BOARDMAN, Ohio (MyValleyTributes) – Joseph Frank Sassone, 82, passed away peacefully early Friday morning, March 4, 2022, surrounded by his closest family at St. Elizabeth Youngstown Hospital, from complications arising from a rare bacterial infection. Despite numerous setbacks during his yearlong battle, he remained positive and an inspiration to those around him.

Joe was born February 7, 1940, in Youngstown, the son of the late Joseph Frank Sassone and Esther Yuschak Sassone and raised from a very early age by his mother and stepfather, Jack Spisak, whom he loved as a father.

He graduated from Chaney High School in 1958, had an undergraduate degree in electronics and was a federally licensed radio and TV operating engineer.

He proudly served in the United States Air Force as a mechanic during the Vietnam War and obtained the rank of sergeant.

He worked as a motor inspector at Republic Steel, as an industrial maintenance electrician at Commercial Shearing and retired after 25 years at Packard Electric, as a maintenance supervisor.

Joe was an avid sportsman and dedicated his life to conservation. He was a member of the Brookfield Tri-District Conservation Club and the Western Reserve Fish and Game Club. He served as an officer and director of the Trumbull County Federation of Sportsmen’s Club, where he organized the 60 Gun Raffle fundraiser, an annual labor of love, which supported the Children’s Education Fund. Mr. Sassone was also an officer of the Ohio Federation of Conservation Clubs. He helped organize grass roots advocacy for sportsmen and women and was instrumental in such efforts as having fishing piers built along the causeway at Pymatuning Lake. Joe was a passionate hunter, fisherman, competitive shooter, gunsmith and reloader. He was an NRA-certified Rifle, Pistol and Home Firearms Instructor, a state-certified Hunter Safety Instructor, a developer of the Ohio Hunter Education “Live Fire” Program and passed on his knowledge to numerous safety and self-defense instructors. As “Shenango Joe,” he was a Cowboy Action Shooter and member of the Shenango River Rats chapter of SASS.

Joe is survived by his wife and high school sweetheart of nearly 60 years, Alice Williams Sassone, whom he married July 6, 1962; his two children, Darlene Sassone of Boardman and Brian Sassone of Campbell, California; his grandchildren, whom he “loved bunches,” Anjalia and Saviana Sassone; his sister, Nancy Koperdak of Las Vegas and a brother, Jack Spisak of Lake Milton.

Joe will be sadly missed by all who knew and loved him.

Family and friends may gather to pay respects from 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. Wednesday, March 9, 2022, at Kinnick Funeral Home, 477 N. Meridian Road, Youngstown, where a funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, Joe’s family suggests contributions be made to the Joe Sassone Memorial Fund, in care of the Brookfield Conservation Club, PO Box 46, Brookfield, OH 44403. Please make check payable to Brookfield Conservation Club and include Joe Sassone Memorial on memo line.

A television tribute will air Monday, March 7 at the following approximate times: 7:10 a.m. on FOX, 12:22 p.m. on WKBN, 5:08 p.m. on MyYTV and 7:27 p.m. on WYTV.