Albert “Al” J. Casatelli, 76, passed away peacefully at the Hickory House of the Sitrin Health Care Center, with loving family by his side, on Wednesday, November 4, 2020.
Albert was born in Utica, on February 23, 1944, a son of the late Peter and Nancy (Greco) Casatelli. He was educated in local schools and a graduate of T.R. Proctor High School. He later attended Syracuse University, majoring in studio art and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts and Education. On June 22, 1968, Albert was joined in marriage to the former Vincenza (Vinnie) Salerno. Albert and Vincenza have enjoyed a loving and devoted marriage of over fifty-two years as best friends. They loved to travel together, hunt for ‘antiques’, share meals with their cherished friends and spend time with their kids and grandchildren, who were their greatest accomplishment of their marriage.
For over 33 years, Albert was the middle and high school art teacher at Poland Central School, where he was known by his students as “Mr. Cas”. Albert loved teaching art and many of his students, regardless of their artistic abilities, found all the comforts of a second home in his classroom. Al continued his passion for teaching after retirement, and taught night classes at HCCC, at the Utica Sr. Parkway Rec Center Program and MVLIR.
Al found great joy in the many, many years spent painting and sketching with his “art group.” Al supported the local artist community and exhibited his own work at the Kirkland Art Center, local colleges and the Utica Public Library. He won the people’s choice award at Munson Williams annual sidewalk show and his paintings and sculptures have been bought and sold in shops and galleries in many parts of the US and England.
In addition to his passion for art, Albert was an avid horseman, who always loved riding his paint horse, "Scribbles". He was a die-hard SU Basketball fan, enjoyed traveling and fishing at the family camps at Oneida Lake, was a longtime member of the Kuyahoora Rotary Club, and a daily fixture at Jerry Dischavio’s Antique shop, on Oneida Square, where he has been very sadly missed.
Al is survived by his beloved wife, Vincenza; his daughter, Jolene Casatelli and Daniel Ficano, of New Hartford; son and-daughter-in-law, Peter and Elizabeth Casatelli, of Deansboro; his 5 grandchildren, all of whom he loved dearly and considered his most ‘cherished of life’s gifts’, Gabrialla Ficano, Matthew Ficano, Julia Ficano, and Daniel Casatelli and Abbey Casatelli; his sister and brother-in-law, Nancy Anne and Ronald Daubert; Aunt Rose Gamello; and also many nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
His Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Monday at 11 a.m., at Our Lady of the Rosary Church, with his cousin, Father Joseph Salerno, as Celebrant. Interment will be in Calvary Cemetery. We ask that you come a little earlier, as registering for tracing, masks covering nose and mouth, and social distancing will be implemented by the church staff.
In lieu of flowers please consider a donation in Albert’s name to the Alzheimer’s Association, Central New York Chapter at alz.org/centralnewyork
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