December 8, 1925 ~ May 12, 2020
My daddy, William A. Mattioli, AKA Billy, Bill, Daddy-O, Grampa Bill, Pop-Pop, The Hike Master, The Mixo, Mr. Bill, Mr. Thrifty, born December 8 1925 in Akron, to parents Cesare and Giovannina (Carano) from Carovilli Italy, who preceded him in death as did brother Robert, sister Mary Fugarino, daughter Kimberly Phillips, son-in-law Bill Phillips, and beloved long time companion Janie Adams. He died May 12th.
He was married to Norene Pruner in February 1949 – February 1956 and they had two daughters, Pamela and Kimberly
He is survived by his dear sister Helen Testa, and his daughter Pam Sandels (John)
Granddaughters Jennifer Gonzalez (Carlos), Erin Read (Chris) and Kellie Krajcik (Jerry)
Great-grandchildren Sylvia, Giancarlo, Anabella, Paloma, Carlina, Armando, Alijana and Simone.
Numerous and treasured nieces and nephews, of Mattioli and Testa families. He originated the annual family Memorial Hike and picnic at Virginia Kendall Ledges, wearing his baseball cap and that coach-worthy whistle around his neck. Bill loved with his whole being, and if you knew him, you knew that you were a part of his extended family. He excelled at joking, flirting, and making many life long friends.
He truly enjoyed his profession of many years as a bartender extraordinaire, especially working for his sister Mary at The Glen’s Tavern in Cuyahoga Falls where he was known as “The Mixo”. But above all, his most satisfying was iron work, being a part of building The Coliseum, Y-Bridge and various other local structures, of which he was so proud.
He would want you to know about his yearly attempts to call Sammy Davis Jr. on their shared birthday, 12/08/1925, usually speaking with his secretary, but one year, he spoke to Sammy while he was appearing in Las Vegas. When Sammy was a guest on The Morning Exchange in the early 80’s, Bill was there, standing in line with other audience members waiting to ask questions. When it was Bill’s turn, he reminded Sammy of the many times he spoke with his secretary, and the one time he talked to Sammy! Sammy’s secretary was also at The Morning Exchange that day, smiling and nodding, recalling Bill’s calls every December 8th. Sammy walked toward him, hand outstretched, when Bill said, “I’m Italian, we hug!”, Sammy warmly obliged. The show’s producer sent him three 8 x 10’s of that memorable event. Bill cherished, that hug with his “birthday brother”. If you knew my daddy, you know he was a legend in his own right!
We are grateful for the remarkable caretakers and nurses at Arden Courts of Bath and Crossroads Hospice & Palliative Care, who kept us informed daily of Bill’s condition. There will be a celebration of Bill’s life the moment hugs and kisses are once again safe to share. If you choose to make a charitable donation in Bill’s name, please choose a local animal shelter, or The Doris Day Animal League, he would like that.