SPOKANE, Wash. — Dad passed away peacefully on Sept. 3, 2012.
He was born in Oneonta, to Julius and Mary Speranzi on Dec. 31, 1920. He was fond of telling people that, “Everyone around the world celebrates my birthday.”
Dad accomplished many things during his 91 years. He entered the Army during World War II, served in Korea and spent 24 years in the Air Force, retiring as Senior Master Sergeant.
He managed the Press Club, the Elks Lodge, the Early Birds Club at the Davenport Hotel and was Maitre d’ at the Ridpath Roof during the Expo-74 opening. In addition to the thousands who dined at the places he managed, Dad helped arrange dinners for then President Jimmy Carter, former Speaker of the House Tom Foley and 36 governors. He liked to say, “I shook hands with every one of them.” He handled so many of those V.I.P. dinners that he was given a certificate of achievement from the state by then-Gov. Daniel Evans.
On one occasion, when a fire broke out at the Ridpath, Dad calmly evacuated (without incident) the 45 people dining on “The Roof” while the pianist played, “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes.” (Pop was hailed a hero but denies he earned the title.)
He had an unparalleled passion for golf, played it for 75 years. He looked forward to poker night and was an easy mark because he just couldn’t bluff (sorry, Pop). He was the ‘Godfather” … FBI (full-blooded Italian).
Dad was preceded in death by his loving wife of 50 years, Kathryn; his great-grandson, Michael Wichterman; his brothers, Andy and Joe; and sister, Carolyn.
He is survived by his brother, Tom (Grace) Speranzi; and sister, Ann Briguglio of Oneonta; daughter, Judy (Ron) Shores of Spokane, Wash.; sons, Joe (Patty) Speranzi of Spokane, Wash., and Tom (Susan) Speranzi of Maryland; and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren, who affectionately knew him as, “Tet.”
We’ll miss and think of you often, Pop. God Bless You.
Our family would like to extend a very special ‘Thank You’ to the care givers of Hospice of Spokane for their wonderful and caring support. Donations in Dad’s name can be made out to this wonderful organization.
Viewing will be from noon until 1 p.m. followed by the funeral service on Saturday, Sept. 8, 2012, at 1 p.m. at the funeral home. Interment will follow in Holy Cross Cemetery.
Hennessey Funeral Home, 2203 North Division St., Spokane, WA 99207, is assisting the