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Augenti, Ambrose, Trobacco and DeMartino Families

Last update 12/25/2020

Note: Elizabeth "Betty" Augenti and her direct ancestors of are shown in red.

Peter Augenti married Albina DeMartino. They had a child, Elizabeth "Betty" Augenti before divorcing in 1934. Albina married Michael Ambrose in 1936. Michael adopted Betty as his own daughter. He and Albina had two more children: Claire Ambrose and Michael Ambrose, Jr.

Claire Ambrose was born in Hughestown, Pennsylvania on March 7, 1937. She graduated Wyoming Memorial High School and Wilkes College. On April 12, 1958, she married Malcolm Dudley Condie, son of Malcolm Douglas Sinclair Condie (1897-1961) and Myrtle Dudley (1900-1974). Malcolm was born in Camden New Jersey on October 7, 1926. He had a brother Paul Condie. He also had a sister, Janet Sinclair Condie, who died at the age of five months in 1925. The Condies lived at 431 Peach Street in Hammonton, New Jersey. Malcolm was a tall redhead, with brown eyes and a ruddy complexion. He stood 6' 2" and weighed 155 pounds. His father was Scotch-Canadian. Malcolm had been previously engaged to a Ryder College graduate named Lori Ann Wilson, but they never married.

Malcolm graduated Ursinus College and served in the U.S. Army in the Pacific Theater during World War II. The couple met while working in the Engineering Department of E. I. du Pont de Nemours in Wilmington, Delaware. They lived at the Condie home at 431 Peach Street. They had four sons: Bruce, Christopher, Gregory, and Michael; and one daughter, Janet.

Malcolm served on the Hammonton Board of Adjustment and was a member of the Kiwanis Club. After working for E. I. du Pont de Nemours as an Investment Engineer, he retired and he and Claire moved around. They lived in Perth, Scotland, New Orleans, Louisiana, and Dana Point, California. Malcolm died in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania on September 12, 2012 at the age of 85. He was buried with full military honors near Harrisburg at Indiantown Gap National Cemetery in Annville, Pennsylvania. This is the same cemetery where Claire's sister Betty and her husband Louis DeGennaro are buried.

Michael, Albina, 8-year-old Betty, and 4-year-old Claire were living at 259 Parsonage Street in Pittston, Pennsylvania when Michael Ambrose, Jr. was born on August 27, 1941. He was only six years old when he was killed in a horrible accident while playing in the street in nearby Hughestown. He was buried at the Denison Cemetery in the nearby town of Forty Fort. To read about the tragic circumstances of his death, click here.


Back in the first half of the Nineteenth Century in the little hilltop Italian village called Santa Croce di Magliano, Pasquale Augenti married Carlotta Lerna. On May 17, 1842, they had a son named Cherubino Augenti. Cherubino grew up to become a tailor in Santa Croce. Around 1869, he married Maria Beatrice Tartaglia. Maria was born in Santa Croce on July 2, 1850. She and Cherubino had eight children but only four would make it into adulthood, and only five have been documented: Nicholo Augenti, born November 3, 1874; Carlo Augenti, born almost exactly six years after Nicholo, on November 2, 1880; twins Luisa Augenti and Giuseppina Augenti, October 28, 1883; and Antonio Augenti, November 28, 1886.

Sometime around 1892, Cherubino set out alone for America. He settled in New York City, working as a tailor. On April 12, 1895, his son Nicolo arrived and joined him in Manhattan. On April 13, 1896, Cherubino's wife Maria Tartaglia arrived aboard the S. S. Bolivia. She was 48 years old and brought the rest of the children with her: 15-year-old Carlo, 12-year-old Giuseppina and 10-year-old Antonio. Giuseppina's twin sister Luisa was not with them and it can be assumed she died in Italy between 1883 and 1896.

On August 14, 1898, Nicolo's soon-to-be wife Maria Emanuela Mastrangelo arrived aboard the S. S. Tartar Prince. Maria was born in Santa Croce di Magliano on March 17, 1878, the daughter of Michele Mastrangelo and Teresa Giuliano. Two weeks later, on August 27, 1898, Nicolo and Maria were married at Saint Anthony's Roman Catholic Church on Houston Street in Manhattan. Maria was 5' 2" tall with brown hair and eyes and a dark complexion. Their first child, Maria Addolarata Augenti, was born in Manhattan on December 14, 1900.

Shortly after Addolarata's birth, the young family went back to Italy, then on October 11, 1901, Nicolo, Maria and Addolarata returned to America on the same Tartar Prince steam ship that brought Maria to America in 1898. After Addolarata, Nicolo and Maria had twelve more children. We will continue that story later, but for now let's consider the other children of Cherubino and Maria.

____________________ CARLO AUGENTI ____________________

Cherubino and Maria's second child, Carlo Augenti was born in Santa Croce di Magliano on November 2, 1880. As stated above, he arrived in America with his mother and siblings on April 13, 1896 when he was 15 years old. He found employment in a shoe factory in Manhattan. He was 5' 9" tall with a medium build, brown hair and eyes and a light complexion. He was also known by the name Charles. Between 1900 and 1904, he married another Italian immigrant named Ida Coppi. Neither Carlo nor Ida went beyond 8th grade in school.

They were living at 307 East 60th Street in Manhattan when their first child, Alfred Augenti was born March 11, 1904. Unfortunately, he died one month later on April 13, 1904. A year later, they were living at 1125 2nd Avenue in Manhattan, but soon gave up living in New York City for the Massachusetts suburb of Brockton where several Augenti cousins lived, and where Carlo found work in another shoe factory. For some reason, however, Ida returned to Manhattan to give birth to their second child, Rose Maria Augenti, on May 12, 1906. They rented an apartment at 95 Grafton Street in Brockton. On May 4, 1909, another daughter, named Mary Augenti, was born in Brockton. Sadly, she too died, a year later on October 19, 1910. They refused to give up on having a daughter named Mary and another Mary Augenti was born in Brockton on September 17, 1911. This one lived to the age of 8, according to the 1920 Federal Census, but another child, a boy, died a day after he was born on April 18, 1915.

Ida would not give birth to any more children. She died at the age of 44 on July 27, 1923. She was buried at Calvary Cemetery in Brockton.

Five years after Ida's death, Carlo married Mary E. Nunes in 1928. Mary was born in Connecticut in 1902, the daughter of Portuguese immigrants Phillip Perry Nunes and Mary Rega. She was 22 years younger than Carlo. Mary had a daughter from a previous marriage named Eleanor Mary Silva, born in Brockton on August 9, 1925. Carlo and Mary had several children of their own, starting with Charles F. Augenti, born January 2, 1929. In 1930, Carlo, Mary Eleanor and Charles were still living at 95 Grafton Street in Brockton. Rose and Mary from Carlo's first marriage were not there. Rose was actually living by herself just a few steps around the corner at 217 Winthrop Street. A few years later, she moved a short distance from there to 11 Connecticut Place where she lived for many years. She worked as a sales clerk at the Woolworth's five-and-dime store in town. There is no further evidence of her sister Mary. Rose, however, eventually married widower Joseph O. Staula, an Italian immigrant born in Italy on February 18, 1897. Joseph's first wife Helen was only 30 years old when she died in 1931. Rose and Joseph lived in Canton, Massachusetts and were members of the Order Sons Of Italy In America, Italo Balbo Lodge number 1705 in Canton. They had three children: Dominick J. Staula, Joseph C. Staula, and Louise Staula.

Joseph and Rose eventually divorced. She appears to have remarried in 1960, to someone named Skarp who either died or was divorced. In 1969, she had her name returned to Staula for insurance purposes. Joseph died at the age of 62 on December 28, 1959. He was buried with his first wife at Brookdale Cemetery in Dedham, Massachusetts. Rose was living in Stoughton, Massachusetts when she died of pneumonia at the age of 71 on January 15, 1978. She was buried at Knollwood Memorial Park in Canton, Massachusetts.

Following son Charles' birth in 1929, Carlo and Mary had three more children: Robert Cherubino Augenti (1930); Henry Augenti (1932); and Jean A. Augenti (1939). Mary Nunes daughter from her first marriage, Eleanor Silva, whose father was Jules Silva, was adopted by Carlo, but she retained her surname. She died in Brockton March 20, 1989, age 63.

As stated above, Charles "Charlie" F. Augenti was born in Brockton on January 2, 1929. He was a lifelong resident of Brockton. Charlie was a graduate of Brockton High School and earned a degree in Engineering at Lowell University. He served in the U. S. Navy during World War II on the USS Valley Forge. He was employed by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for almost 40 years, and retired as a Civil Engineer in 1989. Charlie enjoyed spending time with his family and friends. He was a skillful woodworker and former member of the Knights of Columbus. He loved to share stories of growing up in Brockton, and many times contributed to the Brockton Enterprise Newspaper Editorials.

Around 1959, Charlie married Susan Dorothy "Dolly" Perrault. Dolly was born in Brockton on November 19, 1925. She was one of twelve of the Perrault family who grew up on the Eastside of Brockton. Her parents were Leo J. Perrault and Susan M. Ford. She was a graduate of Brockton High School class of 1943. In her early years, Dolly worked for Knapp Shoe, New England Telephone and the Brockton School Department but her greatest love was her family. She and Charlie had two sons: Charles "Chuck" F. Augenti, Jr. and Christopher "Chris" A. Augenti. Charlie was 80 years old when he died peacefully on June 6, 2009. He was buried at Pine Hill Cemetery in West Bridgewater, just south of Brockton. Dolly died unexpectedly at her home on December 23, 2011. She was 86 years old. She was buried next to Charlie at Pine Hill.

Robert Cherubino Augenti was born in Brockton on November 7, 1930. He served in the Marine Corps. He was the owner of Sunex Electronics Supply Company and the founder of Southeastern Electronics in Fort Lauderdale that grew and expanded throughout Florida. He married Glenda Ann Galante in Brockton in 1954. Glenda was born in Brockton on August 9, 1933. In 1957, they moved to South Florida and raised two daughters, Adele Augenti and Alane Augenti. Glenda worked in the travel industry for many years and she and Robert enjoyed traveling in Europe and the Orient. Robert and Glenda divorced after 22 years of marriage on September 13, 1976. On August 8, 1980, Robert married for a second time, to Deborah "Debbie" Karen Vogt in Broward. Debbie was born in Manhattan on September 6, 1949. Robert died in Tarpon Springs, Florida on April 19, 2017. He was 86 years old. He was buried at Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell, Florida. Glenda was 71 when she died in Hollywood, Florida on August 29, 2004.

Henry Augenti was born in Brockton on March 9, 1932. He served in the U. S. Army. He worked as an inspector for the Foxboro Electric Company for 25 years. He lived in West Bridgewater, Massachusetts, then moved to nearby Taunton around 1992. He married Priscilla A. Read. Priscilla was born in Brockton on October 13, 1931. They had three children: Patricia, Thomas and William. Henry enjoyed woodworking, music and travelling. He also enjoyed growing, cooking and eating food. Priscilla died in West Bridgewater on March 17, 1994, age 62. Henry was 82 when he died at the West Roxbury VA Hospital on the Fourth of July 2014. He was buried at the VA National Cemetery in Bourne, Massachusetts.

Jean Ann Augenti was born in Brockton in 1938. She married someone named Pechilis and lived in Abington, Massachusetts, a town just five miles east of Brockton. That is all we know about her.


