January 20, 1924 ~ October 14, 2021

Born in: Meriden, CT
Resided in: Middletown, CT

Alfred (Fred) Antonio, 97, of Middletown, passed away peacefully on Thursday, October 14, 2021 at The Weiss Hospice Unit at Middlesex Hospital. He was born in Meriden on January 20, 1924, the son of Dominic and Helen (Michalak) Antonio. He leaves his wife, Janice (Frazier) Antonio of Middletown, daughter Lynn Antonio-Tryon and husband Wayne Tryon of Glastonbury, and one brother, Robert Antonio (wife Nancy) of Moore, South Carolina. In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by two sisters, Marjorie (Antonio) Potter and Pauline (Antonio) Horonzy, and two brothers, Donald Antonio and Louis DeAntonio. He also leaves behind step-grandchildren Heather Tryon-Winship, her husband Matt Winship, and their children Lily and Katie, and Christian Tryon, his wife Rhonda Kauffman, and daughter Violet. He will also be missed by a large extended family of nieces and nephews, and many friends.
Fred led a good and full life. A proud WWII veteran, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy after graduating high school at the age of 18 and served 3 ½ years on the attack transport ship the USS Sumter, and carried troops and equipment to 6 islands in the South Pacific. He received several awards as a Machinist Mate First Class. His uniform is now on display at the Greater Middletown Military Museum.
After he was honorably discharged from the Navy in 1946, Fred joined his brother Louis in the construction business and later partnered with his brother Donald to establish Antonio Brothers Builders in Meriden. Together, Fred and Don built custom homes and did residential and commercial remodeling for 35 years. He also served a term as President of the Meriden Builders Association.
Fred was a faithful member of the First Baptist Church in Meriden and served as Chairman of the Deacons and Chairman of the Property Committee of the Church Board of Trustees. His talents, interests and accomplishments were many and varied: In addition to the builders’ association and church positions Fred held, he was a member of the Elks, Unison Club and VFW clubs in Meriden, the Meriden Y’s Men, and the Durham Gun Club. He did so many things, and did them well. Fred was a lifelong learner. He played tennis, and was a bowler, skier, hunter (with his German Shorthair Pointer Schatzchen by his side), fisherman, and winemaker. He golfed until he was 96 years old. In his twenties, Fred got his pilots’ license and owned a plane with 8 of his buddies. In his eighties, he taught himself to play the banjo. He loved music, from classical to country, opera to swing. He enjoyed travel, visiting Europe numerous times and traveling extensively throughout the United States, frequently in conjunction with his Navy reunions. After retirement; he took on and pursued another interest, fine arts and painting in many mediums, watercolor being his favorite. He studied under local artists, joined Gallery 53 in Meriden, Brownstone Art in Middletown, and served a term as President of the Middletown Art Guild. He exhibited his artwork at local craft fairs and art shows and won several awards for his paintings. Fred was a truly remarkable man who touched the lives of many during his long life, a kind, decent soul with a big heart and great sense of humor. But most of all, Fred was a loving, devoted husband and father who cherished time with family and friends.
A memorial celebration of life will be held at the First Baptist Church, 460 Broad Street, Meriden on Wednesday, October 27 at 10:00 a.m. Burial will follow in Walnut Grove Cemetery. Funeral arrangements will be handled by Beecher & Bennett-Flatow Funeral Home, 48 Cook Ave., Meriden. In lieu of flowers, donations in Fred’s memory may be made to the First Baptist Church, 460 Broad Street, Meriden, CT 06450 and/or the Middlesex Health Hospice Program, 21 Pleasant Street, Middletown, CT 06057.

Services

Memorial Service: October 27, 2021 10:00 am

First Baptist Church of Meriden
460 Broad Street
Meriden, CT 06450

203-237-5529

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  1. Fred will be greatly missed! He was an inspiration to us on how to live a life full of being positive and kind to everyone. He will remain in our thoughts and prayers.
    With all our Love, Al & Linda Mignone

  2. Fred was a great friend and brother in Christ. Will cherish the paintings done by Fred. We love you Fred and will see you again. Best wishes to you Jan

  3. Fred will be missed by family and friends. A kind and talented man. Sincere sympathies to the family, with Love.

  4. I enjoyed seeing Fred and my cousin Jan at Fred’s art shows and at their home. I enjoyed viewing Fred’s beautiful art work as it’s now truly an inspiration to me.
    I will miss Fred with his kindness and humor. I enjoyed our conversations. Sincere sympathies to Fred’s family.
    Steve

  5. I didn’t get to really know my Uncle Fred until his later years but I cherished the time that I got to spend with him and Aunt Jan. I will miss seeing his smile across the dinner table as it always reminded me of his mothers, my Grandmother. My deepest sympathies go out to my Aunt Jan and cousin Lynn, who were so very lucky to have Uncle Fred in their lives. Love you both…

  6. Fred was the greatest friend and neighbor. He always was there if you needed a hand. Even though he had 30 years on me, he still “schooled” me on the tennis court. My girls spend more time in his pool than Janice and him! It was always fun to play golf with him. He was a kind, gentle, soul and I will miss his laugh and the twinkle in his eyes.

