Calvin Robert Ferrari
  • 63 years old
  • Date of birth: Mar 25, 1948
  • Place of birth:
    Hazleton, Pennsylvania, United States
  • Date of passing: Dec 8, 2011
  • Place of passing:
    Sugarloaf, Pennsylvania, United States
Let the memory of Cal be with us forever

I would like to thank my Mom Pat Ferrari for everything. I love you mom!

Many of you knew my Dad, Cal, as a friend, teacher, coach, or relative.  To me I knew him as my Hero. To understand this you all must realize he was a descendant of heroes. My Father Calvin R Ferrari was named after his dad’s brother Calvin C  Ferrari who was a fighter pilot shot down over occupied Germany during WW2 and was a Prisoner of War. After hearing this news, my grandfather Frank immediately enlisted in the army and upon returning home from the War, he passed a way a few years later from injuries he received during combat.  They both received the Purple Heart medal of Honor. 

So at the young age of 5 my father was put into the position of being the man of the house.  From an early age he took this role in stride and moved forward off the incredible strength and courage of my late grandmother Adelle.  They talked every single day and had quite a special bond together.  During his high school years my grandmother Adelle broke her ankle as was out of work.  He took on two jobs to support the family.  Cal was such a selfless, non materialistic person and has made so many sacrifices for the people he loved.

Shortly after my parents married they moved to Sugarloaf. Where my dad yearned for the simple life and to live amongst nature.  He was super content raising a family and tending to his garden--cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, fruit trees, strawberry patches, concord grape vines and blueberry bushes.  He would spend hours meticulously and methodically tending to these crops every year during his summer vacation. Shortly their after in 1981 his most prized crop sprouted up….Me.  I was someone whom he dedicated such a large part of his life to. My earliest memories of my dad were that of him coming home from teaching school.  I would wait would wait anxiously for him by the window.  He would come walking up the steps; I would take a running start from the kitchen jumping off the top step, him catching me halfway.  I remember being so happy to see him.  Back then he seemed larger than life, big and strong and absolutely invincible.  But at the same time also had such a warm, endearing, cuddly, inviting nature to him.  You would always feel welcome and wanted around my dad. 

Early on in grade school he didn’t like how long it took the school bus to get me to and from school.  From that day on he and my mom would go out of their way to drop me off and pick me up.  I got really tired of listening to soft rock MAGIC 93 and Frankie in the morning.

My Dad always gave such good advice and possessed an incredible level of common sense.  He had the ability to think things out long before they happened and could somehow often predict the future.  He infused into my brain so many of life’s important lessons.  He always told me that all he ever wanted from me was to make him proud and to always do my best.  Do things the right way.  Up to this day, I have strived to meet those expectations.  This has been my what has motivated me and will continue to motivate me moving forward.

My Dad was ALWAYS there for me. He was like my second set of eyes and ears.  He was soooo loving, caring and affectionate. Once in a while we had our own Theo Huxtible moments.  And from time to time I made some mistakes, boy did I make some mistakes.  Afterwards, when I felt down and out and didn’t think I could go forward.  He was right their to pick me up…. EVERY…. SINGLE….. TIME; dusting me off, and guiding me back on track--- he was my emotional rock. You see my dad taught me that a man is not judged by how hard he falls, but rather how fast he gets up.

Cal dedicated his life to education, to the service and the betterment of others.  He carried himself with high integrity, honor, and dignity.  During the day the classroom was his stage, helping his students visualize, learn and understand different concepts. He demanded excellence from his students and would go out of his way to find ways to get the best out of each pupil he came in contact with. In the evenings he turned to Athletic Directing and coaching some of these same kids through sport competitions.   You see my father was very competitive, but often measured athletic success not by wins and losses, but by the way his team played the game.   My dad always had that loud gym class voice even when he wasn’t in the gym.  People often thought he was screaming, but that was just how he talked.  I could see him taking the attendance roll right now.

I remember having my dad as a sex/ed health teacher in junior high school.  There is only one word that can describe this.  Awkward. He started by just popping in a movie and leaving the classroom.  I remember acting up early on in the class, he picked me up, took me to the nearby closet, and hung me their by the exterior tag on my shirt.  I still remember the definition of health that he drilled into my head - a complete state of mental, social, and physical well being; not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.  I still don’t exactly know what infirmity means.  