By 1940, Carlo and Mary were living at 14 Pinkham Street in Brockton. Carlo was working for the Knapp Brothers Shoe Factory in Brockton. He had sustained an injury to his left leg and now weighed 215 pounds. Mary died in 1957 when she was 55 years old. In August of 1965, at the age of 84, Carlo died.

____________________ LUISA and GIUSEPPINA AUGENTI ____________________

Twins Luisa Augenti and Giuseppina Augenti were born in Santa Croce di Magliano on October 28, 1883. When their mother Maria Tartaglia Augenti arrived in America in 1896, she brought 12-year-old Giuseppina with her but not Luisa. We may assume that Luisa died in Italy.

On August 11, 1907, Giuseppina married Agostino Penta in Manhattan. Agostino was born somewhere near Santa Croce on February 17, 1884. His parents were Marco Penta and Raffaella D'Antonio. He and Giuseppina, now known as Josephine, lived at 660 Crescent Avenue in the Bronx, New York. Agostino worked as a presser in a clothing store. He was 5' 9" tall and weighed 180 pounds. He had brown hair and brown eyes with a ruddy complexion. They had a daughter named after Agostino's mother, Raffaella Penta, born August 6, 1909. By 1930, Agostino and Josephine had moved to 859 East 227 Street in the Bronx. Raffaella, who would have been 20 years old, was not living with them. Shortly after, they moved to 621 East 179 Street in the Bronx. Agostino died on March 20, 1955 at the age of 71. Josephine was 95 when she died in August of 1979.

____________________ ANTONIO AUGENTI ____________________

Antonio "Tony" Augenti was born in Santa Croce di Magliano on November 28, 1886. As stated above, he was ten years old when he arrived to America with his mother in 1896. He was one of the few Augenti immigrants who could read and write, and speak English. He started working as a bookkeeper for a Manhattan bank. He was also a talented singer. He was tall (5' 10") and slender (170 pounds), with brown hair and eyes. He was performing in Cleveland, Ohio where he met and married a young organist named Marion Louise Wallace. Marion was born in Cleveland on March 19, 1897. Her parents were Grant Wallace and Harriet "Hattie" Bauer. The marriage took place in Cleveland on June 2, 1923. Immediately afterward, they boarded the ocean liner Berengaria in New York on June 5, 1923 and sailed for a long tour of France and Italy. During their long stay in Italy, Marion gave birth to their daughter Martha Augenti. The family returned to America aboard the liner Duilio on Christmas Day in 1924.

Back in New York, they settled in at 1955 Grand Concourse in the Bronx. Tony continued his career as a professional singer. By 1930, they had moved to 601 Ocean Avenue in Brooklyn. Their second child, Thomas F. Augenti was born on June 18, 1930. By 1935, they moved again, this time to 325 East 69 Street in Manhattan, where Tony was now working as a teacher at a private school. Tony was 84 years old when he died in August of 1971. Incredibly, Marion lived until she was 104 years old, and died on November 5, 2001.


__________ NICOLO AUGENTI and MARIA MASTRANGELO __________

Back to Cherubino and Maria's first born, Nicolo "Nick" Augenti, born in Santa Croce di Magliano on November 3, 1874. As stated above, he arrived in America in 1895. In 1898, his soon-to-be wife Maria "Mary" Emanuela Mastrangelo arrived. Within a few weeks of her arrival, they were married at Saint Anthony's Roman Catholic Church in Manhattan. Nick was a short, stout man with brown hair and eyes. Mary was 5' 2" tall with brown hair and eyes and a dark complexion. Their first child, Maria Addolarata Augenti, was born in Manhattan on December 14, 1900. Shortly after Addolarata's birth, the young family went back to Italy, returning to Manhattan the following year where Nick established himself as a tailor. After Addolarata, Nick and Mary had twelve more children.

They moved around a lot, before ending up in Nanticoke, Pennsylvania. In the beginning, they lived at 349 West 41st Street in Manhattan, then 417 West 41st Street, and 136 West 62nd Street. Shortly after, in 1910, they moved to the Bronx at 2453 Hoffman Street, then a few blocks away at 2334 Hughes Avenue, then again back a few more blocks to 582 East 187 Street.

During this constantly shifting time, from 1901 to 1918, eleven more children were born after Addolarata. They were Cherubino, Theresa, two Michaels (the first would die as a baby), Peter, Amerigo, Anthony, Columbo, Helena, and Italia. After Italia's birth in 1918, they moved from the Bronx to Nanticoke, Pennsylvania. There, Nick set up his own tailoring business and became known as "Nick the Tailor." He and Mary were parishioners at Saint Francis' Catholic Church, its Holy Name Society and the Italian-American Citizen's Club.

____________________ MARIA ADDOLARATA AUGENTI ____________________

Maria "Mary" Addolarata Augenti was born in Manhattan on December 11, 1900. She was 18 years old when the family moved from the Bronx to Nanticoke in 1918. Within a year, she married Luigi "Louis" A. Giusti, an Italian immigrant who worked for a road construction company. Louis was born in Labico, Italy on May 12, 1896. Labico is a village near Rome. Louis was 5' 7" tall and weighed 175 pounds. He had brown hair and eyes with a light complexion. As a result of an accident, he had only three fingers on his right hand.

Mary and Louis had nine children. They lived at the rear of 169 West Green Street in Nanticoke. They were members of Saint Francis Roman Catholic church in Nanticoke.

By the 1950's, they were living at 421 East Ridge Street in Nanticoke. Louis was now a foreman for a road construction company. He was supervising road work on April 2, 1956, one day after Easter, when he died suddenly of a massive heart attack. He was 59 years old. Twenty-three years later, Mary, 78 years old and living a 1 Green Street in Nanticoke, died there on January 25, 1979. She and Louis are buried in the Saint Francis church cemetery.
____________________ GERARD AUGENTI ____________________

It has been documented that Nick and Mary had 12 children. All have been accounted for except one. However, the 1905 New York State Census lists a young son named Gerard Augenti, living at 136 West 62nd Street in Manhattan with Nick and Mary, his brother Cherubino, and sisters Mary and Tessie. Gerard does not appear in any other record including no other census record. So, for now, we will consider Gerard to be the twelfth undocumented child. He was probably born around 1901. There is, however, an equally inconclusive bit of evidence on the 1940 Federal Census. This shows Nick and Mary with a 15-year-old son named Angelo Augenti. Again, this is the only record of such a person.
____________________ CHERUBINO AUGENTI ____________________

Cherubino Augenti was born at 349 West 41st Street in Manhattan on March 4, 1902. The family was living at 582 East 187 Street in the Bronx when 18-year-old Cherubino died, on August 3, 1920. He had been working for a printing company. The circumstances of his death are unknown. He was buried at Saint Raymond Cemetery in the Bronx. It was around this time that the family moved to Nanticoke in Pennsylvania.

____________________ MARIA THERESA AUGENTI ____________________

So as not to be confused with her older sister Maria Addolarata, who was called Mary, Maria Theresa "Tessie" Augenti, born in Manhattan on August 26, 1903, was known as Tessie by the family. At the time of her birth, the family was living at 417 West 41st Street in Manhattan. Documentation on her life is sketchy. She was married to James Barone and they lived in Ohio. The marriage took place in Martinsburg, West Virginia on June 15, 1945. James was serving in the U.S. Army at the time. He served from 1943 to 1946. James was born August 21, 1916 and was 13 years younger than Tessie. There is some indication that Tessie was married before to a man named Tiberi.

James was 66 years old when he died in Summit, Ohio on November 4, 1982. He was buried at All Saints Cemetery in Northfield, Ohio. Tessie continued on for many years. She was 99 years old when she died in a long-term care facility in Hillsboro, Ohio on October 25, 2002. She was buried with James at All Saints Cemetery.

____________________ MICHAEL ANTONIO AUGENTI ____________________

The first Michael Antonio Augenti was born in Manhattan on September 3, 1905. He didn't last long, just 15 months, dying on December 9, 1906. He was buried at Calvary Cemetery in Queens, New York. In the fictional novel, The Godfather, by Mario Puzo, Don Vito Corleone was buried in Calvary Cemetery after he was killed in 1955.

____________________ MICHAEL ANTONIO AUGENTI ____________________

When the first Michael died, Mary was pregnant with what would become the second Michael Antonio Augenti. He was born barely two months after the first one died, on February 12, 1907. After the family moved to Nanticoke in 1920, Michael, who dropped out of school after the seventh grade, served three years in the U.S. Army. He later became a house painter and led a rather unsuccessful life of crime, using the aliases of Russel Alvino and Russo Alvarez. In 1934, when he was 27 years old, he was sentenced to serve 2 years at the maximum security Sing Sing Prison in Ossining, New York, for holding up a grocery store in Manhattan. He was transferred from Sing Sing to Auburn Prison in the Finger Lakes region of New York.

Michael was 5' 7" tall and weighed 170 pounds. He had brown hair, brown eyes and a ruddy complexion.

Following his release from prison, he sought work as a hospital attendant and a musician but ended up working as a dishwasher at a restaurant in the Saint George section of Staten Island. He didn't last long as a dishwasher and again turned to crime in 1938 by using a toy gun to rob a man of $58. He was caught and sentenced to 10 more years at Sing Sing. He was transferred to Clinton County Prison in Dannemora, New York, located just below the Canadian border. He was eligible for parole on May 26, 1948. To see the actual prison reports, click here.

He seems to have adopted the Russell Alvino alias and was identified by that name when he died on February 25, 1963, two weeks after his 56th birthday.

____________________ PETER ANTHONY AUGENTI ____________________

Peter Anthony Augenti was born in the Bronx, New York on March 31, 1909. He was 11 years old when his family moved to the coal mining community of Nanticoke in Pennsylvania. When he was old enough, he found work in at the Truesdale coal mine in the Hanover section of Nanticoke. He was 5' 7" tall, weighed 175 pounds, and had brown hair and eyes and a ruddy complexion. He later became a brakeman for the railroad. He was living with his parents at 130 West Green Street in Pittston, Pennsylvania when he married Albina DeMartino on September 27, 1931. Albina was born in Pittston on November 17, 1910. Her parents were Alfred DeMartino and Elizabeth Louise Trobacco. Since Albina was only 20 years old and the age of consent in Pennsylvania at the time was 21, Albina's father had to provide a written consent to the marriage.

A year later, their daughter, Elizabeth (Betty) A. Augenti was born in nearby Hughestown on September 5, 1932. Two years after Betty's birth, Albina sought a divorce from Peter in August of 1934. On January 4, 1936, when Betty was 3 years old, Albina married Michael Ambrose in Pittston. Michael adopted Betty as his daughter.

Peter made his way to New York City. By 1940, he was living at 1317 Jefferson Avenue in Brooklyn and working for the Kaplan Brothers artificial flower factory in Manhattan. On February 12, 1944, Peter enlisted in the U.S. Army. He served with the 750th Railway Operations Battalion. Several months later, Private Augenti married Helen Kovaleski on July 3, 1944. He was honorably discharged on March 26, 1946. Like Peter, Helen had been previously married and only received a divorce a few days before her marriage to Peter. She was born in Nanticoke on New Year's Eve of 1910, the daughter of Polish immigrants John Kovaleski and Stella Bednarek. The Kovaleski's sometimes went by the surname Kerry instead of Kovaleski.

