Angelo J. Pennacchia, 85, of Springfield, Delaware County, a mechanic and decorated World War II Army veteran, died of renal cell cancer Wednesday, May 18, at home.
Mr. Pennacchia grew up in West Philadelphia and trained as an auto mechanic.
During World War II, he drove tanks and motorcycles in the 773d Tank Destroyer Battalion under Gen. George S. Patton's command in northern France and central Europe. He was wounded during the Battle of the Bulge and was awarded a Purple Heart.
After his discharge, Mr. Pennacchia was a General Motors Corp. auto mechanic before going to work at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard. For 30 years, he was an engineer mechanic for aircraft-carrier catapults. Occasionally he and his team were flown to a ship at sea to make repairs.
After retiring from the Navy Yard in 1986, he worked for Four D Electric, an electrical contractor in Havertown.
He was an expert mechanic who was always eager to help his children, friends, and neighbors. It never took more than a phone call for him to arrive ready to install a set of brakes or change a faulty light fixture, his family said.
An avid sports fan, Mr. Pennacchia was in the stands when the Phillies won the World Series in 1980 and 2008. As an usher and later as a season-ticket holder, he cheered on the Eagles at Franklin Field and Veterans Stadium, and he attended the 2005 Super Bowl in Jacksonville, Fla., with his two sons. He also attended many 76ers and Flyers games.
When their children were growing up, he and his wife, Angelina Tulli Pennacchia, vacationed in Wildwood. Later, they enjoyed summer vacations with their family in Ocean City, N.J.
Mr. Pennacchia is survived by sons Raymond and Angelo; daughters Linda Schramm and Cynthia Blankenship; 10 grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and two sisters. His wife of 55 years died in 2002.
Friends may call from 4 to 7 p.m. Sunday, May 22, and from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. Monday, May 23, at D'Anjolell Memorial Home, 2811 West Chester Pike, Broomall. A Funeral Mass will be said at 10:30 a.m. Monday, May 23, at St. Francis of Assisi Roman Catholic Church, 136 Saxer Ave., Springfield, Pa. 19064, where Mr. Pennacchia was usher captain for many years. Burial will be in SS. Peter and Paul Cemetery, Marple Township.
Donations may be made to the church.