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In Loving Memory of Frank P. Donroe, A Dedicated Navy Veteran, Passionate Angler, and Old School Foodie.
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Frank P. Donroe, a cherished father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, uncle, and friend, who peacefully left this world on December 30, 2023, at the age of 85, leaving behind a legacy of service, love, and a profound appreciation for life's simple joys. His life was marked by a deep commitment to service, an obsessive passion for fishing, and a passion for creating culinary delights that brought joy to those around him.
Born on May 10, 1938, Frank served his country as a proud member of the United States Navy. His dedication and sacrifice during his military career became a foundation for a life well-lived.
Following his honorable discharge, Frank found solace and pleasure in two of his greatest loves—fishing and cooking. An avid angler, he spent countless hours by the water, casting lines, and sharing fishing tales with family and friends. His eyes would light up as he recounted the thrill of the catch and the peacefulness of being surrounded by nature.
In the kitchen, Frank was a maestro, transforming simple ingredients into culinary masterpieces that delighted the taste buds of those lucky enough to savor his creations. His kitchen was not just a place for meals; it was a space where love and warmth were served generously. Alongside his wife, Judith, he owned and operated several successful restaurants in Clinton and Madison, Connecticut, including The Mad Italian, and a bagel factory/bakery in Brevard County, Florida, at both of which they delighted patrons with their culinary creativity. When he wasn’t cooking, he was eating (like a teenage boy!). Beyond his culinary skills, Frank was known for his appreciation of good food and his endless appetite. He loved to savor the flavors of well-prepared meals and took great pleasure in exploring various cuisines.
Frank's impact extended beyond his military service and passion for fishing and food. He was known for his warmth, kindness, and unwavering support for those he cared about. His wisdom, coupled with a gentle spirit, created a welcoming presence that will be sorely missed by all who had the privilege of knowing him.
He is survived by a daughter, Larissa Jean Owens of Orlando, FL; 3 grandchildren: Adreana Smith (Buddy), Nicolas Owens (Megan) & Elijah Owens; 1 great-grandchild, Claire Whitlock; a sister, Teresa Goss; a sister-in-law, Dolores (Ronald) Colombo; and many nieces and nephews.
He was predeceased by two sons, Walter Andrew Donroe & Michael Joseph Donroe; his wife Judith Donroe; his long-term partner Judith Kreuter; and two sisters Louise Gargamelli & Margaret “Peg” Arrato.
Family and friends are invited to pay their respects at a viewing scheduled for Friday, January 5, 2023, from 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM at Celentano Funeral Home, 424 Elm St., New Haven. Funeral Services will be held Saturday, January 6, 2023, at 10:00 at Church of the Good Shepherd, 680 Racebrook Rd., Orange. Frank will be interned at Evergreen Cemetery. A reception will be held back Church of the Good Shepherd following internment. This will be a time to reflect on the richness of Frank's life, to share stories that capture his essence, and to find comfort in the embrace of loved ones.
In lieu of flowers, and to honor Frank’s memory and continue his legacy of generosity and kindness the family suggests donations be made to either: Project Heal: Service Dogs for Veterans (https://www.ecad1.org/index.php/programs-services/project-heal), 860-489-6550 or Candlewood Fishing Camp (https://candlewoodfishingcamp.org/donate/), 203-570-7952 to sponsor a camper for fishing camp.
Frank's memory will forever live on in the hearts of those who knew him. May he rest in eternal peace, surrounded by the tranquil waters he so loved and the aromas of the delicious meals he created.