Peter and Helen moved back and forth between Nanticoke and Brooklyn over the years before finally settling back at 335 East Grand Street in Nanticoke. While in New York City, Helen was a hostess at the elegant Schrafft's Restaurant at Radio City. She and Peter were members of the Altar and Rosary Society at Saint Leonard's Parish in Brooklyn. Pete was also a successful musician, playing the saxophone and clarinet and known professionally as "Piccolo Pete." He was also a member of American Legion Post 350, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the Honey Pot Social Club, and the Nanticoke Senior Citizens Club.

Peter and Helen did not have children of their own. They were still living at 335 East Grand Street in Nanticoke when Peter died on July 13, 1993. He was 84 years old. He was buried at Saint Mary's Cemetery, located between Nanticoke and Wilkes-Barre. Helen moved to Dunedin, Florida where she joined the Our Lady of Lourdes Parish. On December 16, 2002, she died at Curlew Care Home in nearby Clearwater. She was 91 years old. She was buried with Peter at Saint Mary's Cemetery.

____________________ AMERIGO FRANK AUGENTI ____________________

Born Amerigo Frank Augenti in the Bronx, New York on November 6, 1910, Frank was nine years old when the family moved to Nanticoke. He dropped out of school after the sixth grade and found employment as an "Iceman" for a local ice company before opening his own painting and papering business. He was 5' 5" tall and weighed 130 pounds. He had brown hair, brown eyes and a light complexion. He enlisted into the U.S. Army three days after Christmas in 1942 and served for three and one-half years. He was wounded while fighting in Germany on November 18, 1944. Two weeks before he was honorably discharged on November 2, 1945, he got married. His bride was Margherita "Margaret" Geraci. They were married at the Church of Immaculate Conception in Jamaica, New York on October 20, 1945. Margaret was born in Jamaica on June 25, 1916. Her parents were Emanuele Geraci and Francesca Amato.

Frank continued with his self-employed painting and paper hanging business in Nanticoke. He was a member of the Nanticoke American Legion Post 350, like his brother Peter. Margaret worked at San-Sue Frocks garment manufacturers in Nanticoke. They lived at 130 Green Street in Nanticoke. They had four children: Marie Augenti, who married Michael Benson; Frances Augenti, who married Carl Kollar; Angela Augenti, married to Paul Litchkowski; and Frank Augenti, Jr..

Frank Jr. was involved in a sensational news story when he filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit against his parents and other family members for abducting him and holding him against his will, and trying to "deprogram" him after he joined the Unification Church religious cult known as the "Moonies." To read more about this, click here.

Frank and Margaret were still living at 130 Green Street in Nanticoke when he died April 14, 1991. He was 80 years old. He was buried at Saint Mary's Cemetery. Margaret was 86 when she died at Hospice of the VNA at Heritage House in Wilkes-Barre. She was buried with Frank at Saint Mary's Cemetery.

____________________ ANTHONY AUGENTI ____________________

Born in the Bronx on February 3, 1912, Anthony "Tony" J. Augenti was eight years old when the family moved to Nanticoke. He dropped out of high school after his freshman year and found work in the Liberty Silk Mill in Nanticoke. He was 5' 9" tall, weighing 175 pounds, with black hair, brown eyes and a light complexion. On September 7, 1936 he married Stella Glowacki at St. Stanislaus Church in Nanticoke. Stella was born in the Honey Pot section of Nanticoke in 1912. She was the daughter of Polish immigrants John Glowacki and Helen Gorzynski. After honeymooning in Atlantic City, the returned to live with his parents at 130 West Green Street.

On April 8, 1942, Tony joined the Army. He was honorably discharged on December 2, 1945 and started working for ABC Beverage Distributors in Nanticoke. He and Stella had one child, Bernard Augenti. By 1950, they were living at 279 River Street in the Honey Pot section of Nanticoke. They were members of Saint Francis Church and the Honey Pot Social Club. Stella was 60 years old when she died at home on December 15, 1972. She was buried at Saint Mary's Cemetery. Several years later, Tony found a companion, Blanche Fela. She died in 1991. Eventually, Tony had to enter the Birchwood Nursing Home in Nanticoke. He died there several years later on July 14, 1995. He was 83 years old. He was buried next to Stella at Saint Mary's Cemetery.

____________________ COLUMBO AUGENTI ____________________

Columbo Augenti was 6 years old when his family moved from New York to Nanticoke. He was born in the Bronx on November 11, 1913. Like his brother Tony, he dropped out of high school after his freshman year. He went back to New York and found a job assembling baby carriages at the Biltright Baby Carriage Company in Brooklyn. He was 5' 8" tall and weighed 170 pounds, with brown hair and eyes and a ruddy complexion. He came back to Nanticoke to marry Anna Kerrick on June 5, 1938. The marriage took place at Saint Nicholas Greek Catholic church in Nanticoke. Anna was born in the nearby town of Alden on August 15, 1912, the daughter of Russian immigrants Harry Kerrick and Anna Rudowski. The Kerricks lived at 1216 Hanover Street. At the time of the marriage, Anna worked at a cigar factory. Columbo continued working in Brooklyn, sharing a room with other workers at 964 Greene Avenue in Brooklyn and going back to Nanticoke on his days off. He earned a yearly salary of $1000 in 1939. Eventually, Anna joined him in New York.

Anna and Columbo had a son named Nicholas Michael Augenti who was born June 28, 1944 in Brooklyn. He served with the U. S. Marine Corps Reserve and worked at Parsons and Whittemore in New York, one of the world's largest producers of market pulp, the raw material used in papermaking. On September 29, 2013, Nicholas died in Norwalk, Connecticut. He was 69 years old. Anna and Columbo also had a daughter, Mary Anne Augenti.

Columbo was 88 years old and living at 5409 65th Place in Flushing, Queens, New York when he died on October 14, 2002. He was buried at Saint Charles Cemetery, located in East Farmingdale on Long Island, New York. Anna was 95 when she died on February 16, 2008 and buried next to Columbo.

____________________ HELENA AUGENTI ____________________

She was born in the Bronx on October 21, 1916. Helena Augenti was 4 years old when her family moved to Nanticoke. She married several times. First, to Anthony DePietro in 1938, then Michael O'Connell in 1959, and finally to Ralph Pina. She died July 24, 2001 at the age of 84.

____________________ ITALIA IDA AUGENTI ____________________

She was the last child born to Nick and Maria. Italia Ida Augenti was born in the Bronx on March 30, 1918, but went by the name "Ida Alice" most of her life. Like her sister Helena, she married several times. Her married names were Gregor, Maura and Molchan. She died at the Country Manor Nursing Home in Toms River, New Jersey on October 20, 1996, age 78.

To see a map showing the location of the places in Pennsylvania described above, click here.

____________________ PASSINGS ____________________

In 1910, Cherubino and Maria Augenti and their son Tony were living at 168 Utica Avenue in Brooklyn, New York. Cherubino was 65 years old and Maria 58. Curiously, there was another Augenti family living in the same three-story building. This was 34-year-old Henry Augenti and his wife Amelia and their son Louis, and daughters Savarina, Louisa, Gertrude, and Yola, plus Henry's brother Louis. To make this even more curiouser, they also had Henry's widowed mother living with them. Her name was Saverianna Tartaglia. As you will recall, Cherubino's wife Maria was a Tartaglia. Is Henry related to Cherubino? We don't have enough information at this time to determine that.

By 1915, Cherubino, Maria and Tony moved back to Manhattan at 155 East 85 Street. But they soon moved again, this time to the Bronx. On January 2, 1919, Maria died in the Bronx from Broncho Pneumonia and Chronic Myocarditis (heart disease). She was buried at Saint Raymond's Cemetery in the Bronx. Cherubino's son Nick was still working in his tailor shop in Nanticoke in 1930 when he got word that his father had died suddenly in New York. Cherubino died on November 19, 1930 and was buried with Maria at Saint Raymond's Cemetery.

Nick The Tailor and his wife Maria were living at 130 West Green Street in Nanticoke when he developed heart disease. In 1951, he retired from his tailoring business and he and Maria were planning to move back to New York to live with their son Peter. Before this happened, however, Nick died in Nanticoke from Coronary Occlusion (blockage of the arteries leading to heart failure) on July 17, 1952. He was 78 years old. He was buried with his parents at Saint Raymond's Cemetery. At the time of his death, he and Mary had 21 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren.

I have not been able to find any more information about Mary. She was still alive when Nick died.

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Note: Claire Ambrose Condie and her direct ancestors are shown in red.

Back in the second half of the Nineteenth Century in the Italian village of Vico del Gargano, Michele Abruzzese married Spidica Pomana. Vico del Gargano is called the "Villagio dell'Amore" (Village of Love). It is located 5 miles from the Adriatic coast of Southern Italy and about 1,500 feet up the hillside.

On November 12, 1887, Michele and Spidica had a son they named Matteo Abruzzese. Some sources say he was born December 12 of 1886. In January of 1909, 21-year-old Matteo arrived in America aboard the S. S. Barbarossa and settled in the coal mining town of Pittston, Pennsylvania. He was 5' 5" tall and weighed 135 pounds. He had black hair, brown eyes and a dark complexion. By 1942, when he was 54 years old, he claimed to be 5' 11.5" tall, weighing 175 pounds with brown hair, hazel eyes and a light complexion. Instead of working in a coal mine, he took up farming and married another Italian immigrant, Maria Michela "Clara" Mastromatteo, the daughter of Michele Mastromatteo and Mary Regosa. Clara was born in Vico del Gargano on April 23, 1891. She came to America in 1910. She and Matteo lived in the northern section of Pittston called The Junction and Americanized their last name to "Ambrose" and Matteo became Matthew. In 1920, they moved 50 miles southwest of Pittston, to the town of Orange where they continued farming. They raised nine children.

____________________ MICHAEL AMBROSE ____________________

Clara and Matthew's first born was Michael "Mike" Ambrose. He was born in Hughestown, Pennsylvania on November 22, 1912. At that time, Hughestown and Pittston were synonymous. The Ambroses lived on Parsonage Street that was one of the borders between the two towns.

Like his father, Mike took up farming, but back in Pittston instead of Orange. He was 18 years old when he married Virginia Lewis in Wyoming, Pennsylvania on August 29, 1931. Wyoming is a few miles away from Pittston on the other side of the Susquehanna River. Virginia was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania on October 23, 1912, the daughter of a blacksmith, William Lewis, and Katherine Rowlands. The marriage didn't last long. Two months later, Virginia left him. On January 4, 1936, Mike married Albina Augenti. Albina had a marital experience similar to Mike's. She was married to Peter Augenti September 27, 1931. They had a daughter, Elizabeth "Betty" Augenti, but Peter deserted them both and in 1934 Albina filed for divorce.

Albina was born in Hughestown on November 17, 1910, the daughter of Alfred DeMartino and Louise Troback (Trobacco). After marrying Albina, Mike adopted 2-year-old Betty and raised her as his daughter. Mike and Albina had two more children: Claire Ambrose and Michael Ambrose, Jr. Their stories can be found at the beginning of this web page.

Mike, Albina and the children lived at the DeMartino family home at 259 Parsonage Street, Pittston/Hughestown. They were members of Our Lady Of Mount Carmel Catholic Church. Mike found employment with the Weston Corporation in the town of Archbald, located about 20 miles northeast of Pittston. The company was engaged in the engineering, manufacturing and assembling of precision electro-mechanical components and systems for the government as well as private industry. Albina supplemented their income by working as a seamstress in the garment industry.

Mike was 66 years old when he died on October 17, 1979. He was buried at Denison Cemetery in Forty Fort, Pennsylvania. Albina lived for many more years. In 1998, she entered the Wesley Village Nursing Home where she died three years later on August 7, 2001. She was 90 years old. She was buried with Mike at Denison Cemetery.

