Robert F. Gaudenzi, Sr., 89, Devoted Family Man, Local Accountant
Robert F. Gaudenzi, Sr., known lovingly by many as Bob, Bobby G, Boobie or Pop, passed away at the home of his granddaughter Cory Cassidy and her husband, Keith Sockell, in the early morning hours of Friday, February 17, 2023, three weeks after turning 89 years old. Born in Elizabeth, N.J., he had and shared many hilarious memories of good old Mravlag Manor, played outside down at the creek with his buddies for hours on end, stickball and football in the streets, and best of all met his childhood sweetheart and love of his life, Patsy (Barry) Gaudenzi. Bob and Pat, the light of his life, wed on April 16, 1955, and lived in Linden, N.J., then Roselle, N.J., after which time they came to settle in Cranford, N.J., where they spent their many happiest of years raising their family and enjoying life together. They spent most of their summers together with family down the shore, first in Ocean Gate, then Sea Girt and Lavallette. Bob spent the last of his years happy, comfortable, and very spoiled with much love, excellent care, and of course great food, at the home of his daughter, Jodi Gaudenzi, and her partner, Jesse, in Linden, N.J.
Bob, who led a truly exemplary life that could literally fill an entire history book, began his college career at Temple University on a football scholarship. During the interim, he was called to serve in Korea, in the U.S. Army, and had many interesting stories about his comrades and British friends that he met overseas. Upon returning home, he completed his college studies at Seton Hall University, and took a job with the IRS.
In 1976, Bob acquired his own accounting practice in Cranford, and was known by many as their local accountant. He worked at his Cranford offices, alongside his daughter Christine Cassidy (Luis) for 42 years, and was later joined by his son, Robert Jr. (Renata), and for many years his daughter Jodi (whom he lovingly referred to as his All-Star). His three additional daughters — Karen Fontenelli (Plainfield), Patti Saifi (Green Brook) and Kathleen Gaudenzi (Cranford) — also worked at his office occasionally, during the very earlier years (which was more fun than work, being right around the corner from the Pink Submarine! Spent many a “work afternoon” there under the guise of running out for a soda, while we were really eating Fritos, Cheese Doodles, Suzy Q’s, and playing Pac Man…as the Boss supposedly turned a blind eye. Very kind and patient man with his children, our Bob; he was in his 40s at that time!). He was very fortunate to have had the same staff for the duration of his entire accounting career, which he deeply appreciated. He thoroughly enjoyed working with all of his clients and assisting them with their taxes, and developed relationships with many that lasted his lifetime.
At his young age of 84 years old, he finally decided it was time to slow down a bit and handed over the reins to Christine and Robert. He was proud of the fact that in his earlier years, he worked day and night at multiple jobs, including the United States Postal Service and GM in Linden, while attending school in order to become an accountant, so he could provide the very best life for his family. He dedicated his entire life to his wife, children and family, and helped out in any capacity that he possibly could. He was also very proud that he was honored as Distinguished Businessman in Downtown Cranford, many decades ago, and was also awarded the Honorary Silver Lifetime Membership of the Cranford PBA. We can still see the smile on his face as this honor was bestowed upon him (Thanks, Captain Matt!). He truly cherished his strong bonds and friendships in Cranford. We are so very sad to have lost such a wonderful Patriarch, the rock of our family, but we thank God every day that we were blessed with this fabulous man in our lives for so long. He was truly a beacon of light, guiding us every step of the way. He lost a huge piece of his heart when his beloved wife, Patsy, passed, and now they are united once again. We can only pray that together they get the rest that they so richly deserve. May they both be filled with peace, love and light, for all eternity.
Bob was predeceased by his wife, Patsy (2008); parents, Guy and Mary (Savonis) Gaudenzi; brother, Vince (2006), who was also a football standout and inducted into the Elizabeth Football Hall of Fame; nephew, Vincent Gaudenzi (2021), and beloved son-in-law, Bill Cassidy (2004).
In addition to his six children, Bob is survived by 16 additional grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his sister-inlaw, Mary Ellen Barry Foley (Richard); brother-in-law, Kevin Barry (Lisa), both of North Carolina; several nieces and nephews, and lifetime friend, Tom Kennedy (Springfield).
With our deepest gratitude, we send a very heartfelt thank you to Bob’s grandson, Christopher Bizub, who took the greatest care of his grandfather over the past three years; his granddaughters Cory, Emma Cassidy Perriello, Alex Bizub Miranda, and son-in-law, Luis, for their never-ending care and support; his Home Health Aides — Maka and Aiya — and the entire JFK Hospital Medical Community, for taking the best of care of our father.
A special thank you to Vincent, Angela and Charlie — Dooley Funeral Service — for their kindness, compassion and respect, as they guided us through the grieving process and final private arrangement preparation. We will be forever grateful.
In Bob’s honor and memory, contributions can be made to — Cranford PBA Local No. 52, P.O. Box 464, Cranford, New Jersey 07016, or JFK University Medical Center Foundation, www.hackensackmeridian.com (Donate; JFK Foundation; Neuroscience & Brain Health).
December 7, 2023