Celebrating the life of Joseph S. Gallo
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Joe was born in Worcester, MA on August 24, 1930 the fifth of seven children to Mary (Butera) and Joseph Gallo. Joe was twelve years old when his mother and father separated. Mary moved their seven children to Providence, eventually resettling on Federal Hill. Lean times taught Joe what it meant to be hungry. Raised with a tremendous work ethic, he knew the way out of poverty was thru hard work and education. Working multiple day and night jobs which included those at Scialo’s Bakery, Hall’s Drug Store, and Providence Picture Frame, he was able to finish high school, help the family financially, and cover tuition for Bryant College from which he earned a degree in accounting. Armed with a college degree, he entered the Air Force, quickly became a staff sergeant, and traveled extensively in Europe. Upon discharge, Joe proudly purchased Providence Picture Frame Co from his mentor, Harold Nuttall. Joe nurtured that small shop on the third floor of the Arcade into the commanding 27,000 square foot art and frame center currently located at 27 Dryden Lane. In 2002, Joe and his son began working together until Geoff took the business over in 2010.
Joe never forgot those who mentored him along the way and always tried to pay it forward. He quietly supported the community in ways too numerous to mention. Joe was a Masonic brother belonging to Redwood Lodge and was a life member of the Providence Art Club. Joe was a loyal and generous man, supporter of the arts, an avid fisherman and conservationist. Ever the practical joker, Joe loved to laugh. On more than one occasion, neighbors awakened to find plastic flamingoes mysteriously planted on their front lawns. To have one’s lawn graced with Joe’s flamingoes became a true local badge of honor.
A very special thank you to Armand, Joe’s “brother from another mother.” He made everything fun and created the playground Joe could never access in his youth. Joe and Armand were inseparable. When Alzheimer’s Disease progressed to a phase where he was no longer safe to remain home, Joe moved to The Lighthouse at Lincoln. There, trained holistic dementia specialists created a wonderful new home for him. He loved the people, the activities, the trips and chef’s wonderful farm to table food. We cannot thank them enough. Also, we are so grateful for the compassionate support of Hope Hospice. With their help, Joe was able to return to the East Side home he loved so much. His final few days were made peaceful and comfortable.
At Joe’s request, no services were conducted. In lieu of flowers, donations in Joe’s memory would be gratefully appreciated by The Alzheimer’s Association, RI Chapter, 245 Waterman St, Suite 306, Providence, RI 02906 (401-421-0008), Hope Hospice, 1085 North Main Street, Providence, RI 02904, (401-415-4200) .
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