Joseph L. Bonavita, Jr. passed away peacefully at his home on Wednesday, November 28, 2018 surrounded by his loving family. He was born on February 22, 1945 in Kingston, NY to the late Joseph L. and Louise M. Bonavita. He graduated from Kingston High School in 1963 and went on to earn his bachelor’s degree from Siena College in 1967, where he played on their inaugural football team. Upon graduating from Siena, he entered the Naval Officer Candidate School in Newport, RI, and was honorably discharged in 1968. Joe began his career at the NYS Dept. of Health, and then moved to Xerox, where his natural confidence and enthusiasm led him to become an award-winning salesman. This ability to connect with others was the hallmark of his long career in the insurance and financial planning industry, where he worked for the Hartford, Travelers Insurance, Connecticut General, before ultimately becoming a Vice President of Financial Planning at Fleet Bank, until opening his own firm, JLB Advisors Inc. In 2013 he also helped open The School of Rock in Latham where he served as CEO. Joe’s generous spirit and commitment to the community was demonstrated by his involvement in several non-profits, including serving as a Board Member for the Albany Medical Center and the Center for the Disabled, as well as a long-standing-member and former President of the Father’s Association at the Albany Academy for Boys. Joe was previously a member of the Fort Orange Club, the University Club and Albany Country Club where enjoyed his time on the golf course and where he never met a stranger. Joe had a lifelong passion for learning, and he remained an avid reader and amateur writer for all his years.
Nothing in life was more important to Joe than his family and friends. He is survived by his loving wife of 50 years, Jane Cavanaugh Bonavita, and his dear sons, Joseph III (Meaghan) of New Orleans, LA, and Mark (Jaime) of Guilderland. “Oompah”, as they called him, had six grandchildren whom he adored- Joseph “Bear” IV, Coco & Rose of New Orleans, and Chloe, Hayley & Aidan of Guilderland. He is survived by his sister Karen (Burt) Bodie of Kingston, NY, and his brother Jeff (Dawn) of Yorktown, VA. He also leaves behind his sister in-laws Judy Zuchero, Judi Cavanaugh, and Mary O’Hair, numerous cousins, nieces and nephews as well as many great friends. He was pre-deceased by his brother Peter.
Calling hours will be held on Monday, December 3rd from 4pm until 7pm at New Comer Cremations & Funerals, 343 New Karner Rd., Colonie. The parish family of Christ the King will gather at the funeral home at 4:30 p.m. for a service of prayer and remembrance. All are welcome. A Mass celebrating his life will be held on Tuesday, December 4th at 11am at Christ the King Church, 20 Sumter Ave., Albany, NY 12203.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Joe’s name to The City Mission, 259 S. Pearl St., Albany, NY 12202, or Christ the King Church.
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