Gabriel John Fedele, 90, died peacefully at home on February 26.
A new year’s baby, born January 1,1921, in Utica, NY, Gabriel was the oldest son of Steve Fedele and Angeline Giannovi Fedele of Minturno, Italy. Early in life, a friend taught him to box, which he claimed kept him “off the street.” As he developed skill as a Golden Glove boxer, he quickly earned the nickname “Rocky.”
He grew up in the city and was a member of the Civilian Conservation Corp before joining the Marine Corp in 1940. He was proud of his 30 years of military service and earned many commendations during his tenure, while surviving WW II, Korea, and Vietnam.
While on a peacetime assignment running the Marine post in Tripoli, Libya, he met his future wife, Madeline Gartin. She was a personnel officer with the State Department, and they were married in Libya in 1960. He retired from active duty as a master gunnery sergeant in 1968, and the family moved to Manassas, Virginia to raise their daughter and commute to his job as a Capitol Hill police officer.
They made many dear friends in Virginia and were members of Trinity Episcopal Church for 26 years. When retirement came, they moved to the west coast of Florida and spent 12 happy years enjoying the warmth and new friends.
Eventually, the call of grandchildren won out, and they moved north to Falmouth, to be close to their daughter and son-in-law, CJ and Jim Rivard of Edgartown, and their four grandchildren, Michaela, Jared, Daniel, and Jamie Rivard.
Madeline died in 2005 and Rocky eventually moved in with his daughter and family in Edgartown. He spent two final, happy years enjoying his new and caring friends at the Senior Day Program and being surrounded by his family. Along with his family in Edgartown, he is survived by his brother Frank Fedele of Herkimer, New York, and many extended family members.
Relatives and friends are invited to attend the funeral from Chapman, Cole and Gleason Funeral Home, 475 Main Street, Falmouth on Monday, March 14 at noon, with a funeral service in St. Barnabas Church, Main Street, Falmouth at 1 pm. Burial with military honors will follow in the National Cemetery, in Bourne, at 2:30 pm.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to the Wounded Warrior Project, http://wtow.woundedwarriorproject.org/