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Friday, May 05, 2017

John G. Petti, Jr., 89

John George Petti, Jr. of Westport died May 3 at home just shy of his 90th birthday. Image
John Petti: former Sperry Rand executive. Contributed photo

Born and raised in the Bronx, he was the star quarterback of his high school football team, before joining the Navy and serving as a medic during World War II.

After the war, he returned home to complete his education and attend New York University. At that time, a mutual friend introduced him to Inez, the love of his life. The couple married in 1949 and the romance continued for over 50 years, until her death in 2001.

He was an extremely devoted husband and father whose mission was to care and provide for his family. Born into a family of modest means, he set out to succeed in business and amply accomplished that goal.

Determined and forceful, he joined the Sperry Rand Corp in the 1950s and quickly rose through the ranks. As his career with the corporation advanced, the family moved from the Bronx to Westport, to Milan, Italy, and then to Frankfurt, Germany.

The family spent 12 happy and exciting years overseas before returning to the United States in 1974, once again settling in Westport. John completed his successful business career in 1990 as an executive with MBI Inc.

He is survived by his sister, Marie Clancy of Los Angeles; his two children, Lisa Calvocoressi of New Haven, and John Petti III and his wife Courtney of Fairfield; his dear friend Joy Peshkin of Weston; his former son-in-law, Thomas Calvocoressi of Berlin Conn., and 111 grandchildren, two nieces, and one nephew. In addition to his wife Inez, he was predeceased by his brother, Michael, and sister, Settimia.

The family is deeply indebted to Vee, Rosa, and Norma. The outstanding care they provided enabled John to remain at home during his illness, in accordance with his wishes.

In addition to his work and family, John’s great passion was tennis, a sport he discovered in his 30s. A superior athlete, he quickly mastered the game and became a skilled doubles player. As a child growing up in the Bronx, he did not have the opportunity to play the sport.

To support youth tennis and John’s love of the game, contributions may be made to New York Junior Tennis and Learning that has brought tennis to young people in the city’s five boroughs for the past 45 years, 58-12 Queens Boulevard #1, Woodside, NY 11377.

The family will hold a private service that will include interment at Willowbrook Cemetery, with military honors. To sign John’s online register, visit


Posted 05/05/17 at 10:33 AM  Permalink


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