Anthony E. "Sonny" Rainone, 92, of Waterbury, passed away peacefully on March 6, 2018 at Autumn Lake Health Care at Bucks Hill. He was the loving husband of Vivian (Daigle) Rainone for over 64 years.
Sonny was born, on September 20, 1925, in Waterbury, son of Stephen and Mary (Marrone) Rainone, Italian immigrants. He and his family struggled through the Great Depression. While attending Leavenworth High School, he played Left End for the 1942 All City Football Team. He survived the Invasion of Normandy in WWII, where he served in the Navy on the LST 983. At the age of 25, he met the love of his life, Vivian, the farmer's daughter. He worked two jobs, J.E. Smith's Hardware and Lumber and Waterbury Fire Department and never complained about it. During his 37 years as a firefighter, he fought countless fires and saved numerous lives. Always a hero, while on his honeymoon at the Cape, he swam out to rescue a little boy on a raft in rough water. During the Waterbury flood of 1955 he was missing and presumed dead after his boat tipped over during, one of many rescue missions. He was also a lifetime member of the YMCA, where he played handball and worked out. On his way home he would frequent, The Wacky or Howard's for an occasional beer. He loved going to the beach, whether it was Hammonasset, Maine, Rhode Island or Cape Cod. He always enjoyed being with family and he would say, "It was a pleasure being with you". Sonny was a legend to his family and friends; son, brother, husband, father, grandfather, uncle, father in law and friend to all who knew him. In the end, at 92, he said, "I had a good life, a great run and no one lived forever, yet."
Sonny is survived by his children; Paul (Jean) Rainone of Oakville, Linda (Joseph) Atkins of Waterbury, Nancy Hutt of Thomaston, and Stephen (Debra) Rainone of Wolcott; six grandchildren Todd Atkins, Dana (Nick) Pietruszkiewicz, Ryan (Stephanie) Rainone, Nevin Rainone, Justin Rainone, and Benjamin Hutt; along with several nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was predeceased by one brother and four sisters.
All services are private and at the convenience of the family.
Memorial contributions may be made in Sonny's name to Greater Waterbury YMCA 136 W. Main St. Waterbury, CT 06702