After high school we hit a lil bit of a crossroads.  My dad really wanted me to move into the other house we had nextdoor, stay close and go to college locally.  I remember having a long talk with him. I said I wanted move to a big city for business opportunities and to see what was out there.  He made me promise to call him often and keep him updated on what I was up to.  12 years later we spoke almost every day on the phone.  That’s what I will really miss the most.  As I grew from a country mouse to a city dweller, he would always make sure I continued to hold my small town values in place.  We shared many things in common--this included the love for new technology and gadgets, computers, Sport Utility Vehicles and Jeeps, hating to wear neck ties, and especially Penn State football.  During the 90s we would travel week after week to state college with my dad and grandfather Jim “Gassy” Horn to tailgate and attend the games.  After that, we would watch the games on TV in different cities, but talk for quarters at a time on the phone during the contest.  Game after game we would so easily predict Joe Paterno’s play calling.  Vividly remember my dad yelling into the phone…. Hes gonna run it up the middle, don’t run it up the middle Joe, everyone knows it, don’t do it.  And then of course it happened.  

My dad, J he loved to chill, had a wonderful sense of humor and was good company--family or friends, a ball game on TV, a soda or sometimes jack and coke, that was his happy place.  He taught me to stop and enjoy the simple things in life.

Being the rural country person that my dad was he never quite grasped the convenience of taxicab service.  As I traveled I never wanted to park my car at the airport.  He always offered to drive 2 hours to pick me up, drive me ten minutes to the airport, then drive 2 hours home.  That was my dad.

Our last extended conversation was Wednesday night.  We would talk weather and sports everyday.  However, that day we talked most about that new planet 600 light years away….Keplar 22b.  How it could potentially sustain life and the future possibility one day of intergalactic travel.  I could imagine he is headed there right now to check things out.

Over the past few months he let me know often about how he felt about my mom and me.  He would talk openly about how his time here was short, and I would always try to change the subject.  2 weeks ago he told me he had a dream he read his own obituary in the newspaper.  Recently he told me—Son…I love you so much and Im very proud of how you carry yourself and the professional man you have become.  Deep down I could tell he was satisfied and very content that he had done his job.

He said your gonna be the man of the house soon.  Take care of your mother and never stop chasing your dreams. I have realized my dad prepared us our whole life for his passing.  Even though my father’s earthly body sits cremated right here before us, my mom and I now have a deeper understanding that it is his spirit that will stay alive forever.

God bless and thank you.

Memorial Tributes
This tribute was added by Pamela Valvano on 25th March 2012

  Such a beautiful tribute to your Dad.  I imagine he is checking out Keplar 22b, but with his buddy, Frank.  I miss them both terribly.  :'-("

This tribute was added by Jane Acoveno on 19th February 2012

"Calvin , my cousin, many memories of our childhood games and family get togethers, Pat and Chad always keep happy memories and when someone is no longer here in our physical world they will always remain in our hearts and minds..I smile when I think of Calvins great serious sense of humor...I hear him saying "red rover red rover "....."

This tribute was added by Mary Horn Holman on 31st January 2012

"You are in my thoughts and prayers. I'll miss your dad too. He was a great guy. Wonderful husband and father. Lots of love to you and your mom."

This tribute was added by roe terreri on 18th January 2012

you are in my thoughts and prayers"

This tribute was added by carolyn alimecco on 30th December 2011

"My deepest sympathies to the Ferrari family.  I recall fondly the days as an athletic office assistant with Mr. Ferrari at WHHS.  There were a few of us and we were probably acting up and he just sat there with a smile on his face waiting for us to settle down.  He was a great man and a kind soul and he will be missed.   Rest in Peace Mr. Ferrari.  Carolyn Alimecco, Class of '85"

This tribute was added by Linda Dodson-Davis on 27th December 2011

"Patty and Chad, I'm sitting here looking at Cal's senior picture (I still have a box with everybody's picture,). Cal wrote "Linda, to a real movin' chick, best luck and success in future endeavors.  Sure to have fun and fortune.  RMA Cal"  What a wonderful written legacy you leave ,Chad.  For YOUR children and grand children. Patty, remembered friend, for childhood's sake,my sympathy and love"

This tribute was added by Stephanie Lucyk Wiswall on 22nd December 2011

"I was very sad to hear of the loss of a great teacher, a great father, and a great man.  My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family."

