Robert “Bob” Valli died May 30, at his home in New Hyde Park, after a three-year battle with brain cancer. He was 76. Valli was the consummate gentlemen, an accomplished businessman and enthusiastic volunteer. He will be remembered by family and friends as an avid golfer, fitness enthusiast, tri-athlete, sailor, and most of all a loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather and friend.
Bob was born in Brooklyn in 1937, and graduated from Brooklyn Technical High School in 1956. He received his BA from City College and his MBA with Distinction from New York University. He was a member of the DKE fraternity where he met many of his lifelong friends. Bob was a veteran of the United States Army and received the Soldier of the Cycle Award.
Starting his career at Chemical Bank in 1965, he moved to Standard & Poors, Inc. and eventually was promoted to assistant treasure of McGraw-Hill in 1970. Switching career paths in 1975, Bob ran for, and was elected to the office of Receiver of Taxes for the Town of North Hempstead. He held that office for 16 years, returning to the private sector in 1992 with State Bank of Long Island. Subsequently he was Vice President at HSBC, from where he retired in November of 2012.
As a strong advocate for community service, Bob, for the past 33 years, along with elected officials, bank employees, family and friends organized and participated in sing-a-long programs for countless organizations. With his trusty guitar, he entertained at various senior centers and veteran’s hospitals brightening the holiday season for those in need of a smile.
Bob was a longtime performer of the Herricks Community Players. He was also a member of the Cellini Lodge, Sons of Italy in America, New Hyde Park Council of the Knights of Columbus and the New Hyde Park Runners Club. He served on the board of the Suffolk County Girl Scouts and Our Lady of Consolation Foundation in West Islip. He initiated and funded the Valli Family Service Award which benefits a graduating senior at New Hyde Park Memorial High School.
If anyone needed help, whether he knew them or not, Bob was there. He was a truly special man. When they say they don’t make ‘em like they used to, they are talking about Bob. He is survived by his wife Barbara of 50 years, his children Robert Jr. and his wife Jill, Jennifer and her husband Peter, Christopher and his wife Molly, his five grandchildren, Robert III, Sophia, Pete, Ronan and Finn, his brothers Victor and Arthur along with nieces and nephews.