Joseph J. D'Amico
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Age 94 of Drexel Hill, died peacefully in his sleep on 1/21/13. He was born February 16, 1918 and was a successful self-made man.He was born to his father Andrew, a shoemaker and Anna D'Amico, a seamstress in Philadelphia. His father was sent from Sicily as a teenager by his family to America to learn the shoemaker trade with other family in America. Joseph worked along side his father as a young man and quickly learned the value of education. He graduated from Overbrook High School in 1936. He was the oldest of 7 children.
As Joe grew older he worked on the Pennsylvania Railroad laying steel track, which he claimed was the hardest job he ever had. Times were difficult and work was hard to find. He would turn over his entire paycheck to his father and mother because of their large family.
Joe worked his way through the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania to earn a degree in business and accounting. While he attended Penn, he managed to get a job at City Hall as a timekeeper, and he would climb all over the scaffolding to check on laborers reporting to work. He loved that job and he thought City Hall was a magnificent building.
He met the love of his life Alice Falotica, a local girl from Philadelphia and they were married in 1944. When he finished Penn, he worked in sales for Goodyear Tire & Rubber, selling shoemaker products to all of the shoemakers in the area, such as Neolite rubber soles. He then joined Prudential Insurance Company to become an insurance broker. At the same time he learned residential real estate sales.
Always desiring to start his own business, he opened a real estate office at 62nd and Catherine Streets in West Philadelphia, which was not far from his father's shoemaker shop at 60th and Chestnut Streets. With the help of his bride Alice, he grew a successful office trading as Crown Realty. Alice and Joe raised 3 children at the time in West Philadelphia, Annette, Joseph, and Andrew. He moved his family to what had become a growing region, Drexel Hill, PA. He started fresh and renamed his real estate and insurance business Ormond Realty, since his office was located at Ormond Avenue and State Road in Drexel Hill. There Joe remained with his family since 1959 until he passed away. Joe retired at age of 66, when his wife Alice died after being married 40 years. Joe worked tirelessly rarely taking a vacation, except to go to the New Jersey shore for his children. His fourth and youngest child Jane took over his real estate business. His oldest daughter Annette went into real estate development. His son Joe, Jr. is a colon surgeon at Christiana Hospital in Delaware and his son Andrew is an attorney in Delaware County, PA. Joe had 9 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren.
Joe loved music and dancing, and was an avid reader; but, most of all was a family man. If Joe was not working, he was with his wife and children and frequently with his brothers and sisters and their families for get togethers. He was the first born and the last to die in his family, a true patriarch and born leader, to whom everyone entrusted their confidences. He was always interested in his grandchildren and great grandchildren. He was in a terrific state of mind up until the day he died. He loved life, and in his own words told his children, "I have no regrets".
He was the beloved husband of the late Helen "Alice" (nee Falotica), loving father of Annette Case (Dean), Dr. Joseph J. D'Amico (Nancy), Andrew J. D'Amico Esq. (Georgiana), and Jane Gallagher (Eddie). He is also survived by his adoring grandchildren Walter "Bill" and Michael Bass, Andrew Jr., Joseph and Theresa D'Amico, Jennifer Fauth, Eddie Jr., Catelyn and Brett Gallagher, and his 6 cherished great grandchildren Nicole, Andrew, Dylan, Joshua, Abigail and Sophia.
He was predeceased by his brothers Frank, John and Andrew D'Amico and his sisters Mary Melzi, Rita Silverman and Jean Furber.
Relatives and friends are invited to his Viewing on Saturday 8:30 a.m.- 9:45 a.m followed by his Funeral Mass 10:00 a.m. at St. Bernadette Church, Bond and Turner Ave, Drexel Hill, PA. 19026. Interment SS. Peter and Paul Cem.
Published in The News Journal on Jan. 24, 2013