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In Memory

Phil Rotolo - Class of 1967





Philip A. Rotolo, age 63, of Toms River, NJ passed away Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012 at Community Medical Center Van Dyke Hospice. Born in Passaic, Philip lived in Paramus, before moving to Toms River 30 years ago.
Philip was a special education teacher for the Freehold Board of Education for 15 years, until his recent retirement. He is a parishioner of St. Luke Roman Catholic Church, Toms River, NJ. 
Philip is preceded in death by his father, Anthony Rotolo; sisters-in-law, Rowena and Catherine Rotolo. He is survived by his wife of 42 years, Nancy Rotolo; his mother, Concetta Rotolo; his son, Thomas Rotolo; his daughter, Jan Rotolo and her fiancé, Lloyd Sloan; three brothers, Sal (Class of '62), Michael and Donald Rotolo and his wife Maria; three grandchildren, Trent Roma, Makayla Roma and Mason Sloan; several nieces, nephews and cousins.


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11/24/12 04:40 PM #1    

Kenny "Tash" Tashian (1964)



Posted in behalf of Betty Dziob - Class of 1967


Many of you probably don't know this story about Phil. He and I went to Midland School and were in the same first grade class.  There was a little boy in our class who was mentally handicapped.  Our teacher assigned Phil to look after him for the entire school year. He was incredible with this little kid.  He took this responsibility very seriously--he was kind and patient and so capable.  I think maybe the teacher saw something in Phil that led her to choose him to take on this important task.  I'll never forget Phil for that. Once in awhile, over the years, I've thought about Phil, just a little first grader himself, and what he did for that little boy.

When I think of this story about him, what he did stands out as something we can all strive to emulate.  My thoughts to his family.
Betty Dziob Griesbach

11/24/12 04:43 PM #2    

Kenny "Tash" Tashian (1964)



Posted in behalf Pat Flanagan - Class of 1967


Mike such beautiful words to describe Phil.  A dear friend of mine once told me "never let the past escape from your memories".  Our class of '67' was special as was Phil. Phil will be missed by many and my prayers are with Nancy and her family.  At this time of year we give thanks for blessings we have and my memories of PHS Class of '67' will always be a blessing.  God Bless you and our high school family.
Pat Flanagan McManus

11/24/12 04:48 PM #3    

Kenny "Tash" Tashian (1964)



Posted in behalf of Mike Danylchuck - Class of 1967



I will always remember Phil as a super nice guy with a big smile and a gentile manner.  Although I only saw Phil after high school at the reunions he was a great teammate and good friend.  I have thought of him often.

I met Phil for the first time in the fall of '63 when I ran into him while playing safety for Eastbrook on the Paramus High Football field during the first Eastbrook/Westbrook football game.  Or should I say he ran into me.  I didn't know Phil at the time but I remember preparing for the game and being told that the Westbrook offensive line averaged 205lbs while our Eastbrook line averaged 180lbs.  Also mentioned was their unstoppable 250lb fullback, Phil Rotolo. 
Little did I know that once that huge line openned up a hole, that 250lb fullback and I were going to be running into each other for most of the time Westbrook had the ball.  After he broke through the line, it was my job as the safety to stop that freight train while giving up more than 100lbs.  I was never the same.  How could I ever forget him.  I blame Phil for all my back problems from the first time he ever ran over me and all the headaches, because having learned running into a train was not a good idea, I had to put my helmet on his shins for the rest of the game.  He must have gained at least 100 yards that day. 
I remember getting to know Phil better during high school.  I heard a very impressive story.  Do you remember those black topped heavy tables in science lab?  I don't know if you remember, but they were fastenned to the floor.  I heard that his legs were so strong, he could rip the lab tables from the floor by flexing his calf.  Did you ever see his calves?  Phil was a man among boys in high school and I was so happy to have him on my side when we both played for the High School.  As a teammate I could not have asked to play with a better fullback or teammate.  He picked up many a first down by himself usually carrying 3 or 4 tacklers or moving the whole pile. 
Since I've moved to the west coast I've always missed my high school friends.  But I am sure Phil has made a lasting impression on all those who called him your friend as I did.  I will miss him.  And never forget him.
Michael Danylchuk Class of '67
Co-Captain Paramus Spartans Football  

12/26/12 03:05 PM #4    

Kenny "Tash" Tashian (1964)




Posted in behalf of Evie North - Class of 1967


It is with great sadness that I let you know that Phil Rotolo passed away on November 14th. I spoke with Nancy today, and she said it would be ok to let all of you know. Phil was very dedicated to the Class of 67. He was really looking forward to the reunion and was instrumental in arranging for the music, the caterer, hotels, the Elks Lodge and contacting fellow classmates. Although I didn't have much contact with him over the years, I got to know him very well the past few months as we talked about plans for the reunion. He was so excited about seeing everyone again and was looking to having the postponed event in April.


02/12/13 11:57 AM #5    

Ron Braham (1967)

I had the pleasure of spending senior year as part of a group of guys who included Phil. All the stories of his physical strength were true -  I saw him do some amazing things - but he was also someone of great humor, immediately likeable.

One night, three of us were riding around in his father's green Buick and happened to pass through Ridgewood. As luck would have it, we picked up a tail of a carload of guys looking to expand on the Paramus / Ridgewood "conflict". As we rode down Ridgewood Avenue with them flashing their headlights and shouting at us, Phil suddenly pulled over to the curb and immeditely popped out of the driver's seat before any of us could talk him out of it. Seriously outnumbered, we weren't quite as quick to jump out until we realized Phil was out there BY HIMSELF. As we piled out of the car and started eyeballing the other guys (2 to 1 odds) we suddenly heard laughter and saw Phil shaking hands with two of the other guys. He turned to us and said, "Let's go." and we drove off. To this day, I have no idea what he said, but whatever it was worked.

Phil and Nancy lived about an hour from me in South Jersey and, as the reunion was developing, I looked forweard to seeing them again, having spent part of the 30th reunion with them. I kept putting off calling him, counting on the reunion. I'll never make that mistake again. I didn't know how much I'd miss him until I learned he was gone.

Rest easy, Phil. You're missed by many.

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