This tribute was added by Paula Piacenti on 16th December 2011

"Patti and Chad,
   What a beautiful send off for Cal--you must know Rich and I were so fond of that "gentleman" Cal. Rich had earlier memories of Cal than I, I really got to know the "coach" and watched his gentle but firmness with those girls and the winning and fun they had as a team. But of course I REALLY got to know him with our fun Dinner club."

This tribute was added by Nancy DeMara on 16th December 2011

"Cal went from a classmate who could shoot the eyes out of a basketball to a respected teaching colleague. A dear friend for 40 plus years. He will be sorely missed.
     Jim & Nancy"

This tribute was added by Heidi Dyches on 14th December 2011

"He was a great teacher and truly kind person.  Comp Sci was one of my favorite classes because of him.  What a great listener...."

This tribute was added by Lisa Lewis on 14th December 2011

"Thoughts and prayers go out to the Ferrari family... Cal was a wonderful man...a great teacher... he and my dad can now have a beer in Heaven together... Rest in Peace... WHHS Class of '88"

This tribute was added by Christine Herring on 14th December 2011

"I have many fond memories of Mr. Ferrari at WHHS, he was a wonderful teacher and a great friend to my parents.  I will never forget health classes in the dungeon.  Thank you for being the kind of teacher evey child should have!!!!  Rest in Peace.

Christine Milot Herring class of 1990"

This tribute was added by Thomas Smith on 14th December 2011

"Pat and Chad,
I was deeply saddened to learn of Cal's passing.  I would like to extend my deepest sympathy to you and your family.  I knew Cal for many years and had the utmost respect for him.  I admired the way he took care of Gassy and Martha.  He never passed me without saying hello.  The world has lost a good man.  Rest in peace."

This tribute was added by Pat Kessler on 14th December 2011

"My deepest sympathy to the Ferrari family.  Cal was such a caring person and always enjoyed his sense of humor.  He will be missed. I always considered it a privilege to be able to cut his hair.
Pat Kessler"

This tribute was added by Tammy Good on 14th December 2011

"Always kind, always a smile. Thank you Mr. Ferrari. You will be missed. May you rest peacefully in the light...."

This tribute was added by Jackie Tricolli on 13th December 2011

"We will miss you, Coach.  The Lady Wildcats, 1979-81, loved you!  You were kind and gentle yet molded us to be a winning team - and we had so much fun along the way because of you!  I will never forget your patience and guidance - and the birth of Chad.  That was a momentous event for the entire team!  God bless, Mrs. Ferrari and Chad - Big Cal was a good man.  (WHHS '81)"

This tribute was added by lisa washco on 13th December 2011

"I'm so sorry for your loss.  May God give you peace, comfort and strength during this time. Coach Ferrari made a difference in many lives, including mine. (WHHS '82)"

This tribute was added by Sue Farley on 13th December 2011

"Pat, I'm so sorry to hear of your loss"

This tribute was added by Mike Green on 13th December 2011


This tribute was added by Melissa Hague on 13th December 2011

"A great teacher and neighbor.  RIP Mr. Ferrari.  -Class of '88"

This tribute was added by Girard Fewins on 13th December 2011

"Sorry for your loss.  He was a great teacher and a caring teacher.  RIP Mr Ferrari .  Class of 88"

This tribute was added by Peter Notaro on 13th December 2011

"Cal was my best lunch friend when we were at WHHS.  I am certain God has taken him to a much better place.  Pete Notaro"

This tribute was added by Stuart Walser on 13th December 2011

"My Thoughts and Prayers to his Family"

This tribute was added by Bob Trishman on 13th December 2011

""A great teacher and coach! RIP Mr. Ferrari. Class of 73""

