Antonio Joseph Paradiso, Jr., 86 of Oroville, Washington, died peacefully in his sleep in the early hours of February 14, 2022. Antonio was affectionately known by family and friends as Junior, Tony, Dad or Papa T. Tony was born on March 18, 1935 at home in Angola, New York. He was the son of the late Antonio J. and Agnes Paradiso. Tony was the sixth of 10 children and was the last child born at home. He was formally married to the late Minnie Murray.
Tony grew up in a small rural farming community in Erie County, New York where he remained the majority of his life. Tony’s childhood was centered on family, faith, work and authentic Italian foods.
Tony had a strong work ethic from an early age. He never shrugged away from hard labor. He worked on farms as a young teen and shared stories about growing up during the depression and the many things he learned about life. One of his employers – Mr. Pero instilled knowledge about farming and commitment. Mr. Pero would pick Tony up and bring him home from work and provide meals for him. Tony would work for Mr. Pero at the bowling alley sticking pins. At home he would help elderly neighbors with household chores. As a young man, Tony could be found painting houses, working at vegetable packing sheds or at the meat packing plant as a dropper.
He spent his free time in the woods, trapping or hunting or by the local creeks fishing with his brothers and friends. Tony was known in his teens as a local heart throb – there were a lot of girls waiting for a “skate” with Tony, who was quite a dancer on roller skates. In the late 1950s he met his future bride at the Irving Diner and married the love of his life – a fiery redhead named Minnie.
After they wed, the couple moved to Florida for several years, where their daughter Lacretia “Crisha” was born. Tony worked in Florida as a seasonal farmworker picking fruit or working in the packing sheds before the family moved back to Angola, New York. In 1963, Tony began work for South Buffalo Railway where he worked as a track man for 32 years until his retirement in 1995.
He was a native Western New Yorker, originally from Angola, New York, who moved to Oroville, Washington in the summer of 2001 to be closer to his daughter and family.
Tony was a happy go lucky man with a smile that is his legacy. His loves – his family and friends. If you met Tony, you were a friend – he never really knew a stranger. He loved to fish and tell you stories about fish and spent many days and evenings on the front porch or across the street with Ed and his family, fishing, visiting or playing music. Molson held a special place to Tony, it reminded him of his home in New York. Tony loved to spend time gambling at the casino or entertaining family or friend by making some of his authentic Italian foods like burdocks, or spaghetti, working in the yard or playing us all some of his original songs and some standards he learned from his father on his accordion or the piano. He loved to dance and share a glass of wine on Taber’s deck with his very special lady friend Carolyn.
Tony is survived by his loving daughter, Lacretia “Crisha” and her husband Clay Warnstaff; grandchildren, Brandye (Luca) Diehl and Chase (Megan) Warnstaff and his ultimate pride and joy – his three great grandchildren, Waylon and Claire Diehl and Olive Jo Warnstaff. He was brother of Grace (late Don) Romans, Daniel (late Sandra) Paradiso, Ann (Carl) Bach, Ernest (Betsy) Paradiso and Raymond Paradiso; sister-in-law, Evelyn Paradiso; brother-in-law, Ray (Gale) Murray and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his brothers, Frank (Lorraine), Pasquale, John and his sister, Regina (Tony) Pericak.
A funeral service will be held Saturday March 5th, 2022 at 9 a.m. at the Bergh Chapel in Oroville with Father Luta officiating. Interment to follow at the Molson Cemetery.
Bergh Funeral Service & Crematory is in care of arrangements.