Phillip Pagnotta died peacefully on July 20, 2019. Born Filippo Pagnotto on December 17, 1921 he was the eldest son of the late Rocco and Sylvia (Occhipinti) Pagnotto.
Phil grew up in the Car Barn area of Leominster and was a lifelong parishioner of St. Anthony of Padua Church, Fitchburg. A natural athlete, he lettered in football, basketball, and baseball for Leominster High School. The Fitchburg Sentinel described him as “a triple threat” and “a power all season on the Broderick eleven”. Instead of playing semi-pro football, Phil chose to serve his country and his family. As a Torpedoman Second Class, he served in the U.S. Navy during World War II.
After discharge, Phil worked at Great American Chemical Company & retired from Modern Tool & Die. He continued to work at ADESA Boston until his “second” retirement at age 91.
Phil was fortunate to have “love at first sight” when he met Bettina “Betty” Viggiano. They were married for over 65 years until her death in 2012. Together they raised 5 wonderful sons, traveled the United States, and enjoyed family life.
Phil’s athleticism continued throughout his life. He enjoyed candlepin bowling with the Graniteers and the Putnam Street Retired Men’s Monday & Thursday leagues. A lover of the game of golf, his achievements include a hole in one and shooting under his age at Blackstone National Golf Club.
Phil is survived by his sons and daughters-in-law, Deacon Phillip Jr. and Nancy, Lake Forest, IL, Thomas and Claire, Hooksett, NH, David and Ginny, Long Beach, CA, James and Maria, Winter Springs, FL, and John and Joanne, Fitchburg, MA. He is also survived by his sister Victoria Mandarano, Gardner, MA, 12 grandchildren, 10 great-grandchildren, and many nephews & nieces.
In addition to his wife Betty, Phil is predeceased by his siblings Emanuel “Pag” Pagnotto & Agnes Clear, and grandson William Baxter.
The Pagnotta Family would like to extend thanks to those who helped make Phil’s last few years enjoyable including his bowling leagues, Tuesday Morning Breakfast Club, the Fitchburg Senior Center, and the numerous care givers. The family is also eternally grateful to every person at River Terrace Rehabilitation & Healthcare Center for the love, care, and quality of life given to Phil.