Late in the morning on Friday, April 24, Pete Anzaldo's candle gently burned out as he passed into the arms of the Lord. Although he could not be surrounded by his family at the time of his passing, his death was peaceful because he knew exactly how much he was loved.
Pete was born “Pietro” in Philadelphia to Esther Guido and John Anzaldo. He would tell stories about how as a boy he would play in the ditches being dug in the city for a new subway. When he was 10 years old, his family left the city behind and moved to Main Street in Mullica Hill, New Jersey where Pete would thrive for the next 85 years. His schoolmates called him “Rainy Day Pete” because he was expected to work on the farm and would only attend class when the weather was bad. Despite not attending school past the sixth grade, Pete was exceptionally clever and one of the most hardworking men people were fortunate enough to meet.
Pete met the love of his life Rose Brigandi, also of Mullica Hill, and after exchanging heartfelt letters and gifts, were married on April 8, 1945. They honeymooned for three days in Niagara Falls. For Pete and Rose, trips east of the Mississippi by car would become an Anzaldo family tradition as each Fall the family would spend two weeks exploring a new part of the America.
For three quarters of a century, Pete & Rose made a life together and raised their family in the same home on South Main Street. They weathered storms big and small, global and personal, and throughout it all they never left each other’s side.
In his later years, Pete loved “hangin' in, not hangin' out,” watching baseball games and old westerns, and scoping out his next good meal. Pete gave himself the moniker “Oldest Man in Mullica Hill” and loved when strangers would call or stop by to ask questions about town. His sweet tooth was notorious, and he always had a cake or cookies waiting on the kitchen table.
He is predeceased by his sister, Josephine, and brothers, Joseph and Phillip.
Pete is survived by his wife of 75 years, Rose. He is also survived by his beloved sister, Rachel Cannavo of Messina, Sicily. He leaves behind three children, David (Francine), Dianne Arena (Richard), and Denise DiGiandomenico (Frank); five grandchildren, Mariah Hale (Hank), David (Leica), Michael Arena (Shannon), Philip Arena (Christy), and Alisha DiGiandomenico; and seven great-grand children, Hannah, Jackson, Nathaniel, Gavin, Rowen, Sophie, and Austin. Pete had many friends who he considered family, most notably Pete and Josie Scaffidi. He also leaves behind many nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Due to the current restrictions on large gatherings, services are private. Later in the year, the family plans to host a memorial service where Pete's life can be celebrated just as he would have wanted -- with ice cream, root beer floats, cake, and donuts.