John Sforza loved his work as a special education teacher. It wasn't work for him as it provided a wonderful sense of belonging, accomplishment and an ability to make the lives of his countless number of students better in both simple and great ways.
"To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived - that is to have succeeded" wrote Ralph Waldo Emerson and it accurately summarizes John's rewarding career as a teacher.
John E. Sforza was born in Boston's North End, a son of the late Enrico and Edith (Bergonzi) Sforza and was raised in Somerville. He was a graduate of Somerville High School with the class of 1967. He then earned his Bachelor's degree from Boston State College and Master's degree from Boston College.
He died Saturday, October 23, 2021 at Care Dimensions Hospice House in Lincoln after an illness. He was 72.
He married Marianne Hall on August 26, 1972 in Saint Luke's Church in Belmont and had been a resident of Waltham since 1978. Both he and Marianne were both educators and were fortunate to enjoy their summers and other great times at their home in West Yarmouth with their daughters, grandchildren, family and friends.
His teaching career began at the Perkins School for the Blind in Watertown where he worked over three years. And then for over thirty-two years he was a special education teacher at Maynard High School before retiring in 2009. Retirement afforded them time to travel extensively which they enjoyed. They travelled two times across the country with the destination being Portland, Oregon where their daughter and family live.
John loved all things orange and perhaps with no irony he died when the color is most vibrant here in New England. He was an avid New England sports enthusiast and member of the Knights of Columbus at Sacred Heart Church and former member of the Medford Knights of Columbus.
In addition to his wife of 49 years, he leaves his daughters, Amanda R. Smutok (Michael) of Whitinsville and Laura T. Hunker (Philip) of Portland, Oregon; his grandchildren, Annabel and Lillian 'Lily' Smutok and Michael and Henry Hunker; his brother-in-law, James Hall (Debra) of San Diego, California; his nieces, Jamie Hassell Hall, Julie White and Sara Huddleston, all of California.
John was also the brother of the late Robert Sforza.
Family and friends will honor and remember John's life by gathering for calling hours in The Joyce Funeral Home, 245 Main Street (Rte. 20), Waltham on Thursday, October 28th from 4 to 7 p.m. and again Friday morning at 9 a.m. before leaving in procession to Sacred Heart Church, 311 River Street, Waltham, where his Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Burial is private.
Memorials in his name may be made to the American Kidney Fund, www.KidneyFund.org