Ralph Crispino, a lifelong Scranton resident, passed away on Friday, June 11, from complications due to Parkinson's Disease. Those who know him best, however, know that in truth, Ralph died of a broken heart. He was preceded in death this past Jan. 24 by the love of his life and 'rose of his heart,' his beloved wife of 42 years, Mary Lou, and was desperate to be reunited with her.
Born in Scranton on Jan. 19, 1947, son of the late Ralph "Bob" and Mary (Scaccia) Crispino, Ralph graduated from Scranton Technical High School, class of 1966, before making the decision to serve his country immediately following. He proudly served in the United States Marine Corps during the Vietnam War, earning the Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign and the National Defense Service medals prior to his honorable discharge in 1972.
From there Ralph joined his father and brother in the family business, Crispino's Refrigeration & Air Conditioning, and quickly mastered that trade. Customers remember him as a kind and gentle soul who responded to calls around the clock to ensure their businesses ran successfully. Ralph was a member of the Polish National Catholic Church and most notably brought joy to generations of children in his role as the Easter Bunny and Santa's local fill-in. Mary Lou and Ralph married in 1978, which gave Ralph a bonus son in Mary Lou's first born, Edward, affectionately called "Teddy." The family welcomed two more children, Randy and Stacey, and enjoyed a lifetime making happy memories as a family.
Ralph is survived by his loving family, three children, Edward "Teddy" Decker and wife, Stephanie, of Scranton; Randy Crispino and wife, Kira, of Elizabethtown; and Stacey Shrive and husband, Jeff, of Old Forge; eight grandchildren, Madison, Morgan, Sydney and Blake Crispin Decker, Rowan, Helen and Isaiah Crispino, and Tanner Shrive; his siblings, Marie Crispino and partner, Jack Finnerty, of Scranton; Nicholas Crispino, of New York; and Leo Crispino and wife, Helen, of Dalton; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Helene and Steve Kish; brother-in-law, John Vassil and partner, Caroline "Cookie" Payne; and many nieces and nephews.
Preceding Ralph in death were his adoring wife, Mary Lou (Vassil); parents, Ralph "Bob" and Mary (Scaccia) Crispino; brother-in-law and sister in law, Frank and Betty Lou Vassil; sisters-in-law, Beverly Vassil and Mildred Crispino; mother-in-law and father-in-law, Mary and Frank Vassil Sr.
Ralph's children would like to acknowledge and sincerely thank both Ralph's sister, Marie, and granddaughter, Morgan, for their selfless care and devoted love while taking care of Ralph during his illness.
Funeral services are scheduled to begin on Wednesday at 9 a.m. from the Thomas P. Kearney Funeral Home Inc., 517 N. Main St., Old Forge, with a 10 a.m. funeral Mass at St. Stanislaus Polish National Cathedral, 529 E. Locust St., Scranton, to be celebrated by Prime Bishop Dr. Anthony Mikovsky. Burial with military honors by the AMVETS Honor Guard will follow at the parish cemetery.
Family and friends may pay their respects on Tuesday from 4 to 7 p.m. at the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made in Ralph's name to either St. Cats & Dogs Inc., c/o 1900 E. Gibson St., Scranton, PA 18510; or to the Marine Corps League Detachment #304, c/o P.O. Box 1775, Scranton, PA 18505.
Please visit the funeral home's website for directions or to leave an online condolence.