Robert R. LaVella, 82, of Irwin, died peacefully Friday, Nov. 29, 2019, in Hempfield Manor, Greensburg, surrounded by his family. He was born June 23, 1937, in Greensburg, and was a son of the late Anthony and Frances (Cividini) LaVella. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his sister, Janet Buncie. Bob had worked 15 years with his father at Penn State Tool and Die Corp. in Irwin until 1971, when he and his wife Irene opened Fun Services/Fun Party stores until his retirement in 2014. A lifelong musician, Bob had played music with his uncles and his own band, "Bobby LaVella Quartet," along with national acts for many years. He loved listening to polkas on the radio and going to the SNPJ picnic grounds to listen to various groups. He also loved telling jokes and was a people person at heart; spending time with his grandchildren was always a special day. Bob is survived by his loving wife of 59 years, Irene (Ometz) LaVella; two daughters, Susan (Dennis) Martin, of Irwin, and Toni (Robert) Orner, of Greensburg; his son, Robert A. (Cinda) LaVella, of Greensburg; seven special grandchildren, Sara, Zachary, Gregory, Anthony, Marissa, Rachel and Erika; two sisters, Joan E. Wilhelm, of Greensburg, and Antoinette (Sam) Smith, of Irwin; and several nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews. Bob's sense of humor, smile and love for his family will forever be remembered. He will be dearly missed by his family, friends and many customers near and far. The family would like to thank Bob's two caregivers, Lizzie and Suzanne, Three Rivers Hospice and the staff at Hempfield Manor for all their love and compassionate care. Friends will be received from 3 to 8 p.m. Monday at JOSEPH W. NICKELS FUNERAL HOME INC., 404 Sewickley Ave., Herminie, PA 15637, 724-446-7251. Additional visitation will be held from 9 to 11 a.m. Tuesday, at which time a funeral service will be held in the funeral home. Private entombment will follow in Westmoreland County Memorial Park. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Make-a-Wish Foundation, 1702 E. Highland Ave., Suite 400, Phoenix, AZ 85016, in memory of Bob. To send online condolences, please visit www.nickelsfuneralhomeinc.com.
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1702 E. Highland Ave. Suite 400, Phoenix AZ 85016