1929 – 2014

RUMFORD — Alphonse “Al” “Fonso” Joseph Geronda, 84, passed peacefully at home at midnight, Thursday, March 13, with his loving wife and daughter at his bedside.

Al was born in Rumford, on June 8, 1929, the youngest son of eleven children. His parents, Dominic and Mary (Montisano) Gironda, migrated from Calabria, Italy. Al was educated in local schools and graduated from Stephens High School with the “good old Class of 47.” He worked for the Rumford News Company where he met the love of his life, Geraldine (Jerry) Linnell. They were married on Sept. 9, 1950, and were blessed with over 63 years of marriage.

Al worked for the Oxford Paper Company as a millwright for many years. Deciding to change careers, he became a licensed real estate broker and started Geronda Real Estate with his wife, Jerry. Helping young couples purchase their first home gave him great satisfaction. He also sold real estate on Bailey Island, where he had built a home  He and Jerry lived there in retirement, eventually returning to Rumford.

Al loved life, people and celebrating life every day, not just on holidays. Al and Jerry enjoyed traveling throughout the United States and Canada. Having the opportunity to travel to Italy twice with his wife, close relatives and friends made unforgettable memories.

Al had great pride in his home and family and a strong passion for woodworking, gardening and entertaining. “Fonso” was known for his custom built bird houses, feeders and bat houses which he gifted to relatives and special people in his life. He was also known for the doll houses he built for his daughter and granddaughter and the miniature log cabin he built for his grandson. His rose bushes and tomato plants were envied. A people person with a “sparkle in his eyes,” he was most happy when cooking and surrounded by family and friends. Throughout his life he loved his many pets especially his cats, Gatto and Catalina, who gave him great comfort right to the end.

Al is survived by his adoring wife, Jerry; his daughters, Mary Jane Gray, her husband Jeffrey, and Linnell (Jeri Linn) Montisano Geronda; his granddaughter, Christina Alves and her husband, Chrisley; and his grandson, Jeremy Gray and his wife, Allison. “Grandpa Al” cherished the times he spent with his great-grandsons, Kian and Raef Alves. He felt especially blessed when his great-grand-daughter, Verona Gardiner Gray was born six months ago. He is also survived by his youngest sister, Ellen Gironda of East Hartford, Ct.; and many nieces and nephews across the country who dearly loved their “Uncle Al.”

Al was predeceased by his parents; his brothers, Victor, Frank and John; and his sisters, Mary, Rose, Ann, Bettina, Florence and Lorretta (Lottie).

The family would like to extend their sincere appreciation to Androscoggin Home Care & Hospice, especially Patty, Bonnie, Wendy and Gail. Also, the family extends their deepest appreciation to his live-in care giver, Shauna, and caregivers, Wendy, Cathy and Jen, for their loving dedication.

Friends and family are invited to sign the online guest book and share memories with the family at www.meaderandson.com.

Guest Book