____________________ CARL AMBROSE ____________________

The second child born to Clara and Matthew was their son Carl Matthew Ambrose. He was born in Pittston on February 19, 1914. He was 6 years old when the family moved to Orange. On October 14, 1939, he married Freda Shirley. Freda was born in West Wyoming, Pennsylvania on November 21, 1918. Her parents were Frederick Shirley and Susan Wiederman. Carl worked at the Anthracite Coal Company in Pittston. He was 5' 5" tall and weighed 165 pounds, with black hair, brown eyes and a dark complexion. Around 1947, they moved to 922 West Eighth Street in West Wyoming.

Carl and Freda had four children: Carl Ambrose Jr., David Fred Ambrose, Shirley Ambrose and Rose Mary Ambrose. In 1966, after a long battle with cancer, Freda died on September 3, 1966. She was only 47 years old. She was buried at Memorial Shrine Cemetery in nearby Carverton, Pennsylvania. Years later, Carl was sitting in his living room at 922 West Eighth Street watching television with his granddaughter, 9-year-old Beverly Weaver, when a taxi cab came crashing through the wall and seriously injured Carl. He sustained injuries to his head and chest and was placed in the intensive care unit at General Hospital. His granddaughter somehow escaped injury. Once Carl recovered enough, he went back to work for Nelson Manufacturing Company. He was at work on February 17, 1975 when he suffered a fatal heart attack and died. He was buried with Freda at Memorial Shrine.

Carl and Freda's son David Ambrose was born May 16, 1947. He married Theresa Cohowicz in 1966. He and Theresa had two sons. David was a police officer in West Wyoming until he became seriously ill around 1991 and successfully survived a heart and kidney transplant. He then went to work for United Foundries for ten years before his death at age 58 on July 11, 2005. He was buried at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Carverton.

____________________ NICHOLAS AMBROSE ____________________

Child number three for Clara and Matthew was Nicholas "Nick" Ambrose, born on the 29th of March in 1916. He was 4 years old when they moved to Orange. Like most of his siblings, he never entered high school. He was working on his father's farm in Pittston when he married Mary Sadowski on Christmas Eve of 1940. Mary lived with her parents, Joseph Sadowski and Alexandria Garwaczka at 128 Diamond Street in Swoyersville, located a few miles from Pittston across the Susquehanna River. She was born in Swoyersville on March 23, 1919. At the time of the marriage, she worked in a cigar factory. Her father and brothers were all coal miners.

After the marriage, Nick and Mary lived in Swoyersville and he began working for the De Roma Coal Company in Kingston, just south of Swoyersville. Nick had gray eyes, brown hair and a light brown complexion. He was 5' 8" tall and weighed a slim 150 pounds. He and Mary were members of Saint Mary's of Czestochowa church in Swoyersville. Nick later worked for the Harry E. Cola Company and a construction company. At some point he and Mary moved a few miles away to the town of Pringle where they became the owners and operators of Ambrose's Market. They had four children: daughters Mary Ann Ambrose, Barbara Ambrose, and Rose Marie Ambrose, and a son, Nicholas Ambrose Jr..

Nick was 72 years old when he died in the General Hospital in Wilkes-Barre on May 18, 1988. Like his brother Michael, he was buried at Denison Cemetery in Forty Fort, just two miles from Pringle. On January 13, 1996, Mary died. She was 76 years old. She was buried with Nick at Denison Cemetery.

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____________________ JOHN AMBROSE ____________________

John Ambrose was born in Pittston on March 18, 1918. He was Clara and Matthew's fourth child. Like his brothers, he helped his father working the family farm. On June 16, 1941, he enlisted in the U. S. Army and served for four and one half years. He was tall (5' 11") and thin (150 pounds), with brown hair and eyes and a dark complexion. While he was stationed at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, he fell in love with Audrey Louise Adams and they were married on September 27, 1942 in Altus, Oklahoma where Audrey lived with her parents, George and Lois Adams. Audrey was born in Foard City in Texas on September 1, 1921. The marriage took place at the First Methodist Church in Altus. John was honorably discharged just before Christmas of 1945 and they moved to Wichita Falls in Texas.

John found employment with the railroad, a job also held by Audrey's father. They were members of the Church of Christ of which Audrey was actively involved. Audrey was pregnant with their first child when the infant was born prematurely on September 6, 1946 and tragically lived less than two hours. They named her Linda Jane Ambrose. They had two more children, a son named John Ambrose Jr. and a daughter, Connie Ambrose. Both survived into adulthood.

Not much more is known about John, but Audrey was known for her love of country and gospel music, cooking and church activities. She learned to play piano at an early age. In her later years she would play gospel music on her radio in the living room and sing throughout the house. She continued to enjoy dancing into her 90th birthday where she celebrated with friends and family at The Senior Zone with a big cake and country line dancing.

John died in Wichita Falls on June 14, 2008. He was 90 years old. He was buried at Crestview Memorial Park in Wichita Falls. Audrey followed him in death on January 23, 2014 at the age of 92. She was buried with John at Crestview Memorial Park.

____________________ MARY AMBROSE ____________________

Although the family moved the 50 miles from Pittston to Orange in 1920, the next child, Mary Ambrose was born back in Pittston on October 22, 1920. We don't know exactly why this was. Perhaps Clara stayed back in Pittston for the pregnancy and joined Matthew and the others afterward. In any case, Mary left school after the seventh grade and was working in a factory when she married John Peter Havach on June 1, 1946. John was born in Swoyersville on June 28, 1917, the son of John Havach and Mary Stash. He served with the U. S. Army during World War II and was wounded in a battle for which he was awarded the Purple Heart. He was 5' 7" tall and weighed 150 pounds, with brown hair and eyes and a light complexion. They lived in Harding, Pennsylvania. At some point after 1954, John and Mary divorced.

John never remarried. He was employed as a machinist for the Sandvik Company in Mountain Top, located about 10 miles east of Nanticoke. He retired from Sandvik in 1980 and moved to Larksville, near Wilkes-Barre. Seven years later, he suffered a heart attack in his car and died on April 21, 1987. He was 69 years old. He was buried at the Slovak ethnic parish of Saint John Nepomucene Church Cemetery in Luzerne, of which he was a member.

On August 7, 1969, Mary was nearly 49 years old when she married John Anthony "Jack" Cerminaro. Jack was born in Carbondale, Pennsylvania on January 6, 1911. His parents were Joseph Cerminaro and Mary Perri. Jack was 5' 9" tall and weighed 175 pounds. He had brown hair, gray eyes and a light complexion. He had been married before to Alice Ross and they had two daughters and a son before she died in 1963. Jack worked for the Farview State Hospital in Waymart, Pennsylvania. He and Mary lived in Taylor, Pennsylvania. Mary worked for several cigar factories. They did not have any children.

Jack died at the age of 74 on December 14, 1985. He was buried at Mother of Sorrows Cemetery in Finch Hill, Pennsylvania. Twenty years later, Mary was a resident at Wesley Village Nursing Home in Jenkins Township when she died on August 10, 2005 at the age of 85. This was the same nursing home where Albina Ambrose died in 2001. Mary was buried with several of her other Ambrose family members at Denison Cemetery.

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____________________ LILLIAN AMBROSE ____________________

The first child to be born in Orange was Lillian H. Ambrose on March 23, 1922. Like most of her siblings, she never went beyond eighth grade in school. And like her sister Mary, she worked in a cigar factory, in her case the General Cigar Factory in Kingston. She was 23 years old when she married Edward Bernard Sadowski at Saint Mary's Church in Swoyersville on February 23, 1946. Edward was born in Swoyersville on New Year's Day in 1923. His parents were Joseph Sadowski and Alexandria Garwaczka. If you recall from above, Edward's sister Mary married Lillian's brother Nick Ambrose.

Edward enlisted in the U. S. Navy a few days after his 20th birthday in 1943 and served the rest of World War II in both the Pacific and European Theaters of Operation. He was honorably discharged in January of 1946, one month before the wedding. He was 5' 8" tall, weighed 150 pounds, with blonde hair and blue eyes and a light complexion.

Edward worked in various area coal mines and was self-employed as a plumbing and heating contractor. He and Lillian were members of Saint Mary's Church in Swoyersville. Edward also belonged to the Greater West Side Disabled American Veterans, Chapter 102. They lived at 1251 Shoemaker Street in West Wyoming. They had three children: Edward Sadowski, Jr., Lillian Sadowski, and Paulette Sadowski.

Lillian enjoyed working in her garden, family gatherings and spending time with her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She also made frequent trips to Atlantic City. Edward was 67 years old when he died right after Christmas on December 27, 1990. He was buried at Denison Cemetery. On July 8, 2006, 84-year-old Lillian died. She was buried with Edward at Denison Cemetery.

____________________ MATTHEW AMBROSE JR. ____________________

After Lillian's birth in 1922, the family moved from Orange to Franklin Township where Matthew Sr. started a fruit farm. Franklin Township is about 40 miles northeast of Orange and only 10 miles from Pittston. When Clara was ready to give birth to their seventh child, she traveled the 10 miles to Pittston to have it done. This is where Matthew "Matt" Ambrose Jr. was born on May 12, 1924. Matt attended Forest Grove Elementary School, completing the eighth grade. This would have been around 1938. Like his siblings, he helped his father run the farm. In February of 1943, Matthew Sr. developed pneumonia. He was 56 years old. He survived for 10 days then died on March 1, 1943. He was buried at Denison Cemetery.

Following Mathew Sr.'s death, Clara moved back to Pittston. Coming with her were 23-year-old Mary, 21-year-old Lillian, 18-year-old Matt, 15-year-old Jean, and 12-year-old Florence. After his 19th birthday in May, Matt enlisted in the U. S. Navy on July 23, 1943. He was a lanky 5' 9" tall and weighed 135 pounds. He had brown hair, brown eyes and a ruddy complexion. He also had a noticeable scar on his neck just below his left ear. He served for the duration of World War II, was honorably discharged and came home just before Christmas of 1945.

Back from the war, Matt found a job driving a truck for the Pittston Truck Company. On October 7, 1950, he married Dolores Theresa Walko, a coal miner's daughter who was born in Swoyersville on September 26, 1927. Her father was Joseph Walko, her mother Veronica Pywara. The wedding took place at Mother Cabrini's Church in Carverton. At the time of the wedding, Dolores was working for the United Pants Factory in Forty Fort. Following the wedding, they honeymooned in New England.

Matt eventually found employment with the Lehigh Valley Railroad, which is now Conrail. They continued living in Pittston and raised two children, Matthew S. Ambrose and Dolores M. Ambrose.

Matt died on February 15, 1994. He was 69 years old. There was no record of his final resting place. Dolores moved to Orange where her daughter lived and died there on April 26, 2005 at the age of 77. She was buried at Chapel Lawn Memorial Park in Dallas, Pennsylvania.

____________________ JEAN AMBROSE ____________________

Jean Ambrose was born in Pittston on October 20, 1927. When she was 15 years old, she met the love of her life, a baker named Angelo Henry Ceccacci. Angelo was born in Scranton on May 17, 1922, the son of Steven Ceccacci and Clotilda Bernardi. At the time that he and Jean met, he was enlisting into the U. S. Army, in 1942. He served for the duration of the war and was honorably discharged on August 26, 1945. A year later, on November 9, 1946, Jean and Angelo were married at the Blessed Sacrament Church in Center Moreland, Pennsylvania. When they applied for a marriage license on October 19, Jean was still 18 years old by one day. Since the age of consent was 21 at the time, Jean's mother Clara had to give her written consent to the marriage.

