Robert E. Scarcelli

d. 2 June 2019
Robert Scarcelli
Deceased
June 2, 2019
Married
Joanne Fiery
Robert Scarcelli
Deceased
June 2, 2019
Married
Joanne Fiery
     Robert E. Scarcelli married Joanne Fiery on 13 August 1960 at Fairview, Maryland. He died on 2 June 2019; Robert E. Scarcelli, 81, of Greencastle, PA, and formerly of Allegany County, MD, educator, died peacefully on June 2, 2019, at Brookdale Senior Living in Hag-erstown while also under the care of Washington County Hospice.
Born November 19, 1937 in Eckhart Mines (near Frostburg), he was the youngest of the three sons of Frank and Kathleen Johnson Scarcelli.
After his 1955 graduation from Beall High School, he proudly served his three year enlistment in the U.S. Navy with most of that time aboard the USS Salem, the flagship of the Sixth Fleet based in the Mediterranean with the Admiral onboard. It is interesting to note that all three brothers “arranged” to serve on the Salem as they found slots available. They deliberately slipped through the cracks despite the rule following the deaths of the Sullivan Brothers in 1942. Bob was a yeoman in the Captain’s Office, Francis was an electrician, and James was a storekeeper. This made their parents anxious; but they enjoyed being there even though they didn’t see much of each other during their duties.
Following discharge at the same time, he and Francis both earned their BA degrees in Education at Frostburg State Teachers’ College, beginning in January of 1959 and finishing in 1963. They took all of their courses but one together. By the end of that first semester, Bob had met former 1955 Hagerstown High grad, Joanne Fiery, who was to graduate from FSTC in 1959. She taught one year at Oxen Hill Elementary School in Prince George’s County. They married on August 13, 1960 at Mt. Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church in Fairview, MD. That strong, loving, equal partnership remained for 58 years. After their wedding, Joanne found a position teaching fourth grade at Penn Avenue School in Cumberland for nine years.
Bob did his student teaching, three years as a teacher of Problems of Democracy and US History, becoming vice principal, and 16 years as principal at Fort Hill High in South Cumberland, then the largest school in Allegany County at the youngest age of 32. He enjoyed the many extracurricular activities which involved many extra hours. The famous Turkey Day football rivalries with Allegany drew huge crowds across the entire city.
He was the first to come and the last to leave every day at school, and in the evenings as well. He never complained about his duties or “took a day off.” He believed in the goodness of people; and he tried to remember that “all parents send us the best kids they have, and it is our duty to improve them.” The family home was close to and within the school grounds. The phone number was in the book, and there was no answering machine. He did not hide in his office; and was always out and about during the entire day.
He completed his Master’s degree in Educational Administration in 1966 from Frostburg in evenings and in the summer. He seemed to thrive with added responsibility. It seemed that he and that Blue Collar community embraced each other. He was blessed with very supportive parents and a hard-working staff. When he became Director of Personnel, which later was combined as an Assistant to the Superintendent, he was very proud of sometimes having to ferret out some below-par employees and replacing them with the best individuals he could find despite pressure from relatives and friends.
He did not fear anyone. When he was able to retire at age 56, he chose to do so because he did not want to become a blocker; and that change was good for everyone. He also saved the Board of Ed lots of money for techs because he was very handy, and always could fix almost any machine. He even knew how to use a sewing machine, and could even let out the waists of his own pants.
For Bob, being retired almost became another full time job. He loved to fix things. A repair man was never called. Joanne used to joke that she was the only thing he couldn’t fix. He also used to joke that if there wasn’t a Lowe’s in Heaven, he wasn’t going. He almost single-handedly built the carport behind the Michigan Avenue home that still looks fine. He even convinced Skip Squires to sell him a gas/air conditioning system so he could install it himself. When he was finished, an inspector from Columbia Gas from Ohio had to inspect it. After seeing it, he said it was the best job he had seen anyone do.
He took great pride in his perfectly mowed yard and garden; and Jackson and Perkins roses were his specialty. They were perfection. His flower bed on the Massachusetts Avenue side was always changing. They yard had lovely flowering trees like mimosas, dogwoods, pears, and a lovely corner Magnolia tree.
During all 36 years at their home, there was always a pet terrier. Fuzzy was a wirehair, Pepsi and Vickie (later Miss Vickie) were Lakelands. He and Joanne and Mike adored them.
Both Bob and Joanne got the “Travel Bug” which took them on three driving USA trips from coast to coast at 10 year intervals; a European trip for their 25th anniversary; a trip to Tuscany; a cruise to Alaska; a trip to the British Isles; and his retirement trip to Athens, Greece, with a Mediterranean cruise, highlighted by seeing the Sphinx and the Pyramids, and riding on camels.
Fifteen of those retirement years moved them to Country Lakes, a retirement community near Little River and North Myrtle Beach, where they basked in the lovely weather year-round with their own home on a lovely little lake, and another yard for Bob.
This exceptional man is survived by his wife, Joanne; brothers, James, Cottageville, SC, Francis, Eckhart Mines; daughter, Janet McPhillips and husband, John, and their three daughters, Becky, Katie and Laura, all of Rockville, MD; cousin, Charlotte Haller Yancey and husband, Monte, Granbury, TX; and several Westernport cousins. He was close with Joanne’s brothers and their families: Ed Fiery and wife, Kathy, and son, Mark Fiery and wife, Holly, son, Landon and daughter, Eden, and daughter, Megan Swank and husband, Bob; Thurman Fiery and Bonnie and their children, Stephanie Barnhart, her daughter, Olivia and partner, Jim Mullins; Brad Fiery and wife, Ashley, and their son, Luke and Brad’s sons, Ethan and Vincent; and Sam Fiery and wife, Judy, and their daughter, Laura Dobbs and husband, Dana.
He was preceded in death by son, Michael (2014); Joanne’s sister, Linda Fiery (2011); and sisters-in-law, April Richardson Scarcelli (1986) and Jean Hammonds Scarcelli (2011).
Bob’s choice was to be cremated with no formal service. His ashes will be buried in Rocky Gap Veteran’s Cemetery.
There will be an informal visitation for those wishing to speak and mingle with Joanne and Francis and his family. Friends, neighbors, former colleagues and students are encouraged to stop by the Scarpelli Funeral Home, P.A., 108 Virginia Ave., Cumberland on Saturday, June 15, 2019, from 1 to 4 p.m.
Any contributions in honor of Bob may be made to the Fort Hill Scholarship Fund, 500 Greenway Ave., Cumberland, MD 21502; or Hospice of Washington County or Doey’s House (specify which as both use the same address), 747 Northern Ave., Hagerstown, MD 21742.
Condolences for the family may be left at www.ScarpelliFH.com.