Cover photo for Eugene DePaoli's Obituary
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Eugene DePaoli

January 18, 1953 — March 11, 2024

York Haven

Eugene DePaoli

Eugene DePaoli, 71, of York Haven died peacefully Monday, March 11, 2024, with his family by his side at Penn State Health Holy Spirit Medical Center in Camp Hill.

He was a retired computer programmer with the U.S. Department of Defense, where his colleagues knew him as “Gino.”

 Born on Jan. 18, 1953, in Connellsville, Pennsylvania, to the late Anthony and Shirley (Warzinski) DePaoli, Eugene was also preceded in death by his awesome son, Matthew Leon DePaoli, whose September 2021 passing broke Eugene’s heart.

 He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Karen Ann (Powell) DePaoli, and three surviving children: David E. DePaoli of Pensacola, Florida; Lynsay A. DePaoli (Scott) of Tremont; and Tiffany R. DePaoli (Conor) of Hanover, Maryland. Eugene was the proud oldest brother to Rosemary Bohin (William), Antoinette Thalman (August), Joanne Hetherington (Joseph), Anthony DePaoli, Deannie Moss (Chuck), John Silvasy, and Roslyn Lloyd.

 Eugene loved his three grandchildren, Davin and Skyler Keck, and Damian Burkle, as well as his “bonus children,” Thor and Christy Keck, and Geoff and Brandie Morrow (and their daughter, Lillie). He was also a beloved uncle to numerous nephews and nieces.

 In addition to his cherished roles as father, husband, grandfather, brother, uncle, friend and colleague, Eugene enjoyed many hobbies, most of which brought joy to others. That included gardening (and giving plants to family and friends), cooking for everyone (especially chili, spaghetti and meatloaf, though his simple egg-and-cheese sandwiches were equally incredible), and listening to music (mostly Cher, The Eagles, Patsy Cline and, weirdly, foreign pop music).

 He was well respected by his work colleagues, never missed any of his kids’ volleyball, soccer or tennis games/matches or recitals, and was a gifted dog trainer, especially Dobermans. Eugene showed up for his children every day as kids (and still, as adults, he always had a suggestion to offer), and will be dearly missed. Eugene absolutely LOVED his lunches with his family, friends and former colleagues – and he really enjoyed spending one-on-one time with others, usually at diners.

 He also loved providing memorable Christmases for his family, wrapping presents in numerous boxes, hiding special gifts in the Christmas tree, and surprising family members with group gifts. Described brilliantly by “bonus son” Thor as “stoic,” Eugene cleverly mixed fun and spirit with his otherwise reserved personality. But, boy, did he love to laugh, especially with his goofy, hilarious children and grandchildren.

Many might not have known it, but Eugene was also a gifted artist who originally went to college to become an art teacher before he accepted a position with the federal government – and the rest is history. He also learned from his mistakes, as a heart attack in 1999 led him to quit smoking and start walking every day, usually with his beloved Doberman, Brandy, by his side.

 But at the end of the day, family was everything to Eugene, said Karen. He loved not only his immediate family, but his extended relatives and bonus kids as well. “Dadio” was so proud of his four children, Dave, Matt, Lynn and Tiff, and wanted nothing but the best for them.

 To Dave, Eugene showed him the importance of working hard, respecting others and loving with a full heart.

 To Lynn, he taught her the power of a strong work ethic and, of course, how to properly load a dishwasher. He also regularly made her laugh by blurting out “I was watching that!” when she’d try to take the remote control from his hand while he was clearly snoring and not paying any attention to the TV.

 To Tiff, some of her best memories are of the “three amigos” of Eugene, Matt and Tiff together. Silliness would rule the day, and he wonderfully weaved in relevant stories from his childhood. Tiff said he challenged all four of his children and always pushed them toward success in life and career.

And his late son Matt was his most trusted confidant. The dynamic duo shared similarly unique souls, wicked senses of humor, and hearts overflowing with love and patience (sometimes) for their family and friends. Eugene was never the same after Matt died, as every parent wishes to outlive their children, but he cherished until the end the opportunity to relive memories and share stories of his revered son.

In honor of Eugene (and Matt), and in lieu of flowers or donations, strive to live a healthy and fulfilling life, share your talents and skills with others, fight through that notorious stubbornness, and love with all your heart.

A special Celebration of Life for family, friends and colleagues will be held in the near future.

This obituary was lovingly prepared by Geoff Morrow, a lifelong “bonus son” to Eugene and Karen, and goofy, incredibly thoughtful childhood best friend of Matt. The DePaoli family thanks Geoff for beautifully piecing together Dadio’s considerate, loving life into a story shared with others.

 

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