Salvatore Rutigliano

Salvatore Rutigliano, 80, of Norwood, NJ, passed away on Saturday, May 6, 2023. Beloved father of Tommy and his partner Chiaki Takada, Dennis and his wife Melanie, Michael and his wife Laurie and Kathy and her partner John Zhupani. Also survived by Patricia Rutigliano. Adored grandfather of Ken, Justin, Caroline, Matthew and Timmy. Dearest brother of Rita, Rose, Angela, Emelia, Florence, and the late Marie, Clara, Paul and John. He is also survived by many loving nieces, nephews, family and cherished friends.

Sal was a true entrepreneur and was successful in many of his ventures. To all that knew him, Sal embraced life to the fullest. He participated with many friends playing ice hockey and skiing well into his seventies! Truly a rare breed, his energy boundless, Sal travelled the world on family trips, playing hockey, skiing and embracing the culture of the many countries he visited. He also enjoyed photography and was an avid car enthusiast.

A Norwood resident for over 50 years, he served his community as a volunteer fireman, on the Norwood Public School Board and for many years coached baseball and soccer for his children and many of their friends. His yard a canvas, Sal created a magnificent pallet of color and texture from the many rare species of plants, trees, and flowers he procured from around the country. Sal rocked the garden! Generous in spirit, he imparted his wisdom and knowledge both as a mentor and fellow enthusiast. He will be truly missed by all who knew him.

Visiting hours are Thursday, May 11, 2023 from 4-8 PM at Pizzi Funeral Home, 120 Paris Ave, Northvale, NJ.

Family and friends will gather at the funeral home on Friday, May 12, 2023 at 10 AM and then go in procession to Immaculate Conception RC Church, Norwood, where a funeral mass will be celebrated at 11 AM.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Sal’s memory may be made to Fort Lee PBA Local 245, PO Box 1073, Fort Lee, NJ 07024


  1. Sal was a very kind person in many ways. The rare Japanese tree he helped me pick and planted will cherish my garden will remind me of his kindness forever!
    You will be missed dearly Sal!

  2. Kristine Steele

    To the entire Rutigliano Family
    No words to convey condolences. A true staple of a man. A dad. A Norwood giant. Incredible memories from years past and finding my incredible best friend Kathy . Dinners. Car rides. Laughter. Parties. I remember it all. You will be forever remembered and my heartfelt sympathies to the entire family. Much love

  3. Please Accept My Condolences

    May Sal Rest In Peace And May Perpetual Light Shine Upon Him …

  4. Emelia DeSena

    There is so much I can say about my brother Sal, from his teenage years preparing for a weight lifting meet, to learning how to ice skate and ski, he did everything with 100% enthusiasm and effort. His love of plants and creation of such a wonderful garden was a surprise to me, until I realized it was just a part of his love of art. He was a man of intelligence and generosity, especially with his time. He will be missed.

  5. Linda parsells

    Sal so many people will miss you you were a generous soul you helped me so much in my life your energy was boundless i thank God I had the pleasure of knowing and serving you thank you❤️❤️❤️

  6. Judy Libonati

    My condolences to the whole RUTIGLIANO family for the loss of Sal. Over the many years I lived in Norwood Sal was one of the people Rich and I first met. We shared many good times, vacations, parties etc.
    Rest In Peace !

  7. To The Rutigliano family,
    I am deeply saddened to hear the loss of the great man.
    Sal was a generous, kind, down to earth human being with beautiful soul. I feel very lucky got the pleasure to meet him in my life time.
    My heart and prayers go out to you all at this most difficult time.
    Sal will be the shiniest star shinning down on you.

  8. To all of Sals family
    Please know that all of us at Audi of Mendham /Audi of Bridgewater send his family out true
    Wish of all of us with sympathy
    He was a very supportive and generous Man
    also a pretty good golfer!
    We were all better off in life to have know Sal and worked for him

    One of a kind Man!

