Obituary: Mario Testoni, 92

by | Mar 23, 2022

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Mario Testoni, 92, passed away, Sunday, March 20, at home surrounded by his loving family and beloved dog, Brody. Mario was born in Providence, on May 15, 1929, to the late Louis and Marie (Barra) Testoni. Mario was predeceased by his beautiful wife, Barbara Jean (Murray) Testoni and his brothers, Vito and Livio Testoni. He leaves behind his four children: Mark Testoni and his wife, Kirsten, of Petersburg Alaska; Gail Erinakes and her husband, Stephen, of East Greenwich; Paul Testoni and his wife, Pam, of East Greenwich; and Christine Testoni, of Warwick. Mario had seven grandchildren: Matthew, Allison, Lauren, Alex, Sarah, Meghan, and Nichols, as well as three great-granddaughters: Emily, Charlotte, and Madeline. Mario was also loved by his many nieces and nephews, and never failed to make them laugh.

Mario worked as a mechanical designer at Electric Boat for 33 years. Many of his designs are still used on submarines being produced today.

Upon his retirement, Mario began carving decoys and shore birds as a hobby. It was not long before Mario was entering his decoys in competitions. The pinnacle of his carving career came with his placing First in Category, Best in Division, and Third Best in Show in the Ward World Championship Wild Fowl Carving Competition of 2003.

Mario also had a love of cooking and continued to do so throughout his entire life. He was a connoisseur of Italian food and never missed an opportunity to share his recipes.

Any given morning, Mario could be found opening up Dunkin’ Donuts on Main Street wearing one of his many stylish hats. He soon became a fixture there and was loved by both customers and staff. Covid abruptly ended his visits and he missed them deeply. His dear friend, Danny Moone, continued to bring him his coffee every day until his death.

His family will lovingly remember his many stories and his unique delivery. He will live on in our hearts.

In accordance with Mario’s wishes, services will be private.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the New England Brittany Rescue in honor of Mario Testoni. He loved his dog, Brody and would be so appreciative of any support for the organization that gave him his best friend.

Top photo by Gemma Evans, courtesy of Unsplash.

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Lauren Testoni
Lauren Testoni
March 23, 2022 3:36 pm

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the New England Brittany Rescue in honor of Mario Testoni. He loved his dog, Brody and would be so appreciative of any support for the organization that gave him his best friend.

Heidi johnson
Heidi johnson
March 23, 2022 5:25 pm

I have such wonderful memories of my teen years, growing up in the warm and inviting home of Mario and Barbara Jean. I remember when I knew I was part of the family, when meeting Mario’s mother, who proclaimed, “Awwwwww, she has da curly hair!” I wasn’t Italian, but had a passionate Italian heart, and “da curly hair!” One of my favorite memories was when we’d all gather around to watch “All in the Family,” which Mario greatly enjoyed. He loved the stuff that came out of Archie Bunker’s mouth! Growing up myself in a family of introverts (in which I was the only extrovert!), going to the Testoni house was like transforming from black and white to technicolor experiences! I loved it! My heart goes out to the entire Testoni family, and to Mario’s dear friend Danny as well. Mario was an original, and I am so grateful for the family that they brought up in that house. Gail and I were great buddies in junior high school, and that introduced me to Mark, who became a part of my family as well. Sending love and sympathy to all those who are missing the indelible force that was Mario in their lives.

Tony & christine dacchioli
Tony & christine dacchioli
March 24, 2022 7:39 pm

Mario was a wonderfully caring person who always chatted with us at Dunkin. He was concerned with our health, with his family and close friends as well as the situation in the country and the world. We loved sharing our food recipes and learned how there were many different ways to prepare our favorite Italian foods. Those memories will always make us smile and his kindness will remain in our hearts. He will be missed. Our blessings and sympathy go out to each of his family members.

David Tikoian
David Tikoian
March 24, 2022 9:24 pm

As a Rhode Island State Trooper assigned to Governor Carcieri’s Security Detail, I had the distinct pleasure of meeting many nice people in neighborhood. Mario was one of those wonderful people. I often stopped at the Dunkin Dounts on Main Street early in mornings to have coffee with him and great conversations about a wide variety of topics. He was a talented wood carver, caving beautiful decoys and was very humble about his talent.
My sincere condolences and deepest sympathies to the Testoni family. Mario was a great man. He was proud of his family, his career and Italian heritage. I enjoyed our chats and and will miss his friendly demeanor and wit.

Very Respectfully,
David P. Tikoian
Rhode Island State Police

bruce mastracchio
bruce mastracchio
March 25, 2022 7:34 am

Mario was a good friend of my Father way back in the day, and, despite the age difference accompanied my Father on many of his trips, including “going for a cup of coffee” to New York City !!!! It was Mario, along with George King, Jim MacNie, and Fred Miller, who told me the tales of my Father and his pranks. My Father never told me a thing.
Mario will now join his Irish wife, Barbara, of the Murray clan and we all rejoice in that.
For his family, may you be surrounded by friends who care , memories that console, and love that heals. We will be holding you in our hearts as you go through this emotional time.

Bruce & Elaine Mastracchio

March 25, 2022 3:44 pm

So sorry for your loss, Mark

Lisa johnson
Lisa johnson
March 25, 2022 5:29 pm
Reply to  andy

Sincere condolences to the entire Testoni family. Your father was a wonderful person, I hope that the love of family and friends help ease your grief.
Thinking of you all, Lisa Hoyer Johnson


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