Anthony (Tony) Roman’s earliest years took place during the Great Depression. He was born in Torrington, CT in 1920, the youngest of four siblings. When he talked about his childhood, he told his family that his father, Karl, labored at the Torrington Brass Mill and his Mother, Tafelia, took in boarders to support the family. At an early age, he learned the value of being frugal and his success in business can be directly attributed to his work ethic and ability to make prudent financial decisions. He was proud to be called a financial entrepreneur by his investment advisors.
Anthony Roman lived in Torrington for his entire 98 years. It is with great sadness that his family announce his passing on March 11, 2019. He died peacefully at Litchfield Woods Healthcare Center surrounded by those he loved. He leaves behind his daughter, Karen Roman Tindell Galpin, who watched over him daily with love and devotion and his beloved granddaughter Tia Galpin Green, her husband Mick and two great grandchildren, Garrett and Aurelia, of Thomaston. He will be forever remembered by his nieces and nephews who dearly adored him. Dick Roman and his wife, Joanne, who visited him every day with a cup of his favorite coffee and helped when he had difficulty with the activities of daily living. Also, Carol Roman Pfeffer and her husband Rene, Marie Roman Lamarre, Cecile Pugnier Rzepiejewski and her husband Joseph, and Barbara Miller. He will be sadly missed by great nieces and nephews, too many to mention, who were enthralled and inspired by the stories he told of his life.
Tony was predeceased by his greatest love, his wife, Gertrude Tindell Roman Blake and three older siblings, who watched over him throughout his early life; brother Joseph Roman, and sisters Anna Mae Roman Kosha Miller, and Elsie Cecilia Roman Pugnier.
He graduated from The Torrington State Trade School and was an avid musician. During high school he played banjo for The Berkshire Mountains Band. Over the years he formed his own band and played well into his 80s.
Anthony Roman never went where the path led. Instead he went where there was no path and left a trail. He resigned from his first job at Torrington Needle Company at age 22 years old to enlist in the Army. As a Sergeant of Company C 85th Chemical Mortar Battalion, he was sent to the Philippines and fought heroically during the invasion of Luzon. He is listed in the World War II Pacific Memorial in Washington D.C. A tattered worn scrapbook on his coffee table with original photos illustrate this intense phase of his life. The discipline and patriotism he learned in the military remained with him always. Never complaining, resilient, he always toughed things out.
After he was honorably discharged and returned from the war in 1945, he built and operated a tricot textile company in Bantam, Connecticut, which made luxurious lingerie and apparel. About ten years later he sold this highly successful business. In the summer of 1958, he became the first Toyota dealer in Connecticut by opening Bantam Motors, Inc., which was one of the first dealerships in the United States.
Used to working hard and in exceptionally good health, he purchased Art’s French Fry trailer in
his later years. If you visited the Connecticut State Fairs on any weekend during the Fall months from 1973 – 1995, you would find him peeling and frying potatoes for lines of repeat customers who appreciated his fresh tasty fries. Working at the local fairs brought him great joy and gave him the satisfaction of making more money to invest.
Throughout his adult life, he was an active member of the American Legion, the Lithuanian Club and the Sullivan Senior Center. Every Spring and Summer, he spent endless hours devoted to his gardening. Sharing his crops with everyone.
He will be remembered for many reasons. Each member of his family has a personal story to tell. But, for all of us, nothing can dim the light that radiated from him… he lives on in all of us who knew and loved him.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Disabled American Veterans P.O. Box 310909 Newington CT 06131-6612.
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