Jean and Angelo lived in Scranton. Throughout the years, Jean worked for Scranton Tobacco, Luce Luggage, a baker for the Scranton School and a school crossing guard. Like Angelo, she was a gifted baker and an excellent cook. She was known for bringing a dish and a smile to many dear friends who were sick or alone for the holidays. She and Angelo had a daughter, Phyllis Ceccacci.

On May 3, 2015 at the age of 87, Jean died at the Hospice of the Sacred Heart inpatient unit in Dunmore, Pennsylvania. She was buried at the Italian American Cemetery in Minooka, Pennsylvania.

Her obituary states she was preceded in death by sisters, Mary, Lillian and Hope. There was only one other sister that is documented and that is Philomena or "Florence" described below. As far as we know, Florence is still living. This reference to a Hope remains a mystery. None of the other obituaries mentions that name.

____________________ PHILOMENA AMBROSE ____________________

The ninth and final child born to Clara and Matthew was Philomena "Florence" Ambrose. She was born in Pittston in 1931. She was working in a cigar factory, just like Mary and Lillian, when she married George Gentile, the son of George Gentile and Rachel Manus. George was born in Pittston on March 28, 1926. He Graduated Pittston High School and Penn State School of Drafting. He was a four-year Navy veteran of World War II, serving honorably from May 20, 1943 to April 22, 1947. He was a Disabled American Veterans life member. After his discharge, he moved to Harding, Pennsylvania.

Like her sister Jean, Florence was too young (20) to get married without the written consent of her mother. The marriage took place at Saint Frances Cabrini Church (formerly Mother Cabrini church) in Carverton on July 8, 1950. Jean's 17-year-old niece, Betty Ambrose, was her maid of honor and her brother Matt Ambrose was best man. Following a reception, the couple left on a wedding trip through the Pocono Mountains and Jersey City. They took up residence in Pittston.

George was employed in the mining industry for 16 years, including as a blaster. He was a member of the Heavy Highway Labor Union Local 158 for 18 years. He and Florence had three sons, George Gentile, Michael Gentile and James Gentile. On April 3, 2000, George was 74 years old when he died in Pittston. He was buried at Memorial Shrine Cemetery in Carverton.

____________________ CLARA AMBROSE PASSING ____________________

Around 1950, Clara Ambrose developed Arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and chronic nephritis (inflammation of the kidneys). No longer able to take care of herself, she moved in with her daughter Mary in Harding, who was still married to her first husband John Havach at the time. In 1954, Clara developed Uremia when her kidneys could no longer function properly. She died at Mary's home on June 17, 1954. She was 63 years old. Following a service in Our Lady Of Mount Carmel church, she was buried at Denison Cemetery with Matthew.

____________________ DENISON CEMETERY ____________________

There are quite a few members of the Ambrose family buried at Denison Cemetery, located in Forty Fort, Pennsylvania, located about half way between Pittston and Nanticoke. Besides Matthew and Clara Ambrose, some of their children are also here: Mike Ambrose and his wife Albina DeMartino, plus their son Michael Ambrose Jr.; Nick Ambrose and his wife Mary Sadowski; Mary Ambrose Cerminaro; and Lillian Ambrose and her husband Edward Sadowski.

Albina's mother and father, Alfred DeMartino and Louise Trobacco (Troback) are here also, and Louise's parents Frank Trobacco and Concetta Balice, plus Louise's brother John Troback and his wife Mary, and their children Frank and Rosetta.

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After exploring the Augenti and Ambrose ancestry, we now come to the Trobacco and DeMartino branches of this tree. All of this revolves around Albina DeMartino's relationships to the Augenti and Ambrose families. Albina's parents were Alfredo DeMartino and Luisa Trobacco. The DeMartinos and Trobaccos all came from the Italian village of Serracapriola, located about 10 miles from the Adriatic coast of Southern Italy and about 890 feet above sea level. We will start with the Trobacco branch.

Back in the middle of the 19th Century, Giovanni Trobacco and his wife Luisa Sque had a son they named Francesco Antonio Trobacco, born in Serracapriola on March 17, 1859. Around 1884, Francesco was 26 years old when he married 16-year-old Concetta Balice. Concetta was born in Serracapriola on November 29, 1868. Her parents were Matteo Balice and Filomena Lo Bianco. Francesco and Concetta had ten children but only five survived into adulthood.

In 1904, Francesco left his family and set off for America with the hope of building a better life for them. He settled in the coal-mining area of Pennsylvania in the town of Pittston, where the Augenti and Ambrose families lived. On October 23, 1905, Concetta, who was just shy of her 34th birthday, left Italy aboard the S. S. Italia. Traveling with her were her four remaining children, 21-year-old Luisa Trobacco, Filomena Trobacco (16), Giovanni Trobacco (10) and Ernesto Trobacco (7). Also traveling with them was Luisa's husband Alfredo DeMartino. Alfredo was born in Serracapriola on March 5, 1877, the son of Michele DeMartino and Laura Miozzi. He and Luisa were married just before the voyage, which took them three weeks to complete. They arrived in New York City on November 13, 1905. Concetta's husband Francesco and Alfredo's parents were waiting for them at 248 Parsonage Street in Pittston. Later that same year, Concetta gave birth to their tenth and final child, Elvira Trobacco, known to the family as Vera.

Francesco Americanized his name to Frank and found work in the coal mines. By 1910, they moved a few doors down to 276 Parsonage Street, which no longer exists today. At some point, in particular with the succeeding generation, the Trobacco surname was changed to Troback. By 1920, Frank was working as a baker for a macaroni manufacturer. He and Concetta were members of Our Lady Of Mount Carmel Roman Catholic Church in Pittston.

____________________ FILOMENA "MINNIE" TROBACCO ____________________

Filomena was born in Serracapriola on May 17, 1889. She was 16 years old when she arrived to America with her mother and siblings in 1905. She soon adopted the name of Minnie. A year later, she was living with her family at 248 Parsonage Street when she married a musician, Professor Anthony Bruno. The marriage took place at Our Lady of Mount Carmel church on October 25, 1906. Anthony was born in Italy on July 29, 1874. That would make him 32 years old when they married, and Minnie was only 17. She had to get a consent to marry from her father. She was described in the newspaper as "an accomplished young Italian lady."

Anthony had his own music school in Pittston and was the leader of the "Bruno Italian Band." Immediately after the wedding, a party was held at their newly furnished home on South Main Street, where the guests were entertained by the Professor's band. Anthony was a graduate of the Boulogne Conservatory of Music in France and arrived in America in 1901 and settled in Pittson. Besides his band, he was also the conductor of the Saint Rocco's church band and the Holy Rosary church band in Wilkes-Barre.

From South Main Street, they moved to Parsonage Street. They moved up and down the street several times before settling at 204 Parsonage Street. They were members of Our Lady Of Mount Carmel Catholic Church. Minnie was also a member of the Altar and Rosary Society and the Pittson Hospital Auxiliary. They had five sons before Anthony died on August 6, 1926. The circumstances of his death were quite bizarre. On the Fourth of July of that year, Anthony became very ill and was transported to the insane asylum in nearby Ransom. His diagnosis was "General Paralysis of the Insane", or GPI, a devastating and incurable psychiatric disease that was 100% fatal at the time. Anthony died just one week after his 52nd birthday. It wasn't until 1940 and the clinical use of penicillin that the disease became treatable. Anthony was buried at Saint John's Cemetery in Pittston. At the time, Minnie was 37 years old and the sons ranged from 6 to 20.

Shortly after Anthony's death, Minnie moved to an apartment at 5 Nails Avenue in White Plains, New York with all five of her sons. They shared the apartment with another large family headed by Rocco and Elizabeth Pellegrino. This mysterious arrangement was temporary and by 1933 they were back in Pittston.


Minnie and Anthony's first son was Joseph Nunzio Bruno, born in Pittston on October 12, 1907. At the time of his birth, they were living at 226 Parsonage Street. Joseph was educated in Pittston City schools and graduated from Lebanon Valley College and Georgetown University School of Medicine. He initially set up a general practice and eventually specialized in radiology. He was 5' 10" tall, weighed 180 pounds with brown hair and eyes and a dark complexion. He was a member of the American Medical Association, the Pennsylvania Medical Society, the Fox Hill Country Club and a member of Saint Anthony of Padua Catholic church in Exeter, Pennsylvania.

On November 13, 1933, Dr. Bruno married a Registered Nurse named Josephine Di Geso in Saint Agnes Roman Catholic church in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania. Lock Haven is located 100 miles west of Pittston. Josephine was born there on May 1, 1911. Her parents were Dominick Di Geso and Leona Petrucci. Josephine was a graduate of Lock Haven High School and Saint Agnes Nursing School in Philadelphia. Initially, they lived with Minnie at 208 Parsonage Street, the house she moved to after White Plains, and next to the house where Minnie and Professor Bruno lived in 1910.

Like Joseph's parents, they became members of the Mount Carmel church in Pittston. Josephine was also a member of the Saint Lucy Fillipini Society, a Catholic religious institution devoted to education, and like Minnie, she was a member of the Pittston Hospital Auxiliary. She and Joseph had nine children. In 1955, they moved across the river to 1304 Susquehanna Avenue in West Pittston. At some point, Minnie moved in with them in order for them to care for her. Eventually, however, they had to place her in the Heritage House nursing home in Wilkes-Barre. She died there on March 4, 1982 at the age of 92. This was 55 years after the death of her husband, Professor Anthony Bruno. She was buried at Saint Rocco's church cemetery in Pittston. At the time of her death, she had 21 grandchildren and 43 great-grandchildren.

After 50 years as a physician, Joseph retired. They were still living at their home on Susquehanna Avenue when Josephine died there on January 9, 1996. She was 84 years old. A year later, Joseph was moved to the Hospice St. John Unit of Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center in Plains Township where he died on February 13, 1997, at the age of 89. They were buried together at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Carverton.


Minnie and Anthony had moved down the street to 154 Parsonage Street when their second son, Francesco "Frank" Saverio Bruno, was born on April 28, 1909. While he attended Pittston schools, Frank dropped out after the ninth grade and became involved in construction, working primarily as a carpenter. He worked for his Uncle Ernesto Trobacco's construction company and later for the Tabone and Barbera Construction Company. He was a heavyset man, weighing 215 pounds and 5' 7" in height. He had gray eyes, brown hair and a ruddy complexion.

Frank was 25 years old and living with his mother at 208 Parsonage Street when he married Marguerite Irving in Scranton, Pennsylvania on June 30, 1934. Marguerite, or Marge, was the daughter of John P. Irving and Edith Smith. She was born in Scranton on October 9, 1913. She and Frank moved into his parents' old home at 204 Parsonage Street, next to where Minnie was now living. Frank and Marge had one child, a daughter named Lorraine Bruno. Lorraine was born in Scranton on October 20, 1932, two years before her parents were married. During World War II, Marge worked at the Philadelphia Rail Yards.

