YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (MyValleyTributes) – A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Anthony of Padua Church at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, November 18, 2022, for James Ralph DeCapua, who passed away peacefully at Hospice House surrounded by his family.
Born on September 25, 1930, in Youngstown’s Brier Hill neighborhood, Jim was the eldest son of Angelo and Gladys (Scoville) DeCapua.
Jim attended The Rayen School before joining the United States Air Force.
After returning home during Christmas of 1949, Jim became a neighborhood hero when he rescued a kitten from atop a telephone pole after hearing the cries of a three-year-old boy.
After his discharge from the service, Jim became a structural iron worker for the Hunter Construction Company but he found his true passion when, on January 1, 1952, he joined the Youngstown Fire Department where he served for 31 years, retiring in 1983 earning the rank of Captain.
Jim held many other titles during his long life: former owner of Youngstown Fire and Safety Supply, manager of the Bel-Park Professional Building, real estate agent and owner/operator of Stephen Stables.
In December of 1949, while attending a Christmas party on a blind date, Jim met a young nursing student, Theresa Martinko. The next day they were “going steady” and in May of 1952 they were married. They remained married for 60 years until Theresa’s death in 2012.
Jim maintained an active lifestyle in Florida and Ohio. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus, 4th degree, as well as, an eucharistic minister. He was a man of many talents. He loved listening to jazz music, playing bocce, making stained glass art and being in the sunshine.
Jim leaves to cherish his memory his children, Marie (Nickolas) Ihnat of Twinsburg, Ralph (Marianne) DeCapua of Sarasota, Florida, Gene (Janet) DeCapua and Stephen (Traci) DeCapua of Canfield and son-in-law, James Klukan; grandchildren, Daniel (Leslie) Battisti, Jerry (Katherine) DePizzo, Stephen (Jennifer) DePizzo, Christina (Andrew) Laboy, Laura Nalin, Morgan DeCapua and Grant DeCapua and great-grandchildren, Sophia and Isabella DePizzo and Henry and Audrey Laboy.
The family would also like to extend their heartfelt gratitude and love for the compassion, care and love given to Jim by his devoted caregivers, past and present, Linda Lardin, Merlene Richards, Mandy Price, Kelley Marki, Daniel Miller, Brock Wooten, Taylor Minenok, Taylor Reese, Joey Lambright, Audra Bush, Lauren Pepperney, Toni Francis, Melissa Johnson, MacKenzie Larch, MacKenzie Goodin, Marissa Marzano, Mallory Malmer and Sam Snyder.
Besides his wife Theresa, Jim was preceded in death by five sisters, June Marie and Gladys May DeCapua, Doris Jean Catheline, Joanne Schneider and Janice LaLama; two brothers, Robert LeRoy and Angelo, Jr. DeCapua; a daughter, Jeanette Klukan; an infant son, James, Jr.; a grandson, David Battisti and furry companion, Abbey.
Family and friends will gather from 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 17 in Schiavone Funeral Home.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the St. Vincent DePaul Food Pantry, 317 Via Mount Carmel, Youngstown, OH 44503 or to Hospice House, 5190 Market Street, Youngstown, OH 44512.
A television tribute will air Wednesday, November 16 at the following approximate times: 6:47 a.m. on WYTV, 9:43 a.m. on WKBN, 10:58 a.m. on FOX and 8:12 p.m. on MyYTV.