Joseph Vincent Martinelli, 91, of Laflin, died Sunday at the Veterans Affairs Nursing Home, Wilkes-Barre, following a prolonged illness.
Born in Dupont on July 9, 1922, he was the son of Louis and Anna Iannuzzo Martinelli. He was a graduate of Dupont High School, class of 1940. He was a World War II veteran, having served as a corporal in the U.S. Army.
He was employed at Tobyhanna Army Depot for 18 years prior to retiring. He was also the owner of New Rail Dam Swimming Area Recreation for many years.
He was one of the organizers of the Duryea Little League, as well as the Duryea Junior Football League. He also served as a Boy Scout leader at St. Nicholas Church in Old Forge.
He was an all-around handyman for many years at the Pittston Senior Center, where he and his loving wife met and were married 16 years ago.
Having been certified each year by the state of Pennsylvania, he also taught exercise classes at the senior center, as well as being an active member of the chorus there. He was also a member of the Avoca Community Choir.
He was an avid bowler, having organized a traveling bowling league at the Senior Center and belonged to bowling leagues at Modern Lanes, Exeter, and most recently at the Stanton Lanes, Wilkes-Barre.
He was a lifetime member of the VFW.
He enjoyed life and found happiness through cooking, gardening, quilting, hunting, fishing, spending time with family and eating ice cream!
He was preceded in death by his parents and an infant grandson.
He is survived by his wife, Kathleen (Black) Palum Martinelli; sons, Louis Joseph Martinelli and wife Dobbie, Dunmore; David Martinelli and wife Judy, Duryea; John Martinelli and wife Marianne, Madison Township; daughters Anna Marie Kush, Scranton, and Mari Martinelli, Pittston Township; stepchildren, Barbara (Palum) Walling Shock and husband Jerry, Duryea; Joyce (Palum) Mashinski and husband Bill, Fairfax, Va..; Sharon (Palum) Eroh and husband Ron, Raleigh, N.C.; Bill Palum and companion Mary Kay Berringer, Sterling, Va.; Jim Palum and wife Theresa, Union Hall, Va.; Nancy (Palum) Bono and husband Rod, Raleigh, N.C.; 21 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
Guests may call noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday in St. Maria Goretti's Church in Laflin with a Catholic Mass officiated by Father Gregory Finn immediately following. Final resting place will be Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the VA Hospital Veterans Recreation Center in Wilkes-Barre. Arrangements are by Howell-Lussi Funeral Home, 509 Wyoming Ave., West Pittston.
Howell-Lussi Funeral Home
509 Wyoming Avenue West Pittston, PA 18643
Published in Times Leader on Sept. 3, 2013