YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (MyValleyTributes) – Peter “Pete” Frank DiRocco, 85, entered peacefully into the presence of the Lord, Monday, May 16, 2022. 

He was born June 29, 1936, in Youngstown, Ohio, to the late Peter Frank and Rose Marie Zorella DiRocco.

Pete met the love of his life, Carol Buchanan and the two were married June 25, 1960. Their life journey almost ended prematurely when the two separated in the mid 1970s, but in 1976 they experienced an encounter with Jesus Christ that changed everything and brought the two back together again, into a bond that lasted until Pete’s death.   

Pete worked at Schwebel’s Baking Company for 25 years before he and Carol left the area sensing a ministry calling to work with youth. They first served as Resident Counselors at Trinity Bible College in Ellendale, North Dakota, then served in four different Christian group home settings in the years that followed. Many young people were positively impacted by “Papa Pete.”  

Pete was a very loving father who enjoyed family vacations and created fond memories camping and boating at area lakes. He loved his three children, Tammy, Kenny and Lisa and adored his seven grandchildren and six great-grandchildren, who remember him as “Papa” or “Pop.” He was a very loving grandpa who loved activities with the grandkids – especially “popcorn and movie parties.” He will be greatly missed by his family and the countless lives he touched.  

Pete did not leave great financial assets to his children but he left a priceless spiritual heritage of his faith that never wavered after his commitment to Christ in 1976.  

He is survived by his loving wife of nearly 62 years, Carol Louise DiRocco; his three children, Tammy Lynn (David) Reese, Kenneth Frank (Nancy) DiRocco and Lisa Marie Humphreys; his grandchildren and great-grandchildren; his sister, Sandi Davis and numerous nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents, Pete was preceded in death by sisters, Connie Kepics, Josephine Willrich, Clara Ducay, Lee Nigro and Carol Tuchek and brothers, Lou and Sam DiRocco.  

Family will receive friends Monday, May 23 from 9:00 – 10:45 a.m. at the Cunningham-Becker Funeral Home in Poland. A funeral service will follow at 11:00 a.m. with Rev. Duane Bull officiating.

Interment will be at Lake Park Cemetery.

Pete’s family request memorial gifts take the form of contributions to Mid-Michigan Teen Challenge, 818 S. Michigan Avenue, Saginaw, MI 48602.

To send flowers to Peter’s family, please visit our floral store.

A television tribute will air Thursday, May 19 at the following approximate times: 6:43 a.m. on WYTV, 9:32 a.m. on WKBN, 10:58 a.m. on FOX and 8:12 p.m. on MyYTV.