  9. I have started trying to write something many times, only to delete and start again. Bottom line is there are no words that will truly suffice, but I will try.
    Sal’s being, his essence, is larger than words. His effect was, I believe, deep and encompassing to all who knew him, as he lived his life to make it so. Sal gave 110% to everything and everyone. Truly one of the most wonderful human beings I have ever known. Kindness, an eye for the beauty in life, playful and intelligent. CARING. I am truly better for having experienced you and your light. It was always so, yet time added clarity and depth.
    I will share a funny anecdote. We once went on a bike ride. Sal borrowed a bike from Tommy. He said, “Check out this bike! This is a good bike!” I forget what the brand was, but he was on about it. As we were riding down a steep hill, Sal passes me, going fast, and playfully says, “See this bike goes fast. That’s the quality of the bike!” Later in the same ride, we were going up a hill. I passed him and playfully said, “See this bike goes fast. That’s the quality of the rider!” Sal looked up with his raised eyebrows, open mouth Sal look of surprise, and said, “Cherr-yll, That was a good one!” I will also never forget the time you tried step aerobics, classic! Yet another funny anecdote that comes first to mind is better suited to another forum, but I’ll say sometimes embarrassment in the moment is also classicly funny.
    Sal, your humor, cleverness, playfulness, compassion, being comfortable in your own skin, so many things that are you. Yes, these words do not suffice. Illness often masked those traits recently, but allowed your perseverance and steadfastness to shine. I am sorry to lose your light in this world where it is so very needed for us all, but let us not lose you or your impact. You will live within me, within all of us. Volver, Volver. The world is dimmer now. Ever Grateful for you.
    May your legacy be that we all are able to embody some of your light. To be caring and kind, see the beauty around us, be open to others, and adventures of all kinds.
    One can never say I love you early or often enough. My sincerest heartfelt condolences to all as all are suffering the deepest loss of an irreplaceable human being, the most human a human can get. Hey Sal, “I’m over here now!” Until, I pray, we meet again.

  10. Meredith Tierno Budinich

    Endless memories with the Rutigliano family as a former resident of Norwood. Fond memories of Sal. He loved his plants and trees and I remember his epic garden. His was kind to me and helped me on many an occasion. Rest in peace, as we called him, Mr. Rutig!!!!

  11. Gina (Leocata) Hennessey

    So sorry to hear this! Thoughts and prayers to all of you.

  12. Julie and Steve Murphy

    Will be remembered for his love and light! An amazing skier and listener. Steve and I were lucky to steal private time with him amid the ski trip to really get to know him. What a man! He will be truly missed. Our sincere condolences Xxoo

  13. Cindy Humphrey

    Sal was such a fun, social, kind, generous man. He energized a room when he entered! I am lucky to have been on so many ski club trips around the world with Sal – and to so many social events too. He will be greatly missed by so many. Sincere condolences to Sal’s family and many friends.

  14. To my favorite babysitting family! My thoughts and prayers are with you all!
    your dad was a fun,kind man who really enjoyed life and loved you all so much! Judy

  15. Sal was a unique personality. You don’t get to meet many in a lifetime. Sal was magnetic; people were attracted to him. He had the amazing quality of making everyone he came in contact with feel good. This was one of his gifts, and he was generous with it. Sal was always upbeat, positive and ready to have a good time. He had an incredible amount of energy; played hockey, worked out, skied, ran businesses. I was fortunate enough to have played hockey with him for years, travel out west to ski, and hang out as friends. I considered him a true friend, a personal hero and role model. I will miss him terribly.

