Joseph Guarnotta, 89, passed peacefully on October 20, 2020 in Watertown, MA.
Joe was predeceased by his beloved wife Doris and sister Eileen. Joe is survived by his five children, Brian Guarnotta, his wife Heather and their two children Silvia and Niccolo of Boston; Christopher Guarnotta of Cali, Colombia; Julie Guarnotta of Sausalito, CA; Meghan Guarnotta of Somerville, MA; and Kevin Guarnotta, his wife Laura and sons Aurelio and Zachariah of Woodstock, NH as well as his dear sister Barbara Slattery.
He was born in Arlington, MA on November 4, 1930. Joe was a member of the Arlington Boys Club and attended Arlington High School, where he excelled in academics and was a star player on their football and basketball teams. He attended UMass Amherst and received a degree in Psychology. He served in the Air Force, during which he traveled extensively and achieved the rank of 1st Lieutenant. He continued on to earn two master's degrees, one in teaching and an MBA. He had a long and successful career as an early computer programmer and worked with the Air Force Computer Acquisition Center and later helped the FBI to develop the national fingerprinting database system. He was an inventor, had a copyright and created Cubik Word Games. Over time, he developed a second career in real estate.
As a young man working in New York City, he crashed a neighbor’s party and was escorted to the door by the hostess, Doris Byrne, a TWA flight attendant from Ireland. After that inauspicious introduction, they married in 1963 and shared a life together for over 50 years. They had a mutual love for travel, family, good food, telling stories, hosting, and bringing people and cultures together. Doris shared with him the beauty of Ireland, family and a love for a good chat. Joe shared with her fried spaghetti, linguini with clams, eggplant parm, and other specialties of his Sicilian heritage, his love of music and a robust sense of humor. They had 5 children and 4 grandchildren.
He read constantly, with a strong preference for murder mysteries and spy novels. He liked collecting and sharing books, driving his car fast and always learning. Up into his final years, he was fascinated with new technology, trying and testing new devices, smart phones, and donning Silicon Valley swag, learning new things and sharing them with his family.
In retirement Joe moved with his wife to Osterville. There he enjoyed sitting and reading on the beach and digging for quahogs. He and Doris had an active life, playing golf with friends and spending winters in Florida and in California. He loved attending his grandchildren’s sports games and birthday parties and was a happy guest at Superbowl parties and other family gatherings. His love for jelly beans and ice cream was a source of family amusement. But what he loved most of all was having friends and especially his large and close knit family around him. That truly brought him the most joy and happiness. We will miss his hugs, his kisses, his passion and his I love yous and his dedication to his family.
There will be an interment and service 10 AM, Saturday October 24 at Wildwood Cemetery, Winchester, MA.
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