James Coccodrilli Sr. of Lake Ariel died Sunday, January 20, 2013, at Moses Taylor Hospital, Scranton. Born in Jessup on July 20, 1918, he was the youngest child of Dominic and Caroline Cacciamani Coccodrilli. The family moved to the South Canaan area when he was a young child. The true love of his life, his high school sweetheart and wife of 65 years, Martha Shaffer Coccodrilli, died in 2006 and he grieved for her every day. Jim was a man of incredible goodness and the embodiment of all that we should aspire to be.
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Educated in the Gravity and Lake Consolidated schools, Jim served as treasurer of Mid Valley Farm Dairy Inc. and delivered milk and dairy products to the residents in the Mid Valley area for 33 years. After the dairy business closed, he worked at Cove Haven Resort before retiring in 1985. He was a member of the St. Thomas More-St. Mary's Parish Community, Lake Ariel.
An ardent Yankees fan, he anxiously awaited the start of spring training and continued to faithfully watch games until season's end. His N.Y. hat was seldom off his head. Jim was also a skilled bowler, continuing the sport until he was one of the oldest active bowlers in the Scranton Times League. He also enjoyed golf, and occasional trips to casinos, but no sport could surpass his passion for poker, which he passed down through the generations as far as his great-grandsons and was happiest when they could gather to play with him.
Surviving are four sons, James Jr., Lake Ariel; Richard (Johanna), Dunmore; Robert (Linda), Sterling; and Gary, Lake Ariel; a daughter-in-law, Margy Coccodrilli, Lake Ariel; and a brother, Dante and his wife Bertha.
He was greatly loved by his eight grandchildren, Jamie Coccodrilli Daugherty, Jason Coccodrilli, Kirsten Coccodrilli, Richard Coccodrilli Jr., Courtney Coccodrilli Sobczak, Jeffrey Coccodrilli, Ryan Coccodrilli and Heather Coccodrilli. Also great-grandchildren, Bonnie, Meagan and Ashley Van Orden, Kayla and Nicholas Coccodrilli, Kendall and Keegan Sobczak, Tucker and Anna Coccodrilli, Morgan and Clare Coccodrilli, Ava Compton; and a great-great-grandson, Aiden Van Orden.
He was predeceased by a daughter-in-law, Geri Coccodrilli; a sister, Helen Casciari; and brothers, John, August, Louis, Edward and Tony.
Anyone attending the funeral is asked to go directly to the church.
A Mass of Christian Burial, celebrated by Rev. Michael Finn, will be held at St. Thomas More Church in Lake Ariel on Friday, January 25 at 9:30 a.m. Burial will be in St. John's Cemetery in Jessup.
Family and friends may call on Thursday from 5 to 8 p.m. in the James Wilson Funeral Home, 143 Gravity Rd., Lake Ariel.
For directions or to send the family an online condolence, please visit www.james wilsonfuneralhome.com.
Published in Scranton Times on Jan. 23, 2013