Veterans Home in Philadelphia, PA.
He is survived by Margaret Tarantino and their three daughters Donna Tarantino-Loyle, Denise Tarantino, Colleen Tarantino-Utter and husband, Alan; their granddaughters Abigail and Mackenzie Utter; and many nieces, nephews, and extended family.
Born on September 20, 1939, in Newark, NJ to the late Salvatore and Rose Tarantino, Leonardo was the youngest of three boys. Brothers Anthony and Frank Tarantino are both preceded in death. Leonardo, who was affectionately known as Lenny or Leo, spent his childhood in the North Ward Section of Newark, a quintessential Italian neighborhood, where he played stickball with his childhood friends. From 1959 to 1965, He served in the U.S. Marine Corp, and was a strong supporter for the men and women who served our country.
After serving his country, Lenny labored several years in the transportation industry including McLean Trucking Company in Parsippany, NJ, working as an OS & D Manager. He found his professional calling however as co-owner and proprietor of Tarantino s Country Corner Deli in Alpha, New Jersey, where he catered events with homemade Italian delicacies, preparing lunches for the locals, as well as making hoagies for local charity events.
Lenny was a long-time resident of Green Township, NJ, and later in Pipersville, and Philadelphia, PA.
Lenny was born hard-wired with an inquisitive mind, fascinated by life s beautiful treasures. As a young man, he learned to scuba dive and spent summers exploring the depths of the Jersey coast. He fell in love with the Shore, and shared this passion with his family for many a summer to come on LBI, Seaside and Island State Park.
Lenny was an indiscriminate music lover, although he had a biased ear for the iconic songs of Frank Sinatra, as well as the magical strums of legendary guitarists from Chet Atkins to Esteban. He was a self-taught man, from learning how to play the guitar and entertaining his young daughters to the soothing sounds of classical and traditional Italian love songs, to learning how to ride horses and developing a fondness for swinging a polo mallet in the yard on Sunday afternoons.
Lenny was a people s man and loved the company of all walks of life. He enjoyed socializing on any occasion, but especially the coming together of close friends and family during hearty Sunday night Italian dinners, where he shared in great detail his wine-making skills to the delight and frustration to anyone who would listen.
Throughout his full life, Lenny was an inspiration. He was a man s man yet had the insight and fortitude to show another kind of strength his warmth, care, and love for others. Lenny was a role model of kindness and unconditional love, touching each and every soul he came across with acts of purpose and words of care. A humble man, he played many roles, from father to uncle, from grandfather to friend, imparting his philosophical viewpoints, time-tested wisdom, and hard-earned life lessons to many; all the while finding his own special way to connect everything to the eternal importance of family and to endeavor to find the strength to be kind.
The family of Leonardo Tarantino expresses its gratitude to the nurses, doctors, and friends at Delaware Valley Veterans Home as well as the surrounding Philadelphia hospitals, and especially Dr. Ronny Antelo and Dr. Martin Mersky, for their support, guidance, and love for Lenny over the past decade.
A graveside service will be held on Saturday, March 9th at Glendale Cemetery, 28 Hoover Ave, Bloomfield, NJ, starting at 11.00 AM.
Cremation services were private.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Wounded Warrior Family Support Organization in honor of Leonardo Tarantino. www.razoo.com/story/In-Memory-Of-Leonardo-Tarantino
Arrangements by Varcoe-Thomas Funeral Home, Doylestown, PA
To view obituary and send condolences visit www.varcoethomasfuneralhome.com