November 22, 1931 - June 14, 2020
Dearly loved husband and father Otto William Taddei was born on November 22, 1931, in Hackensack, New Jersey. A first generation American, his parents, Lena Taddei (née Lohmeier) and Decio Michele Taddei, immigrated from Germany and Italy, respectively – although his father’s native city had been in the Austro-Hungarian Empire when he was born. Baptized and confirmed at Immanuel Lutheran Church in East Rutherford, near Carlstadt, New Jersey, this church offered German language services. Bilingual for nearly his entire life, Otto spoke German at home with his parents until learning English among other children in kindergarten. He attended Wood-Ridge public schools, graduating from Wood-Ridge High School in 1949, where he played on the football team with great enthusiasm and skill. He enlisted in the US Army after graduation during the period of the Korean Conflict, but did not serve overseas. Otto attended the Newark College of Engineering (now the New Jersey Institute of Technology) on the GI Bill, earning a BS in Chemical Engineering. He remained active in the American Legion for some years after his service. After meeting Maria Schneider at another couple’s wedding, the two became engaged and married on May 5, 1962. Their wedding took place at Advent Lutheran Church, on Broadway and West 95th Street in New York City, not far from where Maria grew up on the Upper West Side. Maria is also a first generation American, with parents from Finland and Alsace (a region that was alternately German and French during her father’s lifetime). Otto was to remain a dedicated churchgoer throughout his life, finding new spiritual homes wherever he lived, but with Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Ridgewood, New Jersey and Concordia as the two principal sites. Residing first in Elizabeth, New Jersey, they then moved to Otto’s family home in Wood-Ridge, and then to Ridgewood, an affluent leafy suburb a few miles north in 1967. In the intervening time, their sons Marc and Michel were born in 1963 and 1965, respectively, and daughter Lia was to arrive in 1973. With the exception of a year-long sojourn in Houston, Texas for professional reasons, Ridgewood was to be the family’s home until Otto and Maria moved to Sarasota in 1997. Otto and Maria chose Sarasota as their retirement location because of the rich cultural offerings in the city. Marc and Michel performed in Sarasota and nearby on a number of occasions, but even without their participation, Otto and Maria avidly attended concerts and opera performances here. During his professional career, Otto worked for FMC Corporation then for Lurgi GmbH, now Air Liquide, S.A., a German-based company specializing in petroleum engineering. His language skills and Chemical Engineering training were very valuable there, and frequent international travel was a hallmark of his time at Lurgi. He later worked for the Davy McKee and Foster Wheeler corporations, and held positions of Executive Vice President at each of these firms. Even while he was still working full time, Otto had a number of other passions. Fine wine and dining; cooking at home from humble barbecues to elaborate gastronomic feasts; watching football; high-end audio; the outdoors, with family camping trips, hiking and backpacking with Boy Scout trips, and fishing, which remains a passion for Lia; and most particularly Classical Music. While Otto did not play an instrument himself, he and Maria were so delighted and proud that their children all engaged so deeply in musical study and performance, with Marc and Michel pursuing music as a career, and Lia following serious study. In retirement, Otto and Maria accumulated many frequent flyer miles to share in their children’s successes, musical and otherwise, and see where they were making their homes, whether in New York, San Francisco, France, or New Zealand. Otto was known for his amazing generosity, inviting friends of his children out for meals and offering places to stay whenever those friends were in need. It isn’t every child of immigrants, raised during the Great Depression and periods of conflict, who could engage so fully in the artistic and creative pursuits of their children. The family remain so inspired by, and grateful for this. Otto passed away at home after a brief illness on June 14, 2020. The family were present at his last moments, and he derived so much satisfaction from knowing that all would be reassembled in Sarasota for him at his passage. The family are so grateful for your prayers and loving thoughts at this time. Otto is survived by his wife Maria Taddei, of Sarasota, Florida, sons Marc Taddei of Wanaka, New Zealand and Michel Taddei of Oakland, California, and daughter Lia Taddei of Vallejo, California.
Dearly loved husband and father Otto William Taddei was born on November 22, 1931, in Hackensack, New Jersey. A first generation American, his parents, Lena Taddei (née Lohmeier) and Decio Michele Taddei, immigrated from Germany and Italy,... View Obituary & Service Information
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