Beloved by many, Ronald Vincent Cavallo, left this world on March 30, 2022. Also known as “Ronnie C”, he was a force of life, light and love that words could never fully pay tribute, but we will try. Ron was the youngest of three children, brother to Gene and Liz, and was the only child to Patricia Sposato Cavallo and Vincent Cavallo. He was also the proud “fun uncle Ron” to Ian, Marlee, Juliette, Kassia and Gabrielle. If you were to ask Ron to name one of his heroes growing up, he would not hesitate to say his brother, Gene. Ron always credited Gene with shaping his effortless ability to lovingly tease people he cared about. Teasing was Ron’s language of love, and he spoke it freely and without hesitation. Often, he would come through the door and before you could say hello, he had a joke, usually at your expense, ready to greet you. Truth be told, if Ron was making fun of you, then Ron loved you. From the time he was a young boy, Ron had a deeply compassionate heart and was always ready to help anyone in need. A perfect example would be when his grandfather came to live with him and his parents. Although a child, Ron took an active role in caring for his grandfather with his day-to-day needs. Never a wallflower, Ron was also a rambunctious kid, always wrapped up in pranks with his beloved cousins, Anthony and Michael, as well as with his beloved Sposato/Refino cousins. These two traits would only grow and become more refined as Ron grew up, thereby making him one of the most dynamic individuals you would meet. After graduating from Carmel High School, Ron attended Westchester Community College to pursue his Associates Degree. It was there, at the tender age of 19, that he would meet the love of his life, his forever girlfriend, Joan (“Joanie”) Popovic. Ron first laid eyes on Joanie in a dance class, and if asked, he would tell you the minute Joanie looked at him, with her “blue eyeshadow and big earrings”, he was in love. So much so that he would later tell her he loved her on their first date. Soon, Ron and Joanie would go their separate ways to different colleges, Joanie to SUNY New Paltz and Ron to Stony Brook, but the distance would prove to only strengthen their bond. Whether it was Ron riding his motorcycle immediately after classes to make the 131 mile trip to see Joanie at New Paltz, or talking on the phone until Joanie fell asleep, their love story was one for the ages. At such a young age, Ron knew what he wanted, and he wanted Joanie. On August 21, 1994, Ron got Joanie, for good. At the Most Holy Trinity Church in Yonkers, New York, Ron married Joanie in front of family and friends, on probably one of the hottest days of the year. No, there was no air conditioning in the Church that day, and Ron would never let you forget it. Almost 28 years later, their reception at the Davenport Club in New Rochelle, New York is still considered by many as one of the best. Why? Because any party Ron was at was a party you would NEVER forget. Ron and Joanie were not only deeply in love, but they were the best of buddies. For much of their early married years, they traveled the world. Ron would say that Joanie “dragged him everywhere” but somehow, when they would return from their travels, they would have all these stories of “Oh yea, and then Ron did this ...” which usually ended with, “and everyone was hysterical laughing.” On May 31, 2000, Ron and Joanie welcomed their first-born son, Max David, into this world. From the very start, it was clear that Ron was born to be a father. Ron was a consummate teammate to Joanie, making sure she went to bed early to get her rest while he took the night shift with Max. Ron loved his son and loved being a father. Max provided Ron with so man “firsts” – from coaching little league to teaching a teenager how to drive. Ron lived for each moment and never missed a “first” for his son. On September 27, 2003, Sophia Rose was born and it was clear that another girl had stolen Ron’s heart. He was the perfect “girl dad” – doting but always ready to embolden and strengthen his daughter into an independent young lady. She was also his car ride rapping partner. He was so in love with his little “newstie.” On March 17, 2007, the luck of the Irish blessed the Cavallo household with the final piece to their puzzle: Luca Patrick. As the baby of the family, Ron and Luca had so much in common and were two peas in a pod. Whether it was building a computer from scratch or just working on cars together, it was clear Ron and Luca were one in the same. The saying goes: “charity begins at home”, and Ron’s love and devotion at home also extended out to his beloved community, Valhalla. Setting down roots on Bruce Lane, Ron’s charitable heart was immediately put into action and dedicated his life to be of service to the Valhalla Community. Besides volunteering his time as a little league and basketball coach, Ron was also a NYS Certified Interior Firefighter. For 6 years, Ron volunteered with the Valhalla Fire Department where he would answer and assist with fires, motor vehicle accidents and medical calls at all hours of the day and night, 7 days a week. In 2012, Ron was elected to the Valhalla School Board of Education where he would serve the community for the next ten years, recently as Vice President. As the Board has expressed, Ron was an instrumental member of the district’s safety and facilities committees, and the former liaison to the Valhalla Schools Foundation. He oversaw several districtwide capital improvement projects, including Viking Stadium, two elementary school playgrounds, and renovations to the VMHS science wing, auditorium and library. In addition to his accomplishments as a Board Member, Ron also received the Jenkins Gazola Award given by the Valhalla PTA which recognized his dedication and service to children. As if that was not enough, Ron steadfastly volunteered each Thanksgiving for the Westchester Food Bank and spearheaded many relief efforts, including a relief and recovery trip to Staten Island to help salvage homes impacted by Hurricane Sandy. Simply put, Ron was a compassionate servant to his community and a born leader. If you were to ask Ron, he would humbly say that all the good he did and all he achieved would not have been possible without his beloved wife and children who, in his own words, represent all he lived for his entire life. Ron was so much to so many people. He was the brother you never had, the son you never had, the friend you wished you had when you were a kid – the list goes on. Ron leaves behind a legacy that on paper speaks of a man who lived 2 lifetimes. An intellect, a comedian, a provider, a man of his word, a doer, a humble servant, a rapper (self proclaimed), the loudest fan in the stands, a devoted husband, father, brother, son, nephew, cousin, uncle and friend – an inspiration. Ron Cavallo epitomized what it is to live in service of others and truly was the life of this party called living. All who loved him are that much better for having known him.
Family and friends are invited to Pleasant Manor Funeral Home, Inc. 575 Columbus Avenue Thornwood, New York 10594 on Sunday, April 3, 2022 from 12:00 - 6:00 PM for visitation. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated for Ron at Holy Name of Jesus Church in Valhalla on Monday, April 4, 2022 at 10:00 AM. Ron will be laid to rest at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Hawthorne after the funeral mass.
In lieu of flowers, the family kindly asks that you please consider a donation in Ron's memory to either Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center or the foundation for Thymic Cancer Research, the links are provided below for your convenience
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Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
1275 York Avenue, New York NY 10065
Thymic Cancer Research