  16. Hi Friends.
    Sal traveled to Johnstown almost every year for the past14 years to play Ice Hockey in the Slapshot Cup Hockey Tournament. Sal was a very good hockey player and as a member of the Teaman Team out of NY. NY Sal got to raise the Slapshot Cup numerous times. Off the ice Sal made made many friends and connections . His warmth , kindness. generosity and love always came through. As a way to keep Sals memory and legacy alive Josh and Dave Piro the Tournament directors have decided to attach Sals name to the tourneys MVP award. So from this day forward the award will now be the Sal Rutiglioni MVP.
    On behalf of David and Josh Piro we offer sincere thoughts , condolences and love to Sals family and friends. .God Bless you all.

    • Sal Rutigliano MVP (last name typo / fat fingered). What a beautiful tribute to a great man you have planned. Love.

  17. I always enjoyed my time playing hockey with sal As I got to know him I felt how can you not love this man always smiling kind compassionate . He lived life the way life should be lived. He enjoyed every moment Sal also loved his family, always talking about them. Sal also loved his hockey family, this was evident by the amount of time that he spent traveling with his teammates. We will miss him.

  18. A truly respectfull individual. I will miss Sal and our conversations of his world travels and his experience all over. May God Bless him for ever lasting peace. I admired him.

  19. Jon and Jane Lawson

    We send our sincere sympathy and prayers to all of Sal’s family. We have many fond memories of Sal and time spent with such an energetic and generous person.

  20. Sal. i’m so glad i met you in my life. I don’t have a father But you thought me a lot of knowledge as friend and as like a father Wish I had a father like you. You’re such a strong man and sweet person. Everyone truly loves you. I’ll marry someone like you and make a happy family:) May Rest In Peace. I’ll always loves you Sal.

  21. Laura Herdling

    So sorry for your loss! He was such a great man and full of life!
    Prayers to you all!!

  22. Josephine Dell'olio Lucas

    I am deeply saddened by Sal’s passing. He was truly an amazing and incredible person. The world will not be the same without him. I so relish the great times and memories of our childhood in Brooklyn. Although Sal and I had not seen each other for many years, I was blessed to reconnect with him at a family reunion. For this I am so grateful. My heart goes out to the Rutigliano Family. Much love, Cousin Jo

  23. I just found out, yesterday, Sal passed on. I am so sorry and sad…I would have been there with the family if I knew. I hope Sal felt how much love he was surrounded by. I knew Sal since I was little girl. He was an incredible, funny person. I always enjoyed being with him and the family…I always felt like family… I know he’s been ill, and I pray he is RIP…My love and sympathy go out to his children, grandchildren, family and friends….Sal, I will never forget you and will always keep you close to my heart…

  24. It is now Sept 25th and I still expect to hear the phone ring, esp. as Hockey is about to start this season. No amount of words can ever be ample or adequate to describe the greatest friend and brother from another mother, Sal was to me for 50 yrs. We did it all and no other two people ever lived as well as we did travelling the world, playing hockey and making relations so many souls. Sal tapped into several fields of energy unlike most, except me. Which is why we probably were partners in crime, lol. Sal touched EVERYONE he met with uplifting positive energy. He was magic. Everyone would come away feeling good about themselves and realizing Sal had touched their hearts. No one ever had a bad word to say about him. He was ineffably munificent on many levels. He was a gift to all. Someone told me that He and I were more popular than Tom and Jerry or Dino n Jerry. ha ha ha. The memories are innumerable and countless. The love we shared was always replete with RESPECT and APPRECCIATION and an example for others who witnessed it. To say that I miss him is a colossal understatement. He was my right arm. We laughed an ocean of amusement through our lives. His passion for life was contagious. But, he suffered enough and didn’t complain much about it either. It was tough to watch. I knew when his Rangers lost in the playoffs that he was ready to leave us and I didn’t want to be selfish and try to keep him from his path. He had fought so hard and I doubt many could have. He was so strong. I still hear him in my head, saying, “Yo, Ger, what are doing”? Truth is, we did it ALL. I feel so BLESSED to have had such a brother in this life for so long. if you met Sal, then you were blessed too. Thanks Bro. Love you forever.

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