John De Stefano

Memorial Visitation at Funeral Home

4:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Thursday, June 20, 2024
Festa Memorial Funeral Home
111 Union Blvd
Totowa, New Jersey, United States

Memorial Mass

11:00 am
Friday, June 21, 2024
St. Gerard RC Church
West Broadway
Paterson, New Jersey, United States

Obituary of John J De Stefano

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It is with profound sadness that we share the passing of a beloved father John Joseph

De Stefano, who departed from this world on June 17, 2024, at the age of 87 due to kidney failure.

John hailed from a proud Italian family in Paterson, NJ. The oldest of four children, John was a natural athlete who excelled in football, baseball, basketball, hunting, fishing and later in life softball and golf. All who he played with knew of his competitive spirit and love of sports. Especially his brothers, whether they were on the field together, at the dinner table stealing food off of each other's plates, or running from their father's wrath after breaking the bed in their small home on Chadwick Street.

John worked for his father's plumbing business and then joined the Navy at the young age of 17 as a pipefitter. He spoke with great admiration about his father and the time in the Navy. He cherished the friendships he had made. John was an amateur photographer winning contests in magazines that published his work.

As John worked his way up to Chief Plumbing Inspector in Paterson, he belonged to the Sure Shot Hunting Club, The Italian Club, and many rec sports teams, where he made many lifelong friends along the way. John learned from his younger sister Sylvia how to be non-judgmental, a good friend, a companion, and how to be refreshingly uncomplicated. He respected your time and was never late, he was dependable and a generous and thoughtful man who always had his hand in his pocket to pay for a meal or buy anything your kids were selling. John loved sending birthday cards to his sister-in-law to tease her about her cooking. But in the same breath, he would say how amazing her food was.

John was an incredible father who was always there for his daughter. Even though he had divorced from her mother, they remained lifelong friends and raised her together. John taught his daughter all about the importance of family, good sportsmanship, the love of photography and how it is the simple things in life that make you happy. It always amazed her how he would have a joke for everything. He made her laugh more than anyone in her life.

John really shined as a grandfather. He would visit his grandchildren every Wednesday and spend the days in parks, video arcades, in pools, on hikes, babysitting, shopping, the Delaware River, fishing and target shooting, going for icecream, icecream, icecream and lots of wrestling on the couch. When his daughter would ask him what he wanted to do, he would always reply, "Whatever the kids want to do." He was so very proud of both of them. And also he loved his grand-dogs too. The first thing he would do when he arrived was sit and give them their treats.

John is survived by his brothers, his daughter, grandchildren, cousins, good friends, an army of ex-girlfriends, extended family, and loved ones.

A pillar of strength and a beacon of love, his absence leaves a void in our hearts.

To commemorate his remarkable life and the memories we cherish, the family will have:

A Memorial Service to celebrate his life @:

Festa Memorial Funeral Home

111 Union Boulevard Totowa, NJ

Thursday, June 20th at 4pm - 8pm.


A Memorial Mass will take place on:

Friday at 11am

Saint Gerard's Church

501 W Broadway, Paterson, NJ.

We welcome all who knew him and his family to join us in celebrating the life of a man who was loved deeply and will be missed.

Per John's wishes, we ask that in lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial donation to K9s for Warriors as he was in passionate support of their foundation.

Other ways to honor John's life and celebrate the impact he made on the world around him would be: to take a friend to lunch, crack a good dad joke, throw a ball with your kid, make healthy food for your dog, pay attention to politics, enjoy nature, read a good book, take lots of photos of the ones you love, say a prayer, eat ice cream, listen to Frank Sinatra, and give love entirely, eternally, and unconditionally.

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