This tribute was added by Janelle Neikum on 13th December 2011

"Rest In Peace Mr Ferrari - You Were A Great Teacher, And Will Be Greatly Missed By All The Students Who Had The Privilege Of Knowing You.. A Great Person, & Coach!! You Will Never Be Forgotten!!  My Thoughts Are With Your Family @ This Time*
(Hazleton Area High School - Class Of '99)"

This tribute was added by Tracy Lillis on 13th December 2011

"My deepest condolences on the passing of one our Greats.  I have a lot of wonderful memories of Mr. Ferrari.  My thoughts and prayers to his loved ones.  I hope you take comfort in knowing just how many lives he positively affected.  He will be remembered by so many for so much.  RIP Mr. Ferrari. (WHHS '87)"

This tribute was added by Denise Wagner on 13th December 2011

""He was more then a teacher and coach, He was a friend. Heaven definately has another angel. Sympathy and prayers to his loved ones. (WHHS '88)"

This tribute was added by Alice Vislocky on 13th December 2011

"Please accept my condolences on your loss; Mr. Ferrari was such a wonderful person and caring teacher.  (WHHS '87)"

This tribute was added by Alicia Ann on 13th December 2011

"He was a good teacher and a coach.. He will be missed by all... Class of '04"

This tribute was added by Samantha O'neill on 13th December 2011

"I joined the volleyball team the last year he was head coach. He was the one who taught me how to serve correctly... It took hours but i still remember him standing next to me and patting me on the shoulder when i finally got it right. Amazing coach and a great teacher!        

He will be missed!"

This tribute was added by Joelle Bonomo on 12th December 2011

"I can't even begin to express how sorry I am to hear this. He was, and always will be, not only my favorite teacher, but one of my favorite people. I loved the days that I would run into him in random places. He was always happy to see me and would greet me with a warm hug. Prayers to the Ferrari family, I will forever keep him in my heart. xoxo"

This tribute was added by John Grobelny on 12th December 2011

"Very sad day.  Lost my catcher and fellow hoopster, but, most importantly, a good friend.  God bless, Yosh."

This tribute was added by Scott Roberts on 12th December 2011

"Great teacher and coach! Class of 86."

This tribute was added by Chrissy Mendofik-Donnelly on 12th December 2011

"My deepest sympathies to the Ferrari family. Mr Ferrari was a great teacher and wonderful man. I had the pleasure of knowing him during my high school years at WHHS, both during school and through the summers when I worked int he office. He was a very kind and easy going teacher who loved his students and expected the best from them. He will be greatly missed.GOD REST HIS SOUL."

This tribute was added by Ian Conahan on 12th December 2011

"Mr. Ferrari was a great person.  I send my condolences to Chad and his family."

This tribute was added by Leah Valvano on 12th December 2011

"I'm so sorry for your loss.  I have fond memories of our families together when I was little.  Cal was always so friendly, and he and my dad were so funny together.  Chad, I know that even at our age, it can feel like we're too young to be without our dads.  Please know that you're not alone.  I'd like to picture them up there together."

This tribute was added by Pamela Valvano on 12th December 2011

"My family will never forget "Big Cal", as our beloved Frank used to call him. He truly was a gentle giant. I like to think he and Frank are together enjoying a cocktail and talking basketball."

This tribute was added by Brandon Demko on 12th December 2011

"RIP Mr. Ferrari.  One of the most memorable educators that I had the privilege of knowing.  Deepest condolences to my childhood friend Chad and his family."

This tribute was added by Elizabeth Lazarsky on 12th December 2011

"My sister, Kathryn Geary, and I would like to send our prayers to the family of Mr. Ferrari.  He was a great man with a wonderful sense of humor.  Back in my high school days he would call me a curly q'd pain in the neck!!! He will be missed."

This tribute was added by Stephanie Texeira on 12th December 2011

"I remember when Mr Ferrari had me in gym class, he always made me smile. He had pick me up off the floor many times when I injured myself in gym class because I did something stupid. When I was having a hard time in school he was always there to talk to me. He was always a shoulder to cry on. The only regret I have is that I never got to show him pictures of our kids to show him I am ok."

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