At sixty-three years, Paul passed on Thursday, October 31, 2019, in Virginia, supported by his wife San and sister Rosemary (Michael). He is survived by his son Nicholas by his first wife Mary, granddaughter Nikkie, siblings Leisa, Christopher (Melanie), niece Kathryn, nephews Richard (Marjorie) and Carl (Amelia), great nephew Alfred, as well as scores of beloved cousins, aunts, uncles and a world of friends.
A seventh generation Washingtonian on both family sides, Paul would grow up in Silver Spring Maryland and explore the planet throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. His strong Catholic faith, work ethic and many careers were spurred by his zest for life but may also be traced to his parents. His father Paul Sr. served in the Navy, then became a D.C. Policeman, D.C. Fireman, and builder. Paul's mother Ann worked for the Coast Guard, the National Institutes of Health as the Special Projects Officer in the Office of the Protection of Human Subjects of Research and as a high school teacher. All the while, she continued as church Director of Liturgical Music and Choir Director, performing and teaching piano, organ, voice, and chorus.
As a teen, Paul became an altar boy, loved sports such as football, boating and swimming, worked with pet fish in an aquarium store and helped build the DC subway. He also discovered his passions: writing, video, composing, musical instruments and singing. He would manage bands, produce and record their records. With the Air Force Entertainment division, Paul got performing experience on stage, in front of throngs of people. Rhythm and Blues, Rock'n'Roll perfected his movements and comedic timing to bring the audience along for the ride.
"There are no coincidences; Just God's way when He wants to remain anonymous".
Paul truly believed there was purpose to every encounter and experienced each moment, taking time to listen, see, and find a way to help. During his nine years as United States Air Force veteran, he never saw combat and was first stationed at bases throughout the U.S. Thus, Paul found himself as one of the snow plowers for Boston's Blizzard of '78's record-breaking 27.1 inches. He became stationed at Osan AFB in peacetime South Korea as part of the special operations of the RED HORSE Civil Engineering Squadron - Rapid Engineer Deployable Heavy Operational Repair Squadron Engineer. He helped build the mountaintop highways of the country and instructed new recruits on every imaginable piece of heavy equipment. When he and his partner in their two trucks came upon a head-on collision of a local bus on a switchback road, the two managed to pull everyone out through the front windshield. After receiving commendations, they were commanded to the mountain village to receive in-person thanks from the saved residents. Later he would heed the calling to volunteer with the USO in helping exhausted troops returning home or being deployed at LAX find their ways. His constant upbeat spirit was contagious.
Paul's careers continued. He cared for the official uniforms of the NFL Washington Redskins during their Super Bowl Championship and became an expert restoration painter of historic houses. His civil engineering experience always came in handy, whether as construction superintendent saving the six million-dollar Beverly Hills build from a winter deluge by constructing an entire irrigation system or when a field suddenly needed to be plowed during a film shoot. Paul saved the day by jumping on a tractor and finishing the deed. Paul continued to compose and spent years in the entertainment industry. He wrote movies for British and Swedish studios, worked on both live concerts, live music series and music videos for American and Japanese television, and producing & line producing national commercials for well-known products that won big awards and played during the Super Bowl.
"If you find a person without a smile, give them yours".
Many of God's Creatures, Great and Small noted that he made a difference, whether insect gingerly lifted out of the house to the garden or hummingbird crashing against the window until Paul offered - and it immediately jumped into - his hand. He would bring many home. The German Shepherd dodging cars on the highway, frantically looking for her puppies. The homeless Robert whose last bastion - his van - had been towed. After a few days of food, sleep, Paul's clothes, some cash and a drive, he was the following week discovered by the LA Times as an up and coming artist. These were common occurrences for Paul.
Paul fulfilled his Dad's final years with humor as full time caretaker. Then came Paul's own diagnosis. As the strongest warrior, he fought the one-year prognosis and managed five, never letting the illness define him. And, forever the writer, he prayed and wrote each day for all and, finally, for himself: "And when there is nothing physically left, my spirit will continue to survive and thrive from this plane to the next. For my spirit is the driving force that has and will transcend all." - written two years ago, almost to the day.
Please join us at 11am on Saturday, November 23, 2019, at St. Patrick's Catholic Church, 4101 Norbeck Road, Rockville, MD 20853, for a Celebration of Paul's Life, with visitation, stories and words of remembrance; Memorial Mass will begin at 12 noon. Following Mass, all are welcome to join the family at a luncheon at Mama Lucia Restaurant, 18224 Village Center Drive, Olney, MD 20832.
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