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Roy A DePetro

9/15/2017


Roy De Petro, age 86, of Wayne passed peacefully at home surrounded by his family on Friday, September 15, 2017.

Roy was born in Paterson to Agostino and Edith (née Credaro) De Petro and was raised in the Riverside Section. When Roy was twelve, the family moved to Fairlawn, where he became a standout football player for Fairlawn High, graduating with the Class of 1948. He continued his education and football career at Upsala College in East Orange, NJ, graduating with a degree in Business Economics in 1953.

After college, he served in the US Air Force in Texas and California. After his military service, Roy obtained his real estate license and joined his Uncle Tony’s firm Krugman & DePetro Realty in Clifton. Roy eventually found his niche in in the commercial and industrial real estate market, where he forged a prestigious career, spanning over fifty years. While at Krugman and De Petro, Roy met the late Saul Weinberg. Together, they founded Weinberg & DePetro in a small office in Wayne. The business expanded and they built a new headquarters in Little Falls, where they continued to grow for many years, building successful sales teams and bringing on a third partner, the late Raymond Tumminello. Roy and Ray would eventually found DePetro-Tumminello Realty Group together, which eventually became RA DePetro Realty Group upon the passing of his longtime partner. Proud of his accomplishments, Roy enjoyed taking drives with his children and grandchildren to show them what he had built.

In honor of his long career in the industry, Roy was granted Realtor Emeritus status. Throughout his career, he belonged to several industry-related organizations, including the Passaic County Board of Realtors and the Industrial Office Real Estate Brokers Association (IOREBA), where he organized and played tennis in their annual tennis and golf outings for many years. He was a long-time and dedicated member of the Wayne Rotary Club, always living the mission of service above self and instilling a similar sense of social responsibility in his children. Roy also embraced Rotary’s mission to promote international exchanges, supporting his daughter and granddaughter’s European exchange years and hosting several exchange students in his home. Roy was also a member of the UNICO Club in Wayne, serving as President of the Wayne chapter and a term as the UNICO National District Governor.

A loving husband, father and grandfather, Roy met his wife Judy on a blind date. They were set up by Judy’s sister, and as the story goes, Roy had tickets to a baseball game and asked Judy if she wanted to go with him. Judy, who is now a baseball fan, was not amused at the time and suggested that they find another day. However, Roy must have seen something special in her, because he gave up those baseball tickets to take Judy out on a romantic date. (Some say that was the last time he gave up tickets to a sporting event.) As was the custom of the day, Roy went to Judy’s home to meet the family. Judy’s mom Mae said, “Watch out for him…he looks like a wise guy.” The stars aligned, and Roy proposed marriage to Judy, after only three months, on the front porch of her family’s home in Ridgewood. They were married on October 25, 1958 at Saint John’s Cathedral in Paterson by Fr. James Murray and honeymooned in Miami Beach, Florida. Fifty-nine years, five children and six grandchildren later, Roy never regretted giving up those tickets to the game, and Mae loved him as her own son.

Roy will be remembered as a vivacious, intelligent man who loved life and took advantage of all that life had to offer. A gourmet to the end, he loved fine food and wine! In fact, Roy was a connoisseur of the double-cut veal chop, and any waiter who brought him a veal chop that was not perfectly rare would never forget the wrath of Roy! With three other couples who all shared autumn anniversaries, Roy and Judy formed the Knife and Fork Society- where they would celebrate their mutual passion for travel, food and wine.

Roy was also a sports fanatic and loved tennis, coached basketball and baseball, and sideline coached all of his kids and grandchildren’s sporting events. An avid supporter of the NY Giants, NY Mets and NY Nets, he remained faithful to his teams both in good times and bad. Always resourceful, Roy enjoyed many trips to the US Open and even negotiated a deal to sit front and center with the center court cameraman for the whole tournament over many years. Many will remember Roy’s passion for tennis, tennis, tennis. Always demanding the best and using his business savvy to find a good work-life balance, Roy built an indoor tennis club, the Willowbrook Racquet Club, in Wayne when, at the time, nothing met his standards. He eventually became an early bird tennis player for many years at both the Clifton Racquet Club and Tiger Racquet Club in Fairfield, where his children would often join him and the gang in the early morning hours.

