John Stoicescu, of Sparta, New Jersey, passed away on Monday November 22, 2021, at Morristown Hospital at 8:54 pm at the age of 81, holding hands with both of his children. John, or as many knew him as “Dinel”, led an interesting life. He was born on August 10, 1940, in Cornu, Romania to Parasceva and Ion Davidescu. He was the youngest of 10 children. When he was 4, his mother passed away, so he was adopted by the oldest sister Maria and her husband Dumitru Stoicescu who was an amazing father to him. He grew up on a farm working the land, tending to the animals as well as working side by side with his dad on construction sites, including the Municipal building in Cimpina, Romania.
He attended the “Institutal de Constructii Civile si Poduri” (Institute of Civil Constructions and Bridges) in Buchurest, Romania graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Civil engineering. While he was at college, he rented a room from a woman named Stella who was a friend of my grandmother (mom’s). On March 9, 1960 (Mucenici) that he came to pick up Stella and my grandmother invited him in to eat. It was at that time that he first set eyes on the love of his life, Gratziela (my mom). She was only 16. They dated until 1965 when they had a civil ceremony on September26 at the courthouse and then married on October 3, 1965, in the church. They lead a beautiful and fulfilling life in Romania bringing into this world his son, Bogdan on Aprill 22, 1966 and daughter, (that’s me) Andreea on December 3, 1968. (Don’t tell anyone my age)
Having 2 young kids, he wanted more for them than what a communist country at that time could offer so they decided to migrate to America. He took his family, speaking very little English, to Traiskirchen, Austria for “camp” before being allowed into America. Their time there was from August 15, 1975-November 27, 1975, landing at Kennedy airport ON Thanksgiving Day. (Ironically, he died 3 days before Thanksgiving)
Even though friends and family were here, he had many different jobs, like being a janitor in Dans Supermarket in Kew Gardens, Queens. After learning more English and having his unbelievable work ethic show, the family moved to Bloomfield, New Jersey and within 2 1/2 years purchased a beautiful 4-bedroom home in West Orange, NJ where my brother and I grew up until the house was sold in 2003.
He worked for many companies as a civil engineer amongst them Pullman Kellog and Ebassco to name a few. He traveled and worked in Ohio, and Tennessee far away from home all to support his family. One thing you could never say about my father was that he was lazy. He didn’t walk anywhere…it was either running or speed walking saying “hide mai repede” (move faster). Towards the end of his civil career, he opened a construction company. The original name was John S Contruction which later became South Mountain Construction company.
He worked like crazy, even on the weekend since he had 2 kids to put through college as well as help support both his and my mom’s family in Romania. After the West Orange house was sold (STILL love that house) they moved to Sparta, New Jersey to be closer to my brother and they had a good life. They traveled, cruised, drove, camped, fished, visited most of Europe and went back to Romania every year until February 2010 when he had a stroke the evening he landed in Romania. He was not medically able to return to the states until later that summer resulting in inferior rehab leaving him with his right arm paralyzed and walking with a cane due to weakness in the right leg. But he still had a good life surrounded by family and friends.
In January 2015, he had 3 strokes in 2 days and his decline started then leading to needing a feeding tube and nursing home placement for the last 6 years. The last 2 weeks of his life were very medically difficult, but he still fought on until God decided to call him home and he got tired of fighting.
He leaves behind the love of his life, heartbroken wife of 56 years, Gratziela Stoicescu. He will be missed by his loving son Bogdan, daughter–in-law Lavinia, granddaughters Nicole and Emma and grandson Lucas. His grandchildren meant everything to him. This distraught daddy’s girl, Andreea and Scott Gerwin will miss him tremenditiously. There is niece Laura Bufaino and her family, her sister Loredana in Germany, his cousin Marilena Albulescu with her 2 children Henry and wife Despina and Petrina and husband David who have blessed us with so much love and support. Both have children that we are also blessed to have in our lives. Nephew Nicolae Stanescu and wife Nela with their family are by our side as well as multiple nieces and nephews in Romania. Dad was the last of the siblings to die.
If you ask anyone that knew my dad, they will probably say he was the kindest, most giving, selfless, helpful and honest man they met. He always put his family and friends before himself. He helped whoever he could in any way possible. Somebody needed a place to stay, a job, a ride somewhere…he was there. If someone was moving or needed work done on the house, he was there. NEVER wanting or expecting anything in return. He gave more to others than he should have but that was him. Honest to the penny, always welcoming and loving to anyone he met.
He loved to make homemade wine and was well known for his “pastrama”. He made sure my brother and I were not left with any student loans and that there was always food on the table, clothes on our backs and a roof over our heads…even if HE had to get on the roof and fix it himself. He loved dancing with my mom in the kitchen and teaching me and my niece Nicole how to waltz on his feet.
Funeral arrangements are as follows: Monday November 29, 2021
The Life-Giving Fountain Romanian Orthodox Church
132 Califon Road
Long Valley, NJ 07853
Viewing starts at 10:00am
Religious Service starts at 11:00am
Burial to follow at Pleasant Grove Cemetery (right behind church) ending with food served in the church social hall. Please RSVP if coming for food planning.