In Memory of




Obituary for Joseph F. Sylvia

Joseph (Joe) Fretard Sylvia, Jr.79, of Spring Street, Westerly, beloved husband of the late Patricia A. Bumb Sylvia (1944-1992) passed away at his home on Tuesday, November 3, 2020. Born in Westerly, he was the son of the late Stella Sylvia (1899-1989) and Joseph Fretard Sylvia (1894-1950). Joe was a devoted father to his son, Aaron Sylvia.

He was raised in Stonington Borough and attended the Stonington Public Schools. In 1959 he joined the US Navy where he served his tour of duty at the Naval Air Station in Pensacola, FL. After his military career he met the love of his life and was married to Patricia at St. Mary’s Church in Stonington on June 24, 1967.

For many years he worked as a commercial fisherman and lobsterman out of the Stonington Town Dock. After retiring from a fishing career on his lobstering boat named “Patricia”, he went on to work for many years at General Dynamics, Electric Boat in Groton, CT and spending his later work years at Foxwoods Casino until his final retirement in 2012.

A longtime resident of Westerly, Joe was well-known at both the Elks Lodge and the Bocce Club. He was an avid sports fan and for many years a Patriots season ticket holder enjoying football games with his son and family and friends at Foxboro and across the country. Joe loved his family and his family home on Bayview Avenue in Stonington. In his later years, one of his favorite places to be was at the family home with his son, nephews, nieces, and their large extended family.

Besides his son Aaron, he leaves his niece Sandra Nunes Maniscalco (Philip); his nephew Paul Nunes (Patricia); his niece Mary Nunes Maranell (Donald); his cousin Dorothy Starr Travers; his brother-in-law Leslie Bumb (Bonnie) Daytona Beach, FL; sister-in-law Mary Anne Blum (Michael) DeLand, FL; sister-in-law Karen Anderson (Robert) Astor; and sister-in-law Sandra Bumb, Daytona Beach, FL.

He was also predeceased by his sister Anna Sylvia Nunes; brother-in-law Alvord Nunes; his nephew Phillip Nunes; his brothers-in-law, Lawrence Bumb, Patrick Bumb and Thomas Bumb.

All services are private and will be held at the convenience of the family. Gaffney Dolan Funeral Home, 59 Spruce St., Westerly is in care of the arrangements. For online condolences please visit