Felix M. Battista, 92, of Westfield, NJ, passed away on December 11, 2020 in Summit, New Jersey after a short illness.
Felix “Phil” M. Battista was born in Leominster, Mass. to Matteo and Teresa (Piemontese) Battista on June 17, 1928. He moved to Quincy, MA in 1931 and always spoke fondly of his childhood and family life. He graduated from Quincy High School in 1946. That same year he enlisted in the Army at Fort Banks, Mass and went on to the Special Troops Sixth United States Army Group, 441st AGF Band, Presidio of San Francisco, CA as a trumpet player. He married Joan (Grau) Battista on February 11, 1957.
After his military service, Phil attended Bentley University and received a degree from the School of Accounting & Financing in 1950. He would later continue his education while pursuing a career and receive two more degrees, a Master Degree from Fordham University (1981) and a J.D. from Tuoro School of Law (1986). After passing the New Jersey State Bar Exam, Phil spent the rest of his career as a Tax Attorney working in prominent roles at Bristol-Myers Squibb, Roberts Pharmaceuticals, and Terumo Medical Corporation, from which he retired in 2009 at the age of 80.
Phil was known to his family, friends, and coworkers as a hard working, kind, and generous man. He devoted his life to his family, especially his three grandchildren who affectionately called him “Pops.” Pops was a constant supportive presence, never missing a game, recital, or school event.
Phil is preceded in death by his brothers Luigi A. Battista, M. Joseph Battista and Vildo J. Battista.
In addition to his wife, Phil is survived by his daughter Felicia Minarchi and her husband Chris of Whiting; grandchildren Matthew Rifino and his wife Melissa of Long Valley, Jana Berthel and her husband Peter of Basking Ridge, and Giancarlo Rifino and his wife Nicole of Stirling; great-grandchildren Belle, Jameson, Jones, Ellis, and Genevieve. He is also survived by his sister, Carmela Lourie and her husband Bud of South Hampton; and many nieces and nephews.
A private viewing will be held at Sheenan’s Funeral Home, Dunellen, NJ on December 18, 2020, followed by interment at the Brigadier General William C. Doyle Memorial Cemetery in Wrightstown, NJ.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to The American Legion Charities Legacy Scholarship Fund through the American Legion website or by sending them to The American Legion, Donation Processing, PO Box 361626, Indianapolis, IN 46236-1626.
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