Lorraine graduated from Saint John's High School in Pittston and the Jefferson Hospital School of Nursing in Philadelphia. As a Registered Nurse, she enlisted in the U. S. Naval Nurse Corps, stationed in Portsmouth, Virginia. Ensign Bruno's naval service took her to distant parts of the world, including Chile. There she met and fell in love with a doctor serving in the Chilean Navy as a Lieutenant Commander. This was Fernando DeAraya Wilson. He was born in Valparaiso, Chile on August 3, 1929, the only child of Jose Luis DeAraya and Louise De Saldes Wilson. Fernando graduated from Mackay School, Catholic University and the State University of Chile. He completed his post-graduate work in surgery in Europe.

Lorraine and Fernando were married in the Catholic Naval Chapel in Vina Del Mar, Chile on January 11, 1958. Lorraine's mother Marge flew down to attend the wedding. She found the 32-hour plane trip "a little rough at times but generally wonderful." At first, the couple established residency in Chile, but after Fernando was discharged from the Navy, the couple returned to the Pittston area and Ferdinand changed his surname to Araya. He established a private practice in West Pittston and later in Forty Fort. He was also affiliated with Wyoming Valley Hospital in Wilkes-Barre, the Pittston Hospital, the Nesbitt Hospital in Kingston, and the Wilkes-Barre General Hospital. He also served as medical director for the U. S. Postal Service at the Wilkes-Barre mail processing station, and he was the FAA Medical Officer giving flight physicals for many years. Incredibly, he was also a private pilot and race car driver, but later in life his greatest pleasures were reading and spending time with his family. He and Lorraine had four children.

A few days after Christmas of 1963, Dr. Araya was called to the home of Lorraine's parents where her father Frank had suffered a heart attack. He did not survive and died at the age of 54 on December 27, 1963. He was buried at Mount Olive Cemetery in Carverton.

When Fernando retired in 1998, after 40 years as a physician, he and Lorraine moved to Pompano Beach, Florida. Lorraine died there at the age of 70 on March 11, 2003. Fernando followed her a year later on June 20, 2004. He was 74 years old. They both chose to be cremated.

Lorraine's mother Marge outlived them all. After Frank died in 1963, she worked as a Nurse's Aide at Valley Crest Nursing Home in Plains Township. She was an avid bingo player and an active member of the Forty Fort Senior Citizens Club. She was 92 years old and living at Highland Manor in Exeter when she died at VNA Hospice Inpatient Unit at Heritage House in Wilkes-Barre on February 28, 2006. Forty-two years after Frank's death, she finally joined him at Mount Olive Cemetery.


Alphonse Henry Leo Bruno, Minnie and Anthony's third child, was born in Pittston on May 2, 1911. They were now living at 346 Parsonage Street. Alphonse, who was known as Al, graduated Pittston High School and William and Mary College in Williamsburg, Virginia in 1937. While attending classes at the college, he was a member of Alpha Phi Delta and played for three years on the school football team. Also attending classes at William and Mary was Ruth Christine Butt, who graduated in 1935 with a Bachelor of Science degree and went into teaching at South Norfolk, Virginia High School. Ruth was born in South Norfolk on December 10, 1912. Her parents were Hunter G. Butt and Lena H. Tatem.

Al went on to become a special agent for the Prudential Insurance Company. He was 5' 11" tall, weighing 210 pounds, with black hair, brown eyes and a dark complexion. On April 23, 1938, he and Ruth were married at Saint Matthew's Roman Catholic Church in Berkeley, Virginia. They took up residence on Raleigh Avenue in Norfolk, Virginia but quickly moved to Pittston and rented the apartment at 206 Parsonage Street, right next to Al's brother Frank and his wife Marguerite, and his mother Minnie.

On January 13, 1939, Ruth gave birth to their first child, Alphonse Henry Leo Bruno, Jr.. At some point they moved back to Norfolk. They had seven more children.

Alphonse Jr., also known as Al, began his medical education with pre-med studies at Norfolk Division of William and Mary College. He joined the Navy Medical Corps in 1961 and graduated from the Medical College of Virginia in 1965 followed by a general rotating internship at Great Lakes Naval Hospital in Illinois. In 1966-67, Dr. Bruno was the medical officer on the USS Nereus Submarine Tender out of San Diego. From 1967-68 he was the doctor of gynecology at the Little Creek Amphibious Base Dispensary in Norfolk. In 1968-71 he completed his residency training in obstetrics and gynecology at DePaul Hospital and the medical College of Virginia. For the next 38 years, he was in private practice. In 1965, he married Maureen Edna McMahon. They had six children before divorcing in 1984. On June 21, 2009, at the age of 70, Al Jr. died, in Virginia Beach.

Ruth and Al Sr. were living at 5776 Normandy Avenue in Virginia Beach, Virginia where Al was working as a special service officer at Fort Monroe in Hampton, Virginia when he suffered a heart attack and died at Sentara Leigh Hospital on February 3, 1978. He was 66 years old. He was buried at Rosewood Memorial Park in Virginia Beach. Later, Ruth moved to Norfolk, where she died at the age of 88 on September 7, 1994. She was buried with Al at Rosewood Memorial Park.


A year after Alphonse was born, his brother Arthur Ralph Bruno arrived. He was born in Pittston on June 19, 1912. Like his brother Frank, he dropped out of school after the ninth grade. He was working as a salesman for the Kelly and Mullin furniture store in Pittston when he enlisted in the U. S. Air Force, just before his 29th birthday, on June 3, 1941. He was 5' 7" in height and weighed 150 pounds. He had black hair and brown eyes with a ruddy complexion.

Arthur served for five years, for part of that time in the Burmese-India area. After his honorable discharge on March 31, 1946, he used the G. I. Bill to enter college at the University of Oklahoma and graduated with a degree in Electrical Engineering. He never married. In 1989, he was living in the Merry Manor Nursing Home at 220 Dunn Road East in New Carlisle, Indiana when he developed a septic bacterial infection that caused him to have a heart attack and he died on November 1, 1989. He was 77 years old and chose to be cremated. His younger brother Anthony lived at 52120 Patricia Lane in South Bend Indiana at the time of his death. South Bend is 15 miles east of New Carlisle.


Several years after Arthur's birth, Minnie and Anthony welcomed their fifth and final son, Anthony John Vincent Bruno. He was born in Pittston on September 22, 1919. Like his brothers Frank and Arthur, he dropped out of school after the ninth grade. By 1939, he was living in Kimball, South Dakota. Why he was there at this time is a mystery, but he had the opportunity to meet a 17-year-old farmer's daughter named Eileen Marie Fascher. Eileen was born in Kimball on December 21, 1921, the daughter of Ehrich Ewald Fascher and Elda Maria Putzier. When Anthony met Eileen, she and her family were living in Waldro, South Dakota, located just outside Kimball.

One month after his 20th birthday, on October 26, 1939, Anthony enlisted in the U. S. Army and served during the entire World War II. On September 21, 1945, one month after the war ended, he was honorably discharged from the army. He moved back to Pittston to his mother at 208 Parsonage Street. A year later, however, he married Eileen, in Washington, D. C., on October 19, 1946. They moved back to Kimball and raised three children.

At some later point in time, Anthony and Eileen moved to South Bend, Indiana, and later to Bella Vista, Arkansas. They were living there when Anthony died a few weeks before his 80th birthday, on September 3, 1999. There was no funeral service. Eileen moved to Rogers, Arkansas to be closer to one of her sons who lived in nearby Lowell. She was eventually sent to the Circle Of Life Hospice in Springdale, just south of Lowell, where she died on July 29, 2009. She was 89 years old. She chose to be cremated.

____________________ GIOVANNI "JOHN" TROBACCO ____________________

Frank and Concetta's next child after Minnie was Luisa Trobacco. But, since she married a DeMartino, we will discuss her life later. Instead, we will explore the family history of the third child, Giovanni Trobacco, born in Serracapriola on July 14, 1895. He was 10 years old when he arrived to America with his mother and siblings in 1905. He soon adopted the name of John. He did not have any formal schooling in Italy and did not attend school in America. Nevertheless, he was able to read and write. He was 15 years old and living with his parents at 346 Parsonage Street in Hughestown, Pennsylvania in 1910 and had been working as a "slate picker" or "breaker boy" for a coal mine. By 1920, when he was 25, he had a job as a machinist for the Vulcan Iron Company in West Pittston. He quickly improved on his career options when he was hired as an insurance agent by a Federal agency in Philadelphia.

John had dark brown hair and light blue eyes, of medium height (5' 8") and medium build. In 1923, he was 28 years old and living in a small building at 219 Parsonage Street. The larger front part of the house was 217 Parsonage Street, where Nickolas DeMartino and his wife Assunta (DiLaurentis) lived. Information about how Nickolas might be related to Albina DeMartino has proven to be quite elusive. However, Nickolas and Assunta had an 18-year-old daughter named Mary DeMartino who was born in West Pittston on October 15, 1905. On June 14, 1923, John and Mary were married, after Mary's father gave his consent. They lived at 219 Parsonage Street for the rest of their lives.

John was co-owner of the Troback and Burke Insurance Agency. He served on the Pittston City Council from 1932 to 1936 and was a member of the Pittston Lodge of Protective Order of Elks and Loyal Order of Moose. He was also co-owner of the Troback Construction Company, responsible for the construction of the Slocum Hollow housing development across the river in Exeter. He and Mary belonged to the Mount Carmel church in Pittston. By the time he was in his late forties, John's weight had ballooned to more than 220 pounds. He was now also blind in his left eye and wore a patch over it.

Mary was a member of the Wyoming Valley Chapter of the Red Cross, the Pittston Hospital Ladies Auxiliary, the Jolly Nine Card Club, the Mount Carmel church Altar and Rosary Society in Pittston.

John and Mary had a son and four daughters.


Their first born was a son named Frank Troback, born in Pittston on June 13, 1926. After graduating from Pittston High School and one week after his 18th birthday, he enlisted in the U. S. Navy. It was June 22, 1944, just two weeks after the D-Day Allied Invasions of Normandy. He served for two years and was honorably discharged on August 21, 1946. He was 6' tall and weighed 185 pounds, with brown hair, gray eyes and a ruddy complexion. He attended King's College then went on to Syracuse University where he earned a law degree.

On April 27, 1957, Frank married Elizabeth Louise Shirk at Our Lady Of Mount Carmel church in Pittston. Elizabeth was born in Lebanon, Pennsylvania on May 1, 1930. Her parents were Allen E. Shirk and Margaret Light. After graduating Lebanon High School in 1948, Elizabeth earned a Registered Nursing degree from the Thomas Jefferson University School of Nursing, class of 1951. She was employed by Dr. Harold Scheie, a well-known eye surgeon in Philadelphia. For their honeymoon, Frank and Elizabeth drove to New York City where they spent a few days before flying to Bermuda where they stayed for several weeks. Upon their return, they established their home at 7 York Avenue in West Pittston where they raised two daughters.

Besides his work as an attorney, Frank served as the Exalted Ruler of the Pittston Elks Lodge and president of the UNICO Club, an Italian-American service organization, in Wilkes-Barre. In 1967, they moved 120 miles south to Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Frank worked for the Ranck and Ranck law firm in Lancaster. He and Elizabeth became members of Saint Anthony's Church in Lancaster. They were living at 1611 Esbenshade Road in the Lancaster retirement community of Calvary Fellowship Homes when Frank suffered a heart attack on September 8, 1988 and died at the Lancaster General Hospital. He was 62 years old. He was buried at Denison Cemetery in Swoyersville.

Elizabeth worked at the Calvary Fellowship Homes and was a receptionist at the Country Meadows retirement community in West Lancaster. At some point she moved 50 miles west to be with her two daughters who lived in Mechanicsburg and Dillsburg, Pennsylvania. Eventually, she had to be placed in the Claremont Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in nearby Carlisle. That was where she died on March 12, 2016 at the age of 85. She was buried at Dillsburg Cemetery.


