Poland – Eugene J. “Gene” Calcagni, 97, of Poland, passed away peacefully on Wednesday morning, March 17, 2021with his loving family by his side.
Gene was born on February 13, 1924, in Smokey Hollow, the son of Italian immigrants Guiseppe and Marianna (Pesa) Calcagni and was a lifelong area resident.
Gene will always be remembered as a patriarch of the family along with being a loving husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, uncle and friend. Anyone who knew Gene knew they could go to him for advice and he would lead them in the right direction. He was such a kind hearted and humble man that was always proud of his family and all of their accomplishments. He was excellent at telling stories and jokes and will be dearly missed by everyone who knew him.
Gene was proud to have grown up on the east side of Youngstown and was a 1942 graduate of East High School. Gene then heard the call of his country and proudly served in the United States Navy beginning in April of 1943 during World War II until Honorably Discharged in April 1946. He earned the rank 3rd Class Petty Officer and was attached to the Amphibious Forces and saw combat in the South Pacific while being stationed on the LSM 30 Naval Ship where he saw combat in the invasion of the Philippines and Okinawa.
Upon returning from military duty, Gene married the love of his life, the former Antonette M. Popio on September 14, 1946 at Immaculate Conception Church and they celebrated over 72 wonderful years of marriage until her passing on August 24, 2019.
Gene began his working career at the James A. Henderson Dealership in Youngstown as a body shop foreman, followed by his 30 year tenure with the Allstate Insurance Company as a Property Claims Manager retiring in 1986.
He was a lifelong, active member of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Basilica where he was an usher, a member and past Vice President of the Vestibule Club, and belonged to the Senior Citizens Group. Gene was on the Festival Committee from its inception in 1999 and they honored him in 2013 as the Italian American Man of the Year. Gene was also a member of the ITAM Post 3, National LSM Association, PT Boat Association, the LST Association, and the Youngstown Morra League, being inducted into their Hall of Fame for his outstanding leadership as a Padrone and was a feared player by all because he almost always won the point.
Gene had many passions throughout his life. He enjoyed vacationing during the summers at Myrtle Beach and Geneva On-the-Lake, fishing with his children and grandchildren, attending the annual family picnics, and playing cards. He especially loved his fishing trips to Canada in May of each year. Gene also enjoyed planting his garden, especially his Swiss chard. He had a passion for sports and loved rooting on his favorite teams Youngstown State University, The Ohio State University and all the Cleveland teams: Browns, Indians and Cavaliers.
Gene leaves behind to hold onto his memories, his beloved daughter Jean M. (Gene) Wargo of New Middletown, daughter-in-law Cyndi Calcagni of Murrells Inlet, South Carolina, five grandchildren Chris (Kerri) Wargo, Andrea (Joe) Simpson, Deana (Stephen) Davis, J. Michael (Brittany) Calcagni, and Anthony (Kelly) Calcagni, ten great-grandchildren, Logan and Carolyn Stewart, Jonah and John Simpson, Eden Davis, Gino, Dominic, Brody, Braden and Brynlee Calcagni, his sister, Angie DeTunno, to whom he was very close, along with many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
Besides his parents and wife, Gene was preceded in death by infant son, Joseph Anthony Calcagni, and son, Joseph Calcagni, who passed away October 1, 2019, granddaughter Brittany Calcagni, and brother Arthur Calcagni.
Family and friends may pay their respects on Sunday, March 21, 2021 from 3:00 pm until 5:00 pm at Rossi & Santucci Funeral Home, 4221 Market Street, Boardman.
Everyone is invited to the Mass of Christian Burial held on Monday morning, March 22, 2021at 10:00 am at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Basilica, 343 Via Mount Carmel, Youngstown with the Very Rev. Msgr. Michael J. Cariglio officiating. Please meet directly at the church.
The family, funeral home and church will be practicing social distancing and proper health protocols. As a social courtesy, please wear a mask or facial covering. If you are unable to attend, the family understands and acknowledges your thoughts and prayers as a tribute to Gene.
Burial will take place next to his beloved wife, Antonette, at Calvary Cemetery, Youngstown, with military honors provided for Gene by the great men of the Ellsworth VFW.
Material contributions can be made in Gene’s name to Our Lady of Mount Carmel Basilica, 343 Via Mount Carmel, Youngstown, Ohio 44505.
Family and friends may visit www.rossisantuccifh.com. to view this obituary, sign the guest book and send condolences to Gene’s family.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Eugene J. "Gene" Calcagni, please visit our floral store.
Our Lady of Mount Carmel Basilica
343 Via Mt. Carmel, Youngstown OH 44505