Ernest S. LoNano
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1931 - 2013 Ernest Stephen LoNano, the third generation of artisanal interior designers in his family, died February 15, 2013, with his daughters surrounding him.
Ernest was born in 1931 in the Bronx, and he grew up in Tuckahoe, Westchester County, NY. He graduated from Fordham University in 1954, and married the love of his life, Patricia Ann Bergin of San Rafael, CA in 1954.
He joined his family's interior design firm upon graduation. Ernest, like the firm, specialized in 17th and 18th century Colonial American design and reproduction. In the 1940s, after a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation, Ernest's father began the restoration of Colonial Williamsburg; Ernest completed the restoration during the 1950s through the early 1970s. In addition, Ernest designed interiors for private homes, law firms, and offices. He lectured all over the United States on the field of historic interiors. Some of his more famous projects included Hyde Park, the oval office during the Nixon period; Winterthur Museum; Hancock Shaker Village; Mount Vernon; Monticello; the American Wing of the Metropolitan Museum of Art; Carter's Grove Plantation; the Milwaukee Country Club; the University Club; the law offices of Godfrey and Kahn; Foley and Lardner; and many private historic homes in Milwaukee, WI. He had his own furniture line which he retired in 1998.
He was an avid gardener, could recite every baseball statistic known, was a passionate fan of opera, jazz, and dance. He loved his family, animals, and the ocean. He was predeceased by his adored wife, Patricia, who died in 1980.
He is survived by his daughters, Mari, Patricia, Dina and her husband Rob, as well as his sister Vivian Jensen and her husband Dudley, his favorite niece, Nancy Jo Weston and her husband Pete, his brother Francis LoNano, his many friends in Milwaukee, which was like a second home to him, and his loving dogs and cats. We will all greatly miss his sense of humor and his love and support.
Published in The Berkshire Eagle on Feb. 18, 2013