John and Mary's second child, Elvira Concetta Troback, was born in Pittston on May 20, 1928. The family called her Vera. She was probably named after her aunt, John's younger sister Elvira Trobacco, who we will learn more about later.

Vera graduated Pittston Central Catholic High School, the private Catholic College Misericordia in Dallas, Pennsylvania, and the Mayo Clinic School of Physical Therapy in Rochester, Minnesota. On November 28, 1953, she married Harding Anthony Chiavacci in Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Pittston. The best man was Vera's brother Frank Troback. Bridesmaids were her sisters Yolanda Troback and Rosetta Troback and cousins Lorraine Bruno and Elizabeth "Betty" Ambrose.

While Vera lived with her parents at 219 Parsonage Street in Pittston, the Chiavacci family lived barely two blocks away at 295 Parsonage Street, which was located in Hughestown. Harding was born in Hughestown on May 12, 1924. His parents were Leopoldo "Leo" Chiavacci and Santina Casseri. He graduated Hughestown High School and West Chester State Teachers College. He was 5' 9" tall and weighed 145 pounds. His eyes were brown, his hair black and he had a dark complexion. He also had a noticeable 3-inch scar on his left leg. He was sometimes known by the name Deno. On May 29, 1943, he enlisted in the U. S. Army and served in Europe until his discharge on December 5, 1945. Following the war, he became a claims adjuster for the Calvert Fire Insurance Company in Philadelphia.

Vera and Harding took up residence in Philadelphia and raised three sons and one daughter. At some point they moved to 25 Griffith Street in Hughestown. They attended the Blessed Sacrament Church in Hughestown and became members of the Sons Of Italy, Pittston Lodge. Harding was a member of the Hughestown Sports Club, the Penn State Nittany Lions Club, and the V.F.W. Post 4909 in Dupont. Vera taught school at Old Forge, Duryea and Pittston area high schools from 1970 to 1990, and at Saint Michael's in Levittown. Harding was employed as an administrator at Clarks Summit State Hospital.

They were still living at 25 Griffith Street when, on November 21, 1990, Vera died at the age of 62. She was buried at West Pittston Cemetery. Several years later, Harding died at the home on December 4, 1996. He was 72 years old. He was buried with Vera at West Pittston Cemetery.


On October 7, 1929, John and Mary welcomed their third child. They named her Rosetta Troback. On January 6, 1933, when she was three years old, she came down with lobar pneumonia. Six days later, at 3 in the morning of January 16, she died at home. She was buried at Denison Cemetery in Forty Fort.


Two years before little Rosetta died, Mary gave birth to their fourth child. They named her Yolanda Philomena Troback. She was born in Pittston on January 11, 1931. Like her sister Vera, she graduated Pittston Central Catholic High School and College Misericordia, but then went on to the Bronx Veterans Hospital, School of Dietetic Internship.

A year after her sister Vera got married, Yolanda did the same thing by marrying William Griffin Hoban on October 16, 1954, in the same church, Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Her sister Rosetta Troback (the next one, born after Yolanda) and cousin Claire Ambrose were among the bridesmaids.

William, or Will as he was called, was born in Hughestown on September 15, 1928, the son of Richard Hoban and Matilda Dooner. They were a large family. Will was the youngest of seven brothers and four sisters. They lived at 14 Kenley Street in Hughestown. Tragedy struck the family in June of 1929 when their father, a conductor for the Lehigh Valley Railroad, was run over and killed by a train in the railyard at Laceyville. He was only 45 years old. Will wasn't even one year old. Matilda carried on as best she could for seven years. She was 51 years old when she died a few days after Christmas in 1936 of cirrhosis of the liver. Will was only 8 years old then. His brother Martin Hoban, the oldest and still living at home, was 30.

After graduating Hughestown High School, Will enlisted in the U. S. Army and served during the Korean Conflict. Following his discharge from the Army, he was employed with the Maxson printing company in Old Forge.

Yolanda and Will lived in West Pittston and the nearby town of Exeter, across the Susquehanna River from Hughestown. Eventually, they ended up at 4 Troback Drive in Exeter, in a community built by her father. Will worked as an insurance agent. He was 5' 9" tall and weighed 130 pounds. He had black hair, blue eyes and a ruddy complexion. Yolanda worked as a nutrionist and was in charge of the dietary department at Drexell University. She was well-known locally for being the Head of the Wyoming Area Taxpayers Forum and for writing letters to various newspapers questioning the use of taxpayer's money to pay for what she considered non-essential school activities, such as sports and band. Yolanda and Will did not have children.

On a cold Sunday afternoon in December, a week before Christmas in 2000, Yolanda and Will were evacuated from their home following a tremendous gas explosion that completely destroyed another home nearby. The residents of the home were away at the time, and no one was injured.

Will outlived his brothers and sisters but eventually became ill and was placed in the Highland Manor Nursing Center in Exeter where he died on January 4, 2013. He was 84 years old. Yolanda followed him two years later. She was 84 when she died at home on March 30, 2015.


A year after baby Rosetta died in 1933, Mary gave birth to their fifth and final child, and they decided to name her Rosetta Helen Troback. She was born in Pittston on January 28, 1934. She attended Saint Mary's Assumption School, Saint John's High School and Syracuse University, then graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from Misericordia University. The university, located in Dallas, Pennsylvania, also recorded the graduations of Rosetta's sisters Vera and Yolanda. Here is a newspaper tribute to the three sisters in 1952.

Rosetta went on to Mercy Hospital School of Nursing and became a Registered Nurse. She worked as an RN and then later as a pediatrics nursing instructor at Allied School of Nursing where a scholarship was actually named in her honor. Her primary focus and concentration was always on the caring for and treatment of sick children.

On November 16, 1957, Rosetta married Paul Robert McNulty at Our Lady of Mount Carmel church in Pittston. Paul graduated Holy Saviour School and Coughlin High School in Wilkes-Barre and was discharged from the U. S. Navy just prior to the wedding. He was born in Wilkes-Barre on May 22, 1934. His father was John McNulty and his mother Mary L. Casey. At the time of the wedding, he was employed by the International Color Printing Company in Wilkes-Barre. Paul then attended, graduated and became an instructor at the Johnson School of Technology in Scranton. He later became manager of the mechanical department of Proctor & Gamble Company, a job he held for 25 years.

Rosetta and Paul had two sons. They lived at 7 Troback Drive in Exeter, near Rosetta's sister Yolanda, until 1995 when they moved to 1109 Baxter Drive in Plano, Texas, to be near their sons and their families. Rosetta was 73 years old when she died on October 19, 2007. Paul followed her just three weeks later on November 8, 2007. He was 73. Ironically, they were both born within a few months of one another and died a few weeks apart. They are buried together at the Dallas-Fort Worth National Cemetery in Dallas, Texas.


John and Mary were still living at 219 Parsonage Street when he died at the age of 76 on September 23, 1971. He was buried at Denison, Cemetery in Swoyersville. Mary continued living at the home for many more years. In 1995, she became too ill to stay by herself and was placed at the Mountain Rest Nursing Home in Scranton. She died there two years later on April 28, 1997. She was 91 years old. She was buried with John at Denison Cemetery.

____________________ ERNESTO "ERNEST" TROBACCO ____________________

When Ernesto Vincenzo Trobacco arrived in Pittston in 1905 with his mother and his siblings, he was just seven years old. He was born in Serracapriola on November 28, 1898. He attended Pittston Schools and became engaged as a carpenter and building contractor. Known more familiarly as Ernest, he was a member of Our Lady Of Sorrow church in West Wyoming and the Elks Club in West Pittston.

Ernest was living with his parents at 219 Parsonage Street and going by the name Troback when he married a bookkeeper and teacher named Gretchen D. Wintle on April 22, 1925. Gretchen was born in West Pittston on December 13, 1898, the daughter of trainman Joseph Wintle and Tillie Stutz. The Wintles lived at 300 Susquehanna Avenue across the river in West Pittston. They belonged to the Luzerne Avenue Baptist Church in West Pittston. Gretchen was once a member of the church's Baptist Young People's Union serving on the missionary committee and served as a member of the West Pittston Salvation Army. She graduated Bloomsburg State Teachers College and taught in West Pittston and New Jersey.

Ernest and Gretchen lived with his parents at 219 Parsonage Street. A daughter, Gretchen Dorcas Troback, was born on April 1, 1927.

In July of 1931, Gretchen took her 4-year-old daughter and moved back with her parents and sued Ernest for divorce on the grounds of "cruel treatment." The divorce was recorded on August 7, 1931. Gretchen changed her name back to Wintle.

Ten years later, Ernest was still working as a building contractor when he moved across the river from Pittston to Wyoming. He was 44 years old when he remarried, to another bookkeeper, 40-year-old Mary Catherine Connors, on April 10, 1942. It was her first marriage.

Mary was born in Pittston in 1902. Her parents were Thomas Joseph Connors and Elizabeth Gilmartin. She was a graduate of Saint John The Evangelist business school and a member of the Saint Mary Help of Christians Church in Pittston. She and Ernest lived at 214 East Eighth Street in Wyoming.

Gretchen and her daughter moved to 61 West South Street in Wilkes-Barre where Gretchen became the traffic manager at Pomeroy's Department Store. Her daughter, Gretchen Dorcas Troback, attended high school eight miles away back in West Pittston, and like her mother she graduated from Bloomsburg State Teachers College and attended Temple University. She found employment as a speech therapist at the Woods Schools in Langhorne, Pennsylvania.

On May 31, 1952, Gretchen (the daughter) married Colin Bowen McLain in the Methodist Church in Langhorne. Colin was born in Dorchester, Massachusetts on February 5, 1924, the son of Colin Frederick McLain and Margaret Frances Oliver. After finishing high school in Dorchester, he entered Northeastern College in Boston, but dropped out after one year to enlist in the Army on November 30, 1942. He served as a Lieutenant in the number 1393 Engineers Battalion in Japan and the Philippines. Following his honorable discharge, he returned to Northeastern to earn his degree in engineering. He was 5' 9" tall and weighed 140 pounds, with blonde hair, brown eyes and a light complexion, and he wore eyeglasses. He was employed as chief engineer for the W. Spencer Erwin Civil Engineering and Surveying Firm at Fallsington, Pennsylvania, located several miles east of Langhorne.

For a short time Gretchen and Colin lived at 301 Pine Street in Langhorne before moving to the small town of Franklinville in southern New Jersey. They had one son, Colin William McLain. One very foggy morning, on August 26, 1959, Colin was driving to work when his car was struck by a train at a crossing in nearby Clayton, New Jersey. He was killed instantly. He was only 35 years old. His son was five years old. He was buried at the National Cemetery in Beverly, New Jersey.

Gretchen recovered from the tragedy and became an English teacher at the Delsea Regional High School in Franklinville. She was president of the Franklinville Parent-Teacher Association during the 1960's. In September of 1962, her 63-year-old mother, who was still working for Pomeroy's Department Store, became ill and was taken to the Wilkes-Barre General Hospital. She was a patient there for three weeks, suffering from periapical vascular collapse and a fractured spine before she died on October 7, 1962. She was buried at West Pittston Cemetery. Several years after that, her father Ernest, who was still living at 214 East Eighth Street in Wyoming and suffering from heart disease and stomach cancer, died at the Wyoming Valley Hospital on August 18, 1968. He was 69 years old. The pallbearers at his funeral included Lorraine Bruno's husband, Dr. Fernando Araya, and her brother, Anthony Bruno. Ernest was laid to rest at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Carverton.

