James “Ziggy” Zegarelli, 74, passed away peacefully at his home, with his loving family by his side on Monday, March 1, 2021.
Jimmy was born in Utica, August 22, 1946, the second oldest of four sons, of Michael J. and Genevieve (Ransom) Zegarelli. He was educated in local schools and a 1965 graduate of Utica Free Academy.
He attended the Syracuse Barber and Beauty School, where he trained to be a Licensed Barber. He was drafted in the US Army in April 1968. Jimmy served as an MP in Vietnam. He was very proud of his service and always spoke of it with his family, friends and customers. On leave from the service, on November 16, 1968, he was joined in marriage to his sweetheart, Donna Marie Alam.
Donna Marie and Jimmy shared the blessing of their two children and had many happy times together. Always ready to throw a party, the couple shared their home and swimming pool with their many friends. Many great parties were held in their backyard! Both were excellent dancers and you could always count them to gather a crowd to watch them “Jitterbug”.
Although they separated, after twenty five years, they always maintained a loving respect for one another and remained good friends until Donna’s passing on December 22, 2020.
In 1971, Jimmy opened Ziggy’s Place, in the North Utica Shopping Center. He was always referred to as “Ziggy the Barber”, and operated one of the busiest barber shops in the area. If you were from the Utica area, chances are Ziggy cut your hair! When you went to Ziggy’s to get a haircut, you could always count on two things, a quality haircut and a lot of laughs from the “cast of barbers”.
He later joined with his brothers, Frank and Pat, and they operated Zegarelli Haircutters, on Mohawk St. . Jimmy, also along with brother, Mike and sister-in-law, Barbara, operated Ziggy’s Northside Restaurant and Bar, for several years.
Jimmy enjoyed spending time with family and friends, especially his grandchildren, who will deeply miss their Papa. One of his greatest prides in life was being a Papa. He was an avid fisherman and golfer, and loved nothing more than playing a round of Golf at the Eagles, where he was a longtime member, and enjoyed time spent with his many friends.
He is survived by his son, James Zegarelli Jr. and his fiancée, Katrina Jones; his daughter and son-in-law, Ginamarie and Patrick Corridori; grandchildren, Juilianna Zegarelli, Thomas Zegarelli, Patrick Corridori, and Gino Corridori; two brothers and sisters-in-law, Michael and Barbara Zegarelli, Frank “”Ziggy” Zegarelli, and Charlene Zegarelli; and also many nieces, nephews, cousins, and special friends, especially, Mike Schavone and Ro Ferguson, and friends from the Eagles Club, too numerous to mention. He was predeceased by his brother, Patrick “Ziggy” Zegarelli; his nephew, Michael J. Zegarelli III; his niece, Maria (Zegarelli) Rolchigo; and his father-in-law and mother-in-law, Thomas and Helen Alam.
Relatives and friends are invited to his Mass of Christian Burial with Military Honors on Saturday at 11 a.m. at St. Mary of Mt. Carmel/Blessed Sacrament Parish. Visitation will be on Friday from 5 to 7 p.m., at the Matt Funeral Home, 700 Rutger St., corner of Mohawk St., Utica. We are operating at limited capacity at the funeral home and church. Facemasks covering the nose and mouth, social distancing, and Covid tracing will be required. During these trying times a message of sympathy on our website is always a great comfort to the family.
The family would like to thank the amazing staff at Hospice and Palliative Care, especially nurses, Paula, Matt, Jan, and Bev, for their loving care and compassion.
In memory of James “Ziggy” Zegarelli, please consider Central NY Veterans Outreach Program, ucdevelopment.org or Hospice and Palliative Care Inc, hospicecareinc.org.
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