Joao “John” Eduardo Castanheira of Newark, NJ passed away peacefully on February 1, 2024 at home surrounded by his family.
John was born in the Alfama district of Lisbon on September 8, 1943 to the late Arminda and Natalio Castanheira. He was one of nine siblings. In his childhood John loved swimming in the Tagus River and watching American Western films every Sunday at the local theater. A talented Fado singer, he began performing at local Fado houses in Lisbon when he was 14, including the Parreirinha de Alfama, which remains one the best Fado houses in Portugal.
He met his loving wife and life partner, Maria Rosa Salgado (nee) through a cousin and after a courtship they were married on January 28, 1963. John always dreamed of living in the US and he and Maria immigrated in 1976 with their children, Fernando & Silvia. John spent the majority of his career working for infrastructure contractors, J. Fletcher Cramer. Though he loved spending time on the beach, discussing history & politics and watching Jeopardy, his greatest joys were spending time with his six grandchildren and watching his beloved Benfica.
John will be remembered for his sharp and witty sense of humor, kind heart, endless generosity, brilliant mind and infectious smile. He was the life of the party and made friends everywhere he went. He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Maria Rosa Castanheira, his children, Fernando Castanheira, and his wife, Clara Castanheira; Silvia Gianni and her husband, Alexander Gianni, and grandchildren: Daniel Castanheira, Brian Castanheira, Zoe Gianni, Luca Gianni, Tristan Gianni & Emmeline Gianni.
A viewing will be held at Galante Funeral Home in Union, NJ on Monday, February 5, 2024 at 10am followed by entombment at Fairview Cemetery in Westfield, NJ.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the Lewy Body Dementia Association via lbda.org