Ernest's second wife, Mary, moved to 138 Cornelia Street in her birth town of Pittston in 1972. Five years later, she was 74 years old when she died in the Nesbitt Memorial Hospital on March 25, 1977. She was buried with Ernest at Mount Olivet Cemetery.

A year after her father's death, in July of 1969, Gretchen took her 15-year-old son Colin on a month-long vacation through England, Scotland and Wales. In 1976 she served as a chairperson of the Franklin Township Bicentennial Committee, and in 1981, she joined the Franklin Township Historical Society and eventually became its chairperson. In her spare time, she enjoyed gardening, reading, crossword puzzles, genealogy, and spending time with friends.

After 27 years teaching English at the high school, Gretchen retired in 1981. She was 87 years old when she died on January 23, 2015. After fifty-five years, she finally joined her husband Colin at the National Cemetery in Beverly.

____________________ ELVIRA "VERA" TROBACCO ____________________

Here we have another Elvira Trobacco, not to be confused with the other one, Elvira "Vera" Troback Chiavacci, the daughter of John and Mary Trobacco and the niece of this one. Elvira Trobacco, also known as "Vera" like her aunt, was the tenth and final child born to Frank and Concetta (Balice) Trobacco. She was also the only one of the children born in America, in Pittston on December 9, 1906. This was eight years after the last child, Ernesto. Although Frank and Concetta were living at 219 Parsonage Street at the time, Concetta gave birth to Vera at the home of her oldest daughter Minnie, who was at 226 Parsonage Street, and living with her new husband, Professor Anthony Bruno.

Vera graduated Hughestown High School and was a member of Saint Rocco's Catholic church in Pittston. On September 30, 1928, she married a local butcher named Frank John Occhiato at Saint Rocco's church. Frank was born in Pittston on November 28, 1907. the son of Frank Occhiato and Catherine Massaro. The Occhiato's lived at 198 East Railroad Street in Pittston and that's where Vera and Frank lived.

After the wedding, Vera and Frank, along with Vera's oldest sister Minnie and Minnie's youngest son Anthony Bruno, who was about 9 years old, left for a tour of New York City and Washington, D.C.

Besides being a butcher, Frank was the owner and operator of the Eureka Market at 14 Fulton Street in Pittston. He stood 5' 6" tall, weighed 165 pounds, with brown hair and eyes and a dark complexion. He and Vera were members of Saint Rocco's church. In 1941, they moved to 155 Pine Street, a few blocks away from their home on East Railroad Street. Eventually, they moved to 46 Oak Street, not far from their original home at East Railroad Street. This area of Pittston was known as Browntown.

Vera and Frank had three daughters.


Their first daughter was Katherine Marie Occhiato. She was born in Pittston on October 12, 1929. Following her graduation from Pittston High School, she worked at her father's Eureka Market. She was 19-years-old when she married, with her mother's written consent, a plumber named Michael Carmen Mecadon, Jr. on July 2, 1949. The wedding took place at Saint Rocco's Church. Michael, who was known affectionately as "Junior", was born in Pittston on March 17, 1926. His parents, who were originally from the nearby town of Old Boston, were Michael C. Mecadon Sr. and Angeline Chaump. They lived at 652 William Street in Pittston, which no longer exists, today.

Junior was 5' 7.5" tall and weighed 150 pounds. He had brown hair and eyes with a ruddy complexion and a scar on his forehead. Prior to the marriage, he served during World War II in the U.S. Navy as an electrician third class. He eventually became a self-employed plumbing, heating and electrical contractor, a career that spanned 50 years. He was a member of the Veterans Of Foreign Wars, the Pittston Township Lions and the Fides Club at Saint Rocco's church. He was an avid golfer. He and Katherine had a son and a daughter.

On October 29, 2007, at the age of 81, Junior died in Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center in Plains Township. He was buried in Saint Rocco's Cemetery. Several years later, Katherine died on May 17, 2013 at the same hospital as her husband. She was 83 years old. She was buried with Junior at Saint Rocco's Cemetery.


Vera and Frank's second daughter was Helen M. Occhiato, born in Pittston on January 22, 1932. Following her graduation from Pittston High School and the Empire Beauty School, she became the owner and operator of her own beauty shop in the Browntown section of Pittston. She was a member of Saint Rocco's Church and its Christian Mothers Society.

Nearly six months after her 21st birthday, Helen married Michael James Fasciana on the Fourth of July in 1953 at Saint Rocco's Church. Her younger sister Rosemary served as her maid of honor, while he older sister Katherine, now married to Michael Mecadon, and her cousin Betty Ambrose, were bridesmaids.

Michael, or Mike as he was more commonly known, was born in Pittston on March 20, 1927. His parents were Gaetano "Guy" Fasciana and Maria De Francesco. They lived at 183 South Main Street in Pittston, another place that does not exist today. Mike was 5' 6" tall, weighing 135 pounds, with brown hair and eyes and a ruddy complexion. He served in the U.S. Army as a sergeant during World War II.

Mike had a long and varied career in the medical field. After graduating the University of Scranton with a bachelor’s degree in biology, he then went on and graduated from Catholic University and Thomas Jefferson University with master's degrees in microbiology, anatomy and physiology. He worked for 30 years for the Federal Government in the laboratory as a medical technologist at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Plains Township. He was also employed for 15 years by Mercy Hospital and Nantikoke State Hospital. He also worked Duryea Clinical Labs with his son, Dr. Guy Fasciana and the Intermountain Medical Group until his official retirement in 2009. In his spare time, he enjoyed gardening and golfing through his membership at the Fox Hill Country Club in Exeter. He and Helen enjoyed family vacations in Myrtle Beach in South Carolina. Somehow, he still found time to serve as a Fourth-degree Knight with the Knights Of Columbus, JFK Council in Pittston and membership in the Sera Defalco Society.

Helen and Mike had five children. At first, they lived with Helen's family at 198 East Railroad Street. Later, they moved to 238 South Main Street. Besides her beauty shop, Helen also worked in the handbags and jewelry departments at Pomeroy's Department Store.

They were living at the Wesley Village United Methodist Homes independent and assisted-living facility in Pittston when Mike died at the Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center in Plains Township. It was Christmas Day of 2012. He was 85 years old. He was buried at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Carverton. Not long after, Helen was 82 when she died surrounded by her family at her home on June 5, 2014. She was buried with Mike at Mount Olivet Cemetery.

Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center was also where two other members of the family died: Minnie and Professor Anthony Bruno's son Dr. Joseph Bruno in 1997; and Helen's brother-in-law Junior Mecadon in 2007.


The third and last daughter born to Vera and Frank was Rosemary Occhiato, in Pittston on October 2, 1934. Following her graduation from Pittston High School she went on to receive a degree as a Registered Nurse from the Pittston Hospital School of Nursing. She worked as a private duty nurse. Like her sister Helen, she was married on the Fourth of July, in 1956, to John Chimento, Jr. And, like everyone else in the family, the wedding took place at Saint Rocco's Church. They spent their honeymoon in Miami Beach and Havana, Cuba.

John was born in Yatesville, Pennsylvania, a small town just south of the Brownsville section of Pittston. His date of birth was December 21, 1929. His parents were John Chimento and Marie Carmelia Martino. The Chimentos lived at 1 Hale Street in Yatesville. John graduated Jenkins Township High School and enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served overseas. Following his discharge, he found employment as an insurance agent with the Home Life Insurance Company and he also worked for the Pepsi-Cola Company. He was 5' 6" tall, weighing between 135 and 140 pounds with brown hair and eyes and a dark complexion.

John was a devout Catholic. According to his brother James, he didn't drink or gamble. He belonged to Saint Rocco's Church and the Knights of Columbus Pittston Council 372 and the Fides Club. He was commander of the Veterans Of Foreign Wars Post 7846. In fact, he was one of the founders of the Pittston VFW, the VFW Bowling League, and the Pittston Little League. He worked almost single-handedly maintaining the Little League. He was a very active civic volunteer and well-liked by everyone. For several years, he worked as chairman of the VFW Easter Egg Hunt for the township children.

Rosemary and John lived with her parents at 46 Oak Street in the Browntown section of Pittston. Around 1958, they had a son they named Frank Chiamento. Six years later, on January 29, 1964, John left home telling Rosemary he was going to visit his brother who lived nearby, then he was going to stop by to visit some insurance customers to collect payments from them and be home by dinnertime. After spending about 30 minutes with his brother James discussing, among other things, bowling, he left to make his other visits. When he didn't return home for dinner, Rosemary called James who alerted the police. John's empty car was found early the next morning down a steep embankment across the Susquehanna River along the bank near the Harding power plant. There was no trace of John. In fact, there were no footprints or any other markings around the car, indicating that John was not in the car when it rolled down the embankment.

In the days following his disappearance, his brother James, brother-in-law Michael Mecadon, and several other family members and friends launched a massive search for him, but couldn't turn up a single clue. The search continued for several weeks. Rosemary offered a cash reward for any information about his disappearance.

Six weeks after he disappeared, on March 15, his body was located in the river behind a drive-in restaurant on River Street in Plains Township, several miles from where his car had been found. Rosemary's father Frank was called upon to make a positive identification of the body. Although his suit jacket, coat and the zipper-cloth envelope that he kept his insurance receipts in were never found, the authorities declared there was no evidence of foul play, since he still had his wallet in his back pocket and $33 cash in a side pocket. He was just 34 years old.

To read more about this tragic incident, click here.

At the time of John's death, Rosemary was pregnant with their next child. John was buried in Saint Rocco's Cemetery. A short time later, Rosemary gave birth to a daughter and named her Johnna Chiamento. Rosemary was appointed to replace John as Pittston Township auditor.

At some point, Rosemary remarried, to John Edwin Radtke, who she divorced in Virginia in 1998. She then married for a third time, to Sam Mendola. Sam was born in Pittston on November 26, 1931, the son of Charles and Thelma Mendola. He served three years in the Marine Corps and one year in Korea. He worked for M&G Convoy in Newark, New Jersey before retiring in 1994. They were still married and living in Pittston when Sam died at the age of 87 on May 3, 2019.

____________________ PASSINGS ____________________

Francesco "Frank" Trobacco, born in Serracapriola, Italy in 1859, died at home (219 Parsonage, where his son John and his wife Mary lived) on March 14, 1934, age 74. Cause of death was "bronchial pneumonia." His death certificate lists his occupation as "Gentleman." He was buried at Denison Cemetery in Forty Fort. The funeral, like nearly all of the marriages and funerals for the Ambrose, Trobacco, Bruno, and DeMartino families, was held at Our Lady Of Mount Carmel Roman Catholic Church in Pittston.

Concetta continued living at the family home at 219 Parsonage Street. On November 27, 1951, her family gathered there to celebrate her 83rd birthday. Although she was suffering from Pulmonary Edema (a condition caused by excess fluid in the lungs), Myocarditis (inflammation of the heart muscle) and Chronic Arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), she remained socially active until she became too ill and was taken to the home of her youngest daughter, Elvira "Vera" Trobacco Occhiato, at 198 East Railroad Street. She died there on August 21, 1952 at the age of 84. The funeral was held at Our Lady Of Mount Carmel church and she was buried with Frank at Denison Cemetery.


Click here for a map showing the locations of the towns mentioned in the Trobacco section.


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