Rocco Morrongiello, 95, passed away on September 10th, 2021 in his son’s home and surrounded by his loving family, following a short illness. Rocco was a resident of Shadow Lake Village, Red Bank, NJ, where he lived for almost 30 years with his beloved life partner, Barbara Fox, who predeceased him in 2017. He lived in Hazlet, NJ, with his cherished wife of 40 years, Dorothy (Di Pippo), and their three children, until Dottie’s passing in 1990. His son, Anthony Morrongiello passed away in 1994. Surviving is his daughter, Dr. Barbara Morrongiello and her husband (Benjamin Gottlieb) of Guelph, Canada, and his son Rocco Morrongiello and his wife (Jennifer Cory) of Interlaken, NJ. Rocco is also survived by his dear friend and identical twin brother, John Morrongiello (and his wife Louise) of Toms River, NJ, and his treasured grandsons: Daniel Robson (and his wife Angela) of London, UK; Michael Morrongiello of Philadelphia, PA; Grant Robson (and his wife Alicja) of Paris, FR; Austin Morrongiello of Asbury Park, NJ; and Avery Gottlieb (and his partner Jordan) of Ottawa, CA, whom he considered to be the joys of his life. He also leaves behind many adored nieces and nephews.
Rocco grew up on 6th Street in what is now called the Park Slope section of Brooklyn, where he lived with his parents and four siblings: Sal, Joe, Millie & John. His neighborhood was made up of extended family included aunts, uncles, cousins, and his lifelong friends, The Castellanes, who were every bit as much his brothers and sisters. Rocco was a WWII Veteran, serving in the US Navy in the South Pacific from 1944-46. He married his sweetheart, Dottie, in 1950 and embarked on a career in logistics where he became a terminal manager with Associated Transport and regional manager at Carolina Freight. Rocco served as a trustee on The Welfare Pension Fund for the Mid-Jersey Trucking Industry Local 701, where his wisdom and professional acumen were a valued asset from the time of his retirement until his passing, a period of more than 35 years. A natural athlete, Rocco became an avid golfer following his retirement, often “scoring his age” and going on to win two club championships, including one at the age 90. He was even known to hit a few holes-in-one.
While Rocco suffered his share of trials and losses he never wavered in his love of life. He truly savored every moment and enjoyed nothing better than a round of golf or spending time with family and friends. Rocco was an incredibly engaging man, always ready with a story and to share a laugh. He had a beautiful smile and a heart to match. He often referred to himself as the luckiest man he knew to have shared his life with two wonderful women and to have a family he loved so much.
To Rocco’s neighbors, friends, golf and bowling partners both at Shadow Lake Village and in his winter residence at Pine Ridge in Palm Harbor, Florida, we are forever grateful for the companionship and sense of community you brought to his life, particularly after the passing of his dear Bobbie. Your kindness and caring buoyed him during difficult times, and your friendship gave him something to look forward to every day. Dinners, church dates, card games, social visits, and of course golfing, these were the simple yet meaningful pleasures that enriched his life over the past few years.
Rocco was a vital part of our family. His impact on those he loved, particularly his grandsons, was significant, and so too is his passing. Twenty-four hours before he died, with a glass of red wine raised in a toast he said “Here’s to life and to all who helped to make it so great.” So, to all of you who shared a laugh, played a hand of poker or round of golf, listened to a story, or just made him smile, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts! And to our beloved Poppi/Dad/Rocco, we will never, ever forget you.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to St. Anthony of Padua Church, 121 Bridge Avenue, Red Bank, NJ 07701. The family invites you to leave a letter of condolence/remembrance through the Tribute/Guestbook Link on the damianofuneralhome.com website.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Rocco Morrongiello, please visit our floral store.
St. Anthony of Padua Church
121 Bridge Avenue, Red Bank NJ 07701