Christmas 01

James P. DiStefano Jr.

January 27, 1949 ~ December 8, 2023 (age 74) 74 Years Old

James DiStefano Jr. Obituary

James P. DiStefano, Jr., 74, of Watertown, New York, passed away on December 8, 2023, at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Syracuse, New York. 

He was born on January 27, 1949, in Watertown, son of James P. and Elizabeth M. (Messina) DiStefano. James graduated from IHA in 1967 and attended Jefferson Community College. His career path led him through various local jobs and a seven-year tenure as a salesman with Prudential Life Insurance Company. Alongside his brothers, John and Anthony, he owned and operated DiStefano Gardens in Watertown, later selling it in 1993. Subsequently, he acquired and managed Casey’s Market on West Main Street, specializing in seasonal plants and Christmas trees, as well as sandwiches including “The Kong”. He ran Casey’s Market for seven years before retiring. 

On October 9, 1971, James married Janet E. Clemons at St. Anthony’s Church. They resided in Watertown and enjoyed winters in Myrtle Beach. They also resided in Long Island for five years to support their daughter in caring for her children. 

James was a life member of Watertown Elks No. 496, the Italian American Club (where he served as past president), and Ives Hill Country Club. An avid golfer, he had a passion for buying and selling used items, particularly used cars. He also enjoyed making and selling golf clubs.

He is survived by his wife, Janet E. DiStefano, and daughter Katey C. DiStefano of Long Island, along with grandchildren Olivia and James; a sister and brother-in-law Carol A. and John P. Pecori, brothers and their wives Gene A. and Carolyn DiStefano, Sr., Anthony J. and Betty DiStefano, of Myrtle Beach, SC; sister-in-law and husband Cynthia M. DiStefano-Warner and Richard, N Las Vegas, NV and brother and sister-in-law Lyle and Jolie Penistan; as well as many cousins, nieces and nephews. 

He was predeceased by his son, J.P. DiStefano III, brother John J. DiStefano, Sr., sisters Bernadette M. Zilnik and Mary A. DiStefano, and nephew Gene DiStefano, Jr. 

Calling hours will be on Monday, December 11th from 4 to 7 p.m. at Hart and Bruce Funeral Home.

A funeral mass will be said on Tuesday, December 12th at 10:30 a.m. at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, with Father Michael Gaffney officiating. 

Burial will follow in Brookside Cemetery. 

Donations in his memory may be made to the DiStefano Memorial Fund, care of Watertown Savings Bank. 

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Hart & Bruce Funeral Home
117 N. Massey Street
Watertown, NY 13601

St. Patrick's Catholic Church

Watertown, NY 13601


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