Peter M. Arato

December 9, 1938 - August 6, 2022

Peter M. Arato, 83, who resided in Lake Grove, Long Island, NY, for more than 50 years and lately in Cape Coral, FL, died at home on Saturday, August 6, 2022, after a short battle with cancer. To the end, he lived with the quiet dignity and fortitude that all who knew and loved “Big Peter” recognized at the core of his character.

Peter was born on December 9, 1938, in Brooklyn, NY, into the large and loving family of Francesco and Angelina D’Ambrosio Arato, emigrants from Padula, Italy. Like many families maintaining traditions and building lives in the United States, Peter and his 10 siblings (Angelina, Ralph, Margaret, Josephine, Teresa, Frances, Carmela, Michael, Lorenzo, and Antoinette) loved and protected one another as they navigated the challenge of humble beginnings in the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood. Home, family, and food sustained them through childhood and continued to nourish as the Arato family grew and prospered.

Young Peter was an exceptional athlete and, after an injury ended a budding career in the baseball minor leagues, he turned to the courts. Basketball propelled Peter through college and introduced life-long friends. Peter graduated from the University of Tulsa in 1966 and began a long career in the petroleum industry. He was, above all, his own man, and his entrepreneurial spirit drew him to various enterprises in sales and construction during a long career.

A shy man, nonetheless, Peter’s wide smile and infectious laugh often made him the life of the party, regaling friends and family with stories of his Brooklyn childhood and military service. Sports grew his circle of friends throughout his life: tennis friends from Harbor Hills Country Club certainly will remember Peter’s driving serve and the powerful gin & tonics he served up off court. The inner child fueled Peter’s passion for toys—including Matchbox cars and model trains—and his generosity to extended family, especially during the holidays. His children will never forget Peter’s talent for grilling steaks, tossing pizza, and his specialty: waffles & ice cream.

Peter was a member of St. Katharine Drexel Catholic Church in Cape Coral, as well as Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Catholic Church in Centereach, NY.

He is survived by his beloved wife of 57 years, Janet Scala Arato of Cape Coral; three children Jennifer Wealton (Scott) of Cape Coral, Christine Arato (Erik Kreusch) of New Oxford, PA, and Peter Arato (Amy) of Cranford, NJ; nine grandchildren: Stephen, Luke, Elizabeth “Scout”, Gabriel, Theodore, Katherine, Erin, Benjamin, and Caleb; and 19 nieces and nephews and their spouses and children.

Peter was preceded in death by his parents and siblings. His memory lives on in family.

In lieu of flowers, the Arato family requests contributions in memory of Peter M. Arato to Brooklyn Youth Sports Club (www.brooklynyouthsportsclub.org), whose mission to help youth in their pursuit of college education using basketball as the hook for academic engagement and character development mirrors Peter’s own chance at success and embodies his generosity of spirit.

A Funeral Mass will be held 11:00 AM Tuesday, September 27, 2022 at St. Katharine Drexel Catholic Church, 1922 SW 20th Ave., Cape Coral, FL 33991.

Mullins Memorial Funeral Home & Cremation Service, Cape Coral, is entrusted with final care.

Guestbook

  1. Daixa Kops Aug 11, 2022 at 11:26 am

    Always with smile on his face and his well hitting serve but don’t forget when playing golf at the Three Oaks with Dec , he hit his drive out of the place and hit a car, and the alarm went on. They disappeared from the tee immediately. Rest In Peace, my friend

  2. John & Mary Ann Sokolowski Aug 12, 2022 at 10:12 am

    May God embrace Peter into His Heavenly Kingdom and bring peace and comfort to his family and friends.

  3. Nancy Rocklage Aug 12, 2022 at 11:00 am

    Beloved Brother in Law ❤
    Rest in eternal peace forever.🙏

  4. Betty Waisanen Aug 26, 2022 at 1:12 pm

    Dear Janet…. So sorry for your loss. Peter was your life for all these years. I hope the memories that so many of us have will sustain you. Peter had a soft way about him, a gentle soul and a good sense of humor. I hope these last few years in Cape Coral have been happy ones for you both. Having your daughter nearby will keep you grounded. Nothing like having a daughter’s shoulder to lean on. ❤️

  5. Jennifer Wealton Aug 27, 2022 at 9:05 am

    Your quiet strength, magnetic smile, and devotion to our family will never be forgotten, Daddy. You will always be “the wind beneath my wings”. Until we see each other again 🕊✨

  6. Janet Arato Aug 27, 2022 at 2:59 pm

    Love of my life for 60 yrs…….forever and ever and even then! Wait for me.

  7. Janet Grandinetti. Aug 28, 2022 at 4:14 pm

    Sending our best love, prayers and gratitude for all the happy moments we shared with Peter and you, Janet, so long ago—never forgotten, always loved.
    💜U
    Janet and Nick

  8. Trish Aug 30, 2022 at 8:52 am

    Always a gentleman with a smile. I loved seeing you both come in for pedicures. May Peter in eternal peace ❤️

  9. John Alita Aug 30, 2022 at 10:42 pm

    I spent a lot of time with Peter and Janet when I was in my late teens as a friend of their daughter, Christine. On my own at a young age, and lacking good parental examples, Peter and Janet added me to the family immediately and provided me with a sense of stability that helped me through one of the toughest times of my life. Peter was a quiet man but his actions were enough. I was included in many holidays and family events and Peter always made me welcome. He showed me by his example, what a good father looks like. He always lit up around family and food, and if you have ever watched Jeopardy with the Aratos you know that you had to yell the answer and it better be in the form of a question! Thank you Peter for your kindness, humor, and care. I will miss you.

  10. Kathleen Aug 31, 2022 at 8:02 am

    Always loved our conversations ,especially when we talked politics!!!
    You will be missed.
    Prayers, love and strength for his family

  11. Janet Arato Sep 10, 2022 at 10:53 am

    Francesco (Frank) and Angelina Arato Family. The little boy in the arm uniform is Peter Arato

  12. Gertrude Ferragamo Spiegelman Sep 10, 2022 at 8:17 pm

    I will always remember Peter being a quiet giant. I met Peter way back in the day. When we were all young. Janet and I went to school together. Then Janet met the love of her life and I could see why. When you looked at my friends you could see and feel their love. Time and space will never change that. Rest in Jesus my dear friend.

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