OBITUARY

George Nicholas LaBarbera

December 22, 1953September 3, 2020
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George Nicholas LaBarbera was born on December 22, 1953 in Brooklyn, New York to Nicholas LaBarbera and Lucille (Venuto) LaBarbera, and passed away peacefully on September 3, 2020 in Phoenix, Arizona with his wife of 29 years, Linda (Kaspar) LaBarbera by his side. George grew up on Long Island surrounded by his maternal grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. He attended Polk Street Elementary School and graduated from H. Frank Carey High School in Franklin Square, NY. He majored in Computer Science and minored in Statistics and earned his undergraduate degree from Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY.

George then began a career in Information Technology, working for small and large consulting firms for many years, and was working most recently as a Program Manager for Wells Fargo. George and Linda met while working at Trecom Business Systems, Inc. in NJ, and were married on September 22, 1990. They lived for a while in New Jersey, but longed to relocate to Arizona. The opportunity to do so presented itself in 1997, and they moved to Gilbert, where they lived for 20 years. They then moved to Sedona in 2017.

George is preceded in death by his parents, Nicholas and Lucille LaBarbera; his maternal aunts Ann (Venuto) Ruggiero and Angie (Venuto) Rigattieri, uncle Thomas Rigattieri, and cousin Barbara Ruggiero; his paternal uncle Vincent LaBarbera, and aunt Anna LaBarbera; and his father-in-law, Michael Kaspar. He is survived by his wife, Linda (Kaspar) LaBarbera; his brother Richard LaBarbera, and sister-in-law Deborah (Simpson) LaBarbera; by his mother-in-law Josephine (Bsales) Kaspar; his maternal uncle Charles Ruggiero; brothers-in-law Basil Kaspar, Gregory Kaspar, Michael Kaspar, Christopher Kaspar, David Kirberger, James Laux, and Logan Nicholson; and sisters-in-law Gail (Kaspar) Kirberger, Jane (Kaspar) Laux, Colleen (Kloiber) Kaspar, and Lisa (Mascia) Kaspar.

He is also survived by 16 nieces and nephews and 13 great-nieces and great-nephews whom he dearly loved: Nicole (LaBarbera) and Rob Hulsman, Traci (LaBarbera) and Steven Stromie, and Joseph LaBarbera; Michael Salvatore Kaspar, Carla (Kaspar) and Shayne Musgrave, Eric Kirberger, Lauren (Kirberger) and Drew Gardner, Justin Kirberger, Richard and Heather Laux, JoEllen (Laux) and Ryan Brotman, Travis and Mahshid Laux, Daryl (Laux) and Michael Grassel, Nicole Kaspar, Michael Anthony Kaspar, Francesca Kaspar, and Gavin Kaspar.

There will be a Memorial Service at Mariposa Gardens (Mesa, AZ) on Friday September 25 at 1:00 pm local time. The service will be Livestream-ed for those who cannot attend in person. A link will be posted on George’s Mariposa Gardens obituary site. https://www.facebook.com/MariposaGardensFuneral/

In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in George’s name to Editha House. For more information about this wonderful non-profit, where Linda and George stayed for 10 months during his treatment, please see the website at https://edithahouse.org/ If you choose to mail a check directly, checks should be made out to "Editha House Foundation" and can be mailed to: Editha House 336 E. Willetta St Phoenix, AZ 85004 The family thanks you for your love and support during this difficult time.

Services

25 September

Celebration of Life

1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Mariposa Gardens Memorial Park and Funeral Care

400 South Power Road
Mesa, AZ 85206

25 September

Inurnment

2:00 pm - 2:30 pm

Mariposa Gardens Memorial Park and Funeral Care

400 South Power Road
Mesa, AZ 85206

Memories

George Nicholas LaBarbera

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Anthony Pirozzi Jr

September 21, 2020

My story was too long for the website, I had to put it up in 3 posts, try to scroll down and read from the 3rd post to the 2nd to the last if you can

Anthony Pirozzi Jr

September 21, 2020

3 of 3.....
We were friends like no others for our entire lives. We graduated the same college, with the same degree. We both got entry jobs as programmers, unfortunately as hard as we tried, we couldn’t land jobs at the same place. But that didn’t last long, about 1 year into our careers, we both landed new jobs at the same consultant firm. We commuted together, we were working at different clients, but we would meet for lunch, and meet for drinks after work every day!
Eventually, we found our way to the same client and then to the same projects. We traveled around the county for our client, always taking the same flights and staying at the same hotels. Joined at the hip!
When we were working for AT&T on a very large project, there was a young female programmer working for the company, her name was Linda Kaspar. Linda asked me one day if my friend George was married or dating anyone. I told her that he wasn’t and that I would introduce them. We all went out for dinner one night, and the rest of that story is history!
I miss George, I will always miss him. He was the brother I never had!

Anthony Pirozzi Jr

September 21, 2020

2 of 3
Funny Story, and George would agree, because he was so Cool! One day, right after George got his first car, he got out of class one period before me and decided to go get his car to pick me up when I got out of class. That car was a very large and long Chevy Impala. George wasn’t a great driver, especially with a big car! About 15 minutes into my class, I see George outside the classroom and in a low voice I hear him saying, “Yo, Yo”. He was so Cool! I get up from my seat and go to the door. George tells me his car is stuck and he needs my help. OK, so I don’t go back to class, I tell him let’s go get my car and we will jump start his car. He says to me, no, the car is running it’s just stuck. Now I don’t understand, but I walk with him to the street where we parked off campus. Then I see it, the car is running, it is perpendicular to the cars on either side of the street and wedged between the cars on both sides. Wow, how did that happen? He tells me he was trying to make a 3-point turn to come get me without going around the block! Well after a lot of maneuvers I get car un-stuck and we go to lunch. George was so Cool he didn’t sweat the details! About a month later he sold that big boat and got a teeny tiny Chevy Vega! Big George looked so funny in that small car, but he loved it!
to be continued.....