  7. Fred, a truly gentle man and a gentleman. I have fond memories of our limited time together, our picnics, your art 🖼, and looking at the stars through your telescope. God bless

  8. Fred was a wonderful friend and a remarkable man. He could build a house, whip up clams casino, drive a golf ball many yards, paint a beautiful landscape, ski the trickiest slopes, play a tune on the banjo and tell the funniest jokes…all with a smile on his face. He will be missed, but never forgotten!
    Rest In Peace, good friend.

  9. I first meant Fred & Don in the early 80’s when they were doing work at Times Wire & Cable. I was reunited with him when he began his serving our Lord at First Baptist Church.
    Fred is one of the finest Christian me that I have ever had the honor of knowing.

  10. Janice,
    We will miss seeing Fred’s smiling face as he walked the neighborhood. Our thoughts and prayers will always be with you.

  11. Jan, Lynn and family –
    Fred was the kindest, gentlest man I have known. While I knew he had many talents and interests, I was amazed by all those listed in his beautiful obituary. He really knew how to live his life to the fullest. I hope your many happy memories of him provide you comfort.

  12. “Uncle Fred” was a wonderful, caring, energetic man. I cherish the memories of swimming in the pool with Gunner the dog, the day he took me to his basement storage area to choose any watercolor for my birthday, and most of all his smile and laugh. Fred and Janice were wonderful friends and neighbors to my parents, my sister, and me. He was a very special soul and will be missed. I feel lucky to have known him.

  13. Fred led an amazing life. He certainly made the best of his time. His life serves as an example to all.
    May he Rest In Peace.

  14. I feel very privileged to have known Fred and Janice. I love them both. Fred was amazing. He was so talented, had a great sense of humor, and a role model for all of us.

  15. A true gentleman and a wonderful neighbor and friend. We will miss Fred’s smiling face. May he sleep sweetly. Our deepest sympathies to Jan and the entire Antonio family.
    Gary & Cathy Jordan

  16. I have only know Fred and Janice a few years but I will always remember the hugs Fred would give every time he saw you! Such a wonderful, kind man who will be missed by so many! He was especially touched by the kindness we showed Janice when he got sick! Fred Rest In Peace! It was a gift having you as a friend!

  17. Janice,
    Fred will surely be missed. He was such a wonderful human being. Thoughtful, positive, caring man. Dave and he celebrated the same birthday, which they teased each other about.
    With Sincere Sympathy,
    Pat Storrs

  18. Jan –

    We enjoyed 15 great years of travel, friendship, and birthday celebrations with you and Fred. We miss him dearly.

    Marie & Gene

  19. Fred was such a warm and wonderful neighbor. He and Janice made a point of welcoming us when we had just arrived in the community. What a remarkable life he led; so many interests and talents. He will be missed by all. Our deepest sympathy to Janice and the whole family. Our hearts are with you all.
    Eric and Ali DeBarba

  20. During mid-2020, after getting back from Florida, Kathy and I were taking a short neighborhood stroll and decided to go by Fred and Jan’s house because we knew he wasn’t getting out very much. Jan saw us and opened the front door, telling us that Fred was at the dining room window waving. Then he wanted the window opened so we could talk to each other. Since COVID was still going strong, we got just close enough so we could understand one another. I’m not sure how long we were there, but when we said goodbye we realized how Fred had boosted our spirits with his kind words and cheery nature. That was what Fred did.
    Always friendly. Always caring. Always interested in others.
    Jan, we know how much you miss him, but the memories he left you with will surely help to ease your burden. God bless you, and God bless Fred for the kind of life he lived
    Leo and Kathy

  21. I salute you old timer and it is an honor to have known you and to be part of your family. May you Rest In Peace.

  22. So sorry about the passing of Fred Always enjoyed his company at the art exhibits.
    He was truly a gentle man that will be truly missed.

  23. Ed and I are so sorry to hear of Fred’s passing. He was such a wonderful, caring and thoughtful neighbor when we lived in Middletown. Our deepest sympathies to Jan and all of the family.

  24. I’m so very sorry to learn of Fred’s passing. My husband and I lived across the street from Fred and Jan for 30 years. Fred and his brother Don built our garage and our shed. We were frequently included in dinners at their home. Fred routinely gave us vegetables from his garden. He was a terrific neighbor, a kind, multi-talented man, always upbeat and happy. So many memories, so many funny stories! ❤️

  25. I will forever cherish the memories made with Uncle Fred and am so grateful for his willingness to share (and document!) his life story for generations of Antonio’s to enjoy.

    He was always so kind and an absolute joy to be around. His enduring relationship with his brother, my grandpa, set an example that I strive to instill in my own children.

    I know it’s no coincidence that God chose the same birthday, 94 years later, for my daughter. I pray uncle Fred’s legacy will continue with her as she develops some of the same beautiful traits I saw in him.

  26. so sorry to hear this. loved that man, great artist, great person. much sympathy to his wife and family and friends.

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