Welcome. Edgartown News was born from the simple fact that I have ink and Dektol in my veins and I need to write and photograph more than I need air or food, and from my love for this little town where I grew up and raised my family, the town I have left a few times but can't quite shake for good. Here you will find wanderings and musings, photographs and commentary; the people, places, and happenings - past and present - of a small island town: my home town.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


Sadly, I learned today that my former step-father-in-law, Saverio "Sam" or "Rick" Riccio died last night (but am so glad to have had a very meaningful visit with him only eight days ago).

Coincidentally, Sam's Windemere roommate (and partner-in-mischief-and-good-times in Unit 2, from what I hear), died yesterday morning. When I read John Mayhew's obituary this morning in the Vineyard paper I thought, "Oh dear, Sam will be next." Within the hour, my sister-in-law called with the news of Sam's passing. So yes, you are reading this correctly: John died in the morning, his roommate and pal, Sam, died that night.

Life - and death - continue, at the very least, to fascinate me.

Sam was very proud of his military service and his involvement with the American Legion. This was taken in July of 2005.

Rest in peace, Sam.

Update, January 18, 2012.

I have added the obituary that appeared in the Vineyard newspapers, which I have amended to include his Thibodeau family survivors. 

Saverio (Sam) J. Riccio, a resident of Edgartown for many years, and most recently of Oak Bluffs, died on Tuesday, January 10, 2012. He was 94.

Sam was born on June 11, 1917 in Hartford, Connecticut, the son of Leonardo Riccio and Katrina Senatore Riccio. He was predeceased by his wife, Dorothy Viens (Thibodeau) Riccio, and his brothers, Leo, Thomas and Tony.

He was a WWII Army veteran, honorably discharged in 1945 after having served in the Philippines. Sam served as the weigh-master for the Martha's Vineyard Striped Bass and Bluefish Derby for many years, and was also employed by the Edgartown Harbormaster department as a wharfinger, tending to the many boats that tied up at the finger piers during the summer and making friends with the boaters and the steady stream of people who visited the docks - a job he loved and for which he was well suited and much appreciated.

Sam leaves behind his beloved daughters, Francine Stavola and Marie Mahoney, both of Connecticut, granddaughters Dina Stavola and Claudia Stavola Smith and her husband, Steve, of Connecticut, and great-granddaughter Sabrina Stavola of Connecticut; several nieces and nephews, as well as a step-daughter, Linda Benoit, of West Tisbury and a step-son, Edgar Thibodeau, of Connecticut; thirteen step-grandchildren: Jeffery and Craig Thibodeau and Danielle Kiro; Heather and Jessica Thibodeau and Amanda Adams; Eric and Keith Basset, Juliette Talbot, and Babette Benoit; Adam, Jonathan, and Maria Thibodeau, who, with their families, are spread out from Martha's Vineyard to Connecticut, New Hampshire, New Mexico, and Texas. Sam also leaves behind fourteen Thibodeau great-grandchildren and two great-greats.

He also leaves behind his dear friend, Richard Jennings and his wife, Carol Jennings, of Vineyard Haven, and many friends on the Island, all who will miss Sam very much. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in Sam's name to a charity of your choice.

A memorial mass and burial followed by a celebration honoring Sam's life is being planned for early April. For more information, please e-mail Dick Jennings: dcjennings1@verizon.net, or Pat Carlet: pcarlet@comcast.net.


  1. So fortunate to visit with Sam last week. Always looked forward to our early morning fishing, late night squidding and the many pasta meals together! We'll surely miss him, but will remember all those good times we had together...

    Reno and Chris Trubiano

  2. Thanks, Reno and Chris. Sam will be missed. I'm glad you were able to visit him. We feel lucky, too.

  3. I will miss my Uncle Sam more than words can express. The times we spent together on the island and the days we spent here in Fl. watching football, going to the track and eating..lol...will forever be in my heart.

    Paul Riccio
    p.s. I also have some great photos to share if someone can tell me how

  4. Hi, Paul - thanks for your comment. If you contact me via my blog profile at the bottom of the page we can talk about your photos. thanks! All the best, and I'm sorry for your (our) loss.