March 28, 1927 - December 21, 2020
Visitation: No Visitation
Service: Service and Entombment will be Private.
William F. Vita (March 28, 1927 – December 21, 2020). William “Bill” Vita was born in Ambridge, PA, the second son of Orlando (“Earl”) and Louise Vita, younger brother of Lawrence (“Dan”) Vita. A 1945 graduate of Avalon High School, Bill enlisted in the U.S. Navy in March 1945, just days after his 18th birthday. After basic training, he was assigned to a fleet oiler, the U.S.S. Salamonie. The Salamonie sailed to China after V-J day, and spent the remainder of 1945 and most of 1946 in Shanghai, China. Bill was discharged in 1946, and began attending classes at Pitt while also working full-time in downtown Pittsburgh; he received his bachelor’s degree in 1953. He met his future wife, Marjorie (Roos) at a dance at Assumption Church in Avalon; they married in 1951. Bill & Marge quickly started a family, ultimately raising 6 children. The Vita family moved to McCandless in 1960, becoming charter members of St. Alexis Roman Catholic Church when the parish was created in the early 1960’s.
Bill’s two passions in life were jazz and golf. He was a proficient alto saxophone player who, as a high schooler, was recruited for the Jimmy McKean band, the “house” band at the Colonial, a popular nightclub located on Ohio River Boulevard. Although he stopped playing his horn after enlisting in the Navy, he never lost his passion for jazz, and especially the jazz saxophone.
Even more than music, Bill loved golf — playing it, watching it on TV, attending tournaments (such as the Masters and US Open), and teaching it. His proficiency actually seemed to improve with age — twice in his 80’s he managed to “shoot his age” — a difficult task even for the most skilled of players.
Bill is preceded in death by his son Mark. He is survived by his loving family: Marjorie, wife of 69 years; daughter in-law Gigi; Stephen, Michael (Jean), Paul (Susan), Mary Ann Farrell (Robert), Christopher (Kathy) and thirteen grandchildren.
Donations in his memory can be made to the Pennsylvania Veterans Organization (https://paveterans.org/).