GOUVERNEUR -- William M. Scozzafava 92, passed away peacefully on December 11, 2018, at Canton-Potsdam Hospital, after briefly being a patient both there and at Gouverneur Hospital.
He was born on May 11, 1926 in Gouverneur, to Fred G. and Katherine M. (Morrow) Scozzafava.
William attended Gouverneur High School, where he was active in high school sports, competing in both track & field and football. He graduated in 1944 with a College Entrance diploma.
He was drafted into the United States Army in that same year, and by August 1944 began his Basic Training at Aberdeen Proving Ground in Aberdeen, Maryland, and completed his training at Ft. Benning, Georgia. He served in the 34th Infantry 24th Division in the Philippines as part of the Asiatic Pacific Campaign, and as part of the Japanese Occupation Force. He was the recipient of the Asiatic Pacific Campaign; Good Conduct; World War II Victory; and Army Occupations Medals and was Honorably Discharged in August of 1946.
Upon returning to Gouverneur, William joined the family auto parts business, Gouverneur Auto Parts, a division of Gouverneur Welding & Machine Works, which his father, Fred G. Scozzafava started in 1916. He loved the work and the challenge, and over the following years, along with his brother John and sister Joan, helped expand the business to Massena, Canton and Clayton. In 2014, Gouverneur Auto Parts & Supply, Inc., was honored with “Business of the Year” accolades from the Gouverneur Chamber of Commerce, and in 2016 celebrated its 100th year in business. He continued to be active in the business until the last few months, along with his son Fred, and until recently his brother John. The business was always his “home away from home.”
He married Marilyn F. Dier on September 1, 1964, at a small ceremony in Port Chester, NY.
In addition to his love of family, his friends and his business, William took an active interest in history, politics and government, at both the national and local levels. At various times from the 1960s through the 90s he served on the Gouverneur Village Board of Trustees, Village Planning Board, and various committees. He was especially proud of his daughter Dierdre’s achievements in both local and state government.
He was a lifelong sports fan, especially of local high school and college football and basketball, and enjoyed watching his son Thomas play both sports, first in Gouverneur, then at the Taft School in Watertown, CT, and finally at Hamilton College in Clinton, NY. He was an SU Football season ticket holder for over 20 years, and thoroughly enjoyed those games.
William recently celebrated his 70th year as a proud and supportive member of Gouverneur Lodge #217, F. & A. M., as was his father, and as are both of his sons. And as a veteran of World War II, he was pleased to be a member and supporter of the VFW.
Last, but not least, he loved his independence, and he needed to be active, both indoors, and outdoors especially. Even in his later years, he was drawn to snow shovels, rakes or brooms, much to the consternation of his family.
William is survived by his wife Marilyn, four children, two daughters, Dierdre Scozzafava (Ron McDougall), and Lisa Mendlowitz (Itzchak Ravuna), two sons, Frederick Scozzafava and Thomas Scozzafava (Pearl Ashcraft), a brother, John Scozzafava, grandchildren Matthew Hopper, Millicent Hopper, Jordan Ravuna and Danielle Ravuna, and several nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his father Fred G., his mother Katherine, and three sisters, Joan Lamar, Beverly Scozzafava and a sister who died at birth.
Arrangements are with Green Funeral Home. There will be a private, family gathering on Saturday December 15, followed by a burial at Riverside Cemetery, Gouverneur. The family will hold a Celebration of Life Memorial on what would have been his 93rd birthday, May 11th, 2019 at the Gouverneur Community Center.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations be given to the Gouverneur Hospital, the St. Lawrence County Office of the Aging Nutrition Program, or the Gouverneur Methodist Church Friday Luncheon Program.