Derry, N.H. — Francis T. Siragusa passed away peacefully at his home in Derry, New Hampshire on April 4, 2013, where he lived with his wife Gerlanda (Chiacchio), and his son Gerard, his wife Elizabeth and their six children.
Francis, the son of Italian immigrants Peter Siragusa and Maria Fissolo, was born in Boston in 1922 and was the oldest of four children. He was a longtime resident of Brighton, Massachusetts, until he got married and moved to Waltham. In 1929, the beginning of the great depression, Francis began living with his father's twin sister Lina and her husband Fortunato Sordilo, a soloist with the John Phillip Souza Band. This is where his love of music and education was born. He played the trumpet and graduated first in his class from Boston Latin School. Undecided on whether he wanted to become a dentist or a priest, he enrolled at Boston College. As soon as WWII began, he joined the United States Army where he earned the rank of First Lieutenant and Company Commander. He saved the life of a fellow GI by giving him a direct blood transfusion on the operating table due to a lack of available blood supply. After his discharge from the army, he returned to Boston College and earned a degree in Buisness, and graduated first in his class, receiving the Father Fulton Medal of Excellence and became a member of the Cross and Crown Honor Society for academic excellence. He also attended Harvard Buisness School and Tufts University where he studied management and economics.
During Mr. Siragusa's adult life, his love of food led him into the fish business with his father-in-law, Ralph Chiacchio, where they developed the first frozen fish sticks. As an entrepreneur, he owned and operated two successful restaurants, the Villa in Sudbury, Mass., and the Amalfie across from Symphony Hall in Boston, Mass., as well as Duplains Bakery in Dorchester, Mass., and a Macaroon Factory in Waltham, Mass. In later years, he was vice president of marketing for Barnstead Corporation of New Jersey, and president of Siragusa and Associates, a consulting firm. His expertise was in highly specialized scientific equipment used in the production of ultra-pure water and sterilization applications that were installed and utilized in some of the most respected research laboratories in the world, including Harvard, Yale and MIT, as well as major teaching hospitals, and a Space Shuttle Mission. Francis was very proud that he helped design and install his equipment into the laboratories of 8 Nobel Laureates.
Francis was a gentle, kind and honest man who was a loving husband to Gerlanda for 62 years, a kind and caring father to his three children, Christine Starratt, of Lowell, Karen Crupi, of Andover, and Gerard, of Derry. Francis also leaves two sisters, Mary Blackburn and Michelina Tawa both of Brighton, eight grandchildren, two great grandchildren, and his late Anthony Crupi.
ARRANGEMENTS: Services were held on April 8, at his lifelong friend's funeral home, John McNamara, in Brighton and at his childhood church of St. Ignatius at Boston College.