Joseph V. Passaro, 101, of Warren, PA., died Wednesday, October 14, 2015 at the John and Orpha Blair Hospice Home after a brief illness. He was born September 29, 1914 in Connellsville, PA., to the late Ciriaco “Jerry” and Michelina Prudente Passaro. Joe was a longtime Warren area resident. He was a 1932 graduate of Connellsville High School and earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Education in 1938 and his Master’s Degree in 1948, both from Duquesne University. He took Doctorate courses from Pennsylvania State University, New York University and Syracuse University.
He started his career at Youngsville High School where he taught Business classes. While there he was Athletic Director and he coached Football, Basketball and Baseball. During World War II, he served in the United States Army beginning in 1943, at Aberdeen Proving Ground, and as Post Sergeant Major at White Sands Proving Grounds. He earned an American Theater Ribbon, Good Conduct Medal, and Victory Medal, and was honorably discharged in 1946. While in the Army he coached and played with ASFTC Football Team.
In 1946 Joe moved to Warren, PA. as a Business teacher at Warren High School. He was also a guidance counselor, an assistant football coach, a Vice Principal prior to becoming Principal. During his long standing term as principal, (from 1954 until 1969) Warren Area High School was ranked among the top high schools in the state. From 1969, until his retirement in 1977, he was the Director of Professional Personnel for the Warren County School District. He served as Secretary Treasurer of Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association for 25 years. Joe was a member of the Pennsylvania Secondary School Principals organization, serving as President in 1970. He was also a member of National Education Association, Pennsylvania State Education Association, Pennsylvania State Retirees, Warren American Legion Post 135, Fraternal Order of the Eagles, Lakewood Rod & Gun Club. He was a Past President and current member of the Warren Kiwanis Club where he founded and served as Chairman of their famous election day Joe Passaro Spaghetti Dinner for over 50 years. He was a Special Olympics volunteer and was a member of Holy Redeemer R.C. Church.
Joe enjoyed carpentry, golf and cooking, was an avid sports fan, especially the Notre Dame and the Penn State Football teams. He had a great sense of humor that was demonstrated during many of his speaking engagements. He is remembered lovingly as a great husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather and friend to his family and many others.
He is survived by his 2 children – T.J. “Tim” Passaro and wife, Lee of St. Joseph, Mich., Jeffrey V. Passaro and wife, Tracy of Warren, PA., 2 Stepchildren – E. Jean Ferry and husband, William of Russell, PA., James W. Heald and wife, Patricia of Apex, N.C.,
3 grandchildren, 2 great grandchildren 4 step grandchildren and 10 step great grandchildren also survive.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his 1st wife of 39 years, Mary G. Olds Passaro whom he married June 9, 1941, his 2nd wife of 28 years, E. Marie Whitten Heald Passaro, 2 Sisters – Mary Salvi and Felicia Passaro.
Friends may call at the Donald E. Lewis Funeral Home, Inc., 304 East Street, Warren, PA., on Thursday, October 22, 2015 from 5 to 8 P.M where a vigil service will be conducted at 7:45. A Mass of Christian Burial will be conducted at Holy Redeemer R.C. Church, 11 Russell St., Warren, PA., on Friday at 10:00 A.M. with Fr. Richard J. Toohey, Pastor of St. Joseph R.C. Church, officiating. Interment will be in Warren County Memorial Park, where full military honors will be conducted by members of the Clarendon/Sheffield V.F.W. funeral detail and the U.S. Army personnel. Those wishing to place memorials may do so through Warren Kiwanis Club, designated to their Welfare Fund, %John Kersey, Treasurer, 208 Liberty Street, Warren, PA., 16365 or Hospice of Warren County, 1 Main Avenue, Warren, PA. 16365.
E –mail condolences may be sent by visiting www.lewisfuneralhomeinc.com
Passaro Family: Please accept our sympathies in your time of loss. My father, Robert McCullough, always enjoyed working with Mr. Passaro in the school district. My mother, Sally, sends her sympathies as well. We always enjoyed going to the spaghetti dinner on Election Day as well.
Jim,Patsy and family. We want to extend our condolences to your family at this time of grief. We met Joe shortly after moving to Warren in the late 80’s and he became a dear friend. We loved he and Marie. Joe always had some sweet words when we would meet. Joe was one of the kindest man I ever met. We hope the family feels the love and prayers of family and friends at this time. We would love to be there to pay our respects but distance doesn’t permit it. God bless you folks.
We offer condolences to the Passaro family. Joe was a model leader at Warren High School; quite an example to follow. I was fortunate to attend that school under his directorship.
I can see him directing the angels now; “Let’s move to first period class.”
Zeno F. Henninger
We are so sorry about the loss of Mr. Passaro. I have many good memories from my
time at the high school under his direction.
We send our sympathy to all his family. God bless.
What a great life! Countless contributions to making the Warren area a better place and a loving husband to my Aunt Marie. Condolences from the entire Albaugh family.
Mr. Passaro was one of the most decent and honorable men that I have ever met. I remember two people lovingly from my high school days in the 1950s and 1960s , Joe Passaro and Christine Heard. God bless you and instead if grieving for a life well lived, let’s celebrate that Joe is now with God and reunited with loved ones.
I would like to send my thoughts and prayers to all of you! Joe was a great man! My dad (Bill Miller) learned so much under Joe’s tutelage when he was Vice- Principal! My family always enjoyed the spaghetti dinners as well. When my husband and I were up home in Warren and my dad needed a project done he would say to my husband ” I don’t have that sort of tool, go down the street and see Joe”. My husband only knew Joe for a short time but he as well thinks the world of him! Especially to Tracy and Jeff ( since I have known you so long) My prayers and condolences are with you!! God Bless!
Cindy Miller Strachan
Jeff and Family, Your Dad hired me in Sept. of 1970 when we moved here from Michigan. He was always so up-beat and pleasant. He was a great inspiration to this community. He will be missed. It was so good to see him at the PASR retirement luncheon in June. Thank you for bringing him, Jeff. Remember all the good times. Love and prayers, Sharie Van Gilder