Stephen Robert DiGiovanni, age 66, of Newark, DE, passed away on Thursday, May 18, 2023. He was born in Chester, PA, son of Leo and Roseann (Dougherty) DeJohn. Stephen’s grandfather, Leonardo DiGiovanni, changed the family name to DeJohn to assimilate to American society. During a Malvern retreat, Steve met Dr. DiGiovanni who explained the origins of his surname and in 2014, he changed his last name to DiGiovanni.
Steve graduated from St. James High School in 1975 and joined the U.S. Army. He received an honorable discharge after being diagnosed with a heart arrhythmia.
Steve attended Widener University and studied Accounting. He left college to tend to family obligations and had a long career as a supervisor with Conoco Philips / BP. He had a life-long ambition to graduate from college before he passed away. He successfully graduated from the University of Delaware Paralegal certificate program and went on to earn an Associate’s degree in Legal Studies with a Concentration in Criminal Law from Widener University Law School. Steve then enrolled at the University of Delaware where he took challenging courses like Calculus and Physics. Steve was a senior in the midst of completing his final thesis paper on “The Reunification of Germany” when he passed away. He had two German courses left and had hoped to complete them in the Study Abroad program. He looked forward to graduating and earning his BA in History with a concentration in American History; he just didn’t want to, “wear the funny little hat and gown.”
Steve loved baseball and football for the pure love of the games. It didn’t matter who was playing, he watched for the thrill and strategy. He was also a huge fan of the Triple Crown races and had hoped to attend all three horse races in person. His wife, Josephine, surprised him with tickets to Belmont in June 2022. Steve was an entrepreneur at heart. He started selling seeds door to door, cut grass, and delivered papers as a young man. He started a handyman business in his spare time and delivered TVs when he wasn’t selling them. Steve was also interested in time and timepieces. He shared his love for mechanical watches with Francis and Alex.
He is survived by his wife, Josephine (Pelaia) DiGiovanni; his sons, Francis and daughter-in-law, Frances Fish, and Alexander Fish; his granddaughter, Annabelle Rose Fish; his mother, Roseann Geers, and his siblings, Christine DeJohn and Maria Marshall (Michael).
Steve was preceded in death by his father, Leo and brothers “Little” Leo and Hughie.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11:00am on Thursday, May 25, 2023, at the St. Thomas More Oratory, 45 Lovett Avenue, Newark, DE 19711, where family and friends may visit beginning at 10:00am. Interment will be held in All Saints Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Steve’s memory can be made to the St. Thomas More Oratory at the address listed above; or to the St. James High School Alumni Association, 1499 E. 9th Street, Eddystone, PA 19022.
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