Anthony Pirozzi Jr

September 21, 2020

1 of 2
George and I met on the first day of 9th grade French Class in 1968 where we sat next to each other. George leans over to me and says “Your wristwatch is Cool”. I later learned that George’s favorite saying was, “Be Cool” and he was Cool! So, I offer to let him try my watch on, which he does, then I get my seat moved for talking in class, George didn’t get in trouble because he was Cool!. When class ended, we both moved on to the rest of our classes. After last period, George was waiting for me outside the school, he comes up to me and like the Cool dude he was, he asks me what time it is. I look at my wrist, no watch, he shows me my watch on his wrist and says it’s 3:00 you should get yourself a watch! Well that was it, we were friends!
For the rest of High School, we were joined at the hip, we hung out in school, we hung out after school and as we got older we hung out at night and on weekends.
When we were in 11th grade we both had a lot of free periods, and we had cars, so we would leave school every day and cruise around, get lunch, and eventually go back to school for last period.
to be continued........

Vinny Ruggiero

September 20, 2020

I have so many fond memories of my cousin George. While we were growing up, our family was super close. I am fortunate to have a great family and the best cousins. George was very special, more like a big brother to me. He was kind, patient and had a heart of gold. He was someone I could confide in and he would always find a way to simplify problems and provide terrific guidance. I looked up to him and now looking back, I realize more than ever that he was a great role model to me. My best memories of George were around the many family gatherings we had when we were young, especially the holidays and summer BBQ's. The 'macaroni and gravy' as we called it was great, as all of my aunts were the best cooks. I remember the family basketball game we had at my house. I would try to guard George but it was impossible as he was so tall! Thanksgiving at Aunt Lucy's was always special. My aunt was very organized and, to this day, I still remember George telling the story about how he got up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom and when he came back, my Aunt Lucy made his bed! He told that story so well, I laugh every time I think about it. In particular, I have so many great memories with George when we had the season tickets to the Ranger games for a couple of years. I would meet George and we would often drive into NYC together. That was really special as it was 1x1 time with George, getting there was half the fun and talking on the way home was unforgettable. Things were very simple in those days and just being together with George and the rest of my family all added up to very special times for all of us. George excelled at life: he was an excellent student, had a successful career, he was a great husband and a super person - George set a high standard for all of us to follow. I miss him very much, but I will always cherish the time we had together. Love Vinny




































Adele Persico

September 20, 2020

Colleen Kaspar

September 18, 2020

I remember George as the most gentle, mellow and giving guy I have ever met. He never got upset about anything. So many times on Holidays with family he would listen for the longest time to the conversation going on and then all of a sudden make a comment that either had you laughing or having a great a-ha moment of understanding!
We will miss your gentle smile and kind heart George. You will forever be in our hearts.

Shirley & Ed Braverman

September 17, 2020

Last summer, Ed and I and another couple, Deb and Randy, headed to Sedona - to bowl a tournament at Cliff Castle. We contacted Linda & George to arrange a dinner out. It was a memorable evening at the restaurant. Laughter, meals that were late to the table, overcooked pizza. Deb and Randy were so impressed with Linda & George that they went through the months of hopes and prayers with us for George. We had planned another trip to Sedona to celebrate his recovery, but at a different restaurant. George always had a knack for making people feel comfortable in his presence. Rest in Peace George❤

Deb Blomfield

September 16, 2020

Dear Linda,

The words “you can’t judge a book by its cover” are so true. I remember meeting George several years before I joined Trecom. We were competitors and I saw a tall almost imposing man. But, he was also quiet and respectful. Later when I joined Trecom, I quickly learned George truly was a kind and gentle giant! He was also a calming soul with the greatest smile and a warm heart.

Then I was lucky enough to get to know you and George personally. From the first Super Bowl party at your home to the fabulous New Years we spent with you in Arizona, you made everything perfect. You were the best host and hostess and always great friends.

Years pass too quickly and the times together became less frequent; but, Tony and I always talk about how great you guys were together and how special you made others feel.

You and George shared a love that very few get to experience. We cannot imagine how hard it is to lose the love of your life and your best friend. We know there are no words to fill the void left by his passing. We only hope you find comfort in knowing how much he was loved by others and how those who knew you both are better for it.

Sending you love, hugs and prayers.

Love Deb and Tony Blomfield

Debra and Ray Karam

September 16, 2020

Dear Linda,
Words cannot express the sorrow Ray and I have been feeling since George's passing. We were so happy to have met you and George when you moved to Arizona. You both opened up your beautiful home to us and made us feel like "instant" family. I have fond memories of watching you and your family making string cheese in your kitchen, and chatting with George about current events and politics. He always made us feel welcome and comfortable in his presence. He was a kind-hearted, gentle man, and I'm sure your loss is immeasurable. Remember, he is still with you, and watching over you from high above. Knowing how much you loved him, the depth of love you had for him (and he for you!) makes our hearts ache for you in this difficult time. We love you and think about you and George every day. And yes... we would have loved to have you as neighbors on the "West Side" so we could have seen you more often :) - Love, Deb and Ray

FROM THE FAMILY
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