His children will tell you that he was always home for dinner and that he never missed their sporting events. Roy could always be heard sharing stories of all his children’s successes throughout the years. He was especially proud of his son Steven’s stellar wrestling career, which included matches all across the United States up to his recognition as a US Olympic team prospect. His children remember him making great breakfasts, and Judy remembers the fact that he never cleaned up after himself. Roy and Judy loved to travel, as long as it was to where Roy wanted to go, which meant some place with tennis courts and good restaurants. Aside from numerous trips within the US, they travelled extensively throughout the Caribbean and to many countries in Europe.

A true Renaissance man, Roy loved and appreciated music and the arts. He took voice lessons for over fifty years, always filled the house with his wonderful piano playing and singing before dinner, and loved going to the opera and Broadway musicals. His children also remember wonderful family holidays, especially Christmas, where Roy would film them coming out on Christmas morning in matching PJs to see the abundance of gifts under the tree. Much to his children’s dismay, Roy and Judy continued this tradition well into their young adulthoods. He also loved to garden to the very end, planting his last flowers in his yard in May of this year.

Roy was the loving husband of Judy (née D’Annunzio) De Petro; devoted father of Cindy Saypol and her husband Bob of Wayne, Lori Dhuyvetter and her husband Rick of Wayne, Steven De Petro and his wife Mona of Carlsbad, CA, Barbara Bricoli and her husband Stefano of Cedar Grove, and Kristen Livshin and her husband Michael “Nem” of Geneva, Switzerland; he was the cherished grandfather of Alex Bricoli, Cristina Bricoli, Gabrielle De Petro, Christopher De Petro, Madison Saypol, and Maximilian Livshin and step grandchildren Scott Saypol and Ariel Saypol; much loved brother to JoAnn De Petro of Oakland, CA, the late Gregory De Petro and the late Sondra Campana; and adored uncle to many nieces and nephews.

Friends may visit with the family at the Vander May Wayne Colonial Funeral Home, 567 Ratzer Road, Wayne, on Wednesday, September 20, 2017 from 4-8 PM.  A funeral service will be held at 10:30 AM on Thursday, September 21, 2017 at the funeral home.  Entombment will follow in the mausoleum at the Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Totowa.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Roy’s memory to the Foundation for the Handicapped or St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital.

Guest Book

9/18/2017

We are deeply sadden by the passing of Roy, whom we always loved him for the person and friend he was. We will pray for him, and we will pray that some day we will all meet again where the Lord has promised us. Rest in Peace our dear friend !

Joseph & Lorraine Scarane & Family

9/18/2017

So sorry my "US dad" left us. It is always too soon to say goodbye to somebody we love. My heart is with you all and I send you love out of Belgium. We have now a new angel in the sky.

Valerie

9/19/2017

MY prayers and thoughts to Judy and all-Roy was a great friend of mine for over 30 years-he helped me learn through his example of hard work,integrity,love of his family,and never say die attitude.He was a constant positive presence in my life and I will always cherish our many conversations -(yes-even the ones we differed on)-Rest in peace my friend-every forehand and backhand a winner-just like you

Gloria Barbone

9/20/2017

Roy was always ready to help others through his Rotary service, and other charitable organizations. So many people will miss him. RIP. Ken

Ken Gold

9/20/2017

Great loss to the Bullens Ave. gang. My thoughts are with Mrs. DePetro and the family.

Darren & Gayle McDonald

9/20/2017

Very sad to hear the news. You are in my thoughts and prayers at this very sad time.

Marcia Akre

9/20/2017

I will forever be grateful for my good friend, Roy. He was a wonderful part of my business life (through Tennis) as well as my personal life. I enjoyed hearing his proud stories about his family and appreciated his sincere advice and never waivering loyalty....Roy will remain in my thoughts always...I offer my heartfelt condolences to Judy and his family.

Peggie Tanis

9/25/2017

So sorry for your loss! I have many great memories that will remain with me always. A beautifully written obituary. God Bless! Anthony Campana and family

Anthony Campana

10/4/2017

So sorry to all of the DePetro's for your loss. Your Dad was a very good man. It was indeed a very tough week for Bullens Ave. The Gaffney's will keep all of you in our thoughts and prayers. God Bless

Ted Gaffney


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