1948 – 2023
Henry Carmine Rossi, 74, of Howell, NJ, passed away on Wednesday, 11 January 2023, at home after a long battle with liver cancer and injuries sustained during the Vietnam War.
Henry was born December 4, 1948 to Carmine and Madeline Rossi of Jersey City. Shortly thereafter, the family settled in Bayonne where Henry spent his formative years. His love for baseball and the New York Yankees blossomed during his youth while playing for Little League and PAL teams.
While still a student Bayonne High School, he enlisted in the Marine Corps to fulfill his family legacy. Unbeknownst to Henry, his friend John Donovan enlisted around the same time. The two would meet again during the Vietnam War. Tragically, Henry was severely wounded by friendly fire and was airlifted to the Philippines. From there, he was transferred to Tripler Army Medical Center in Hawaii, where his father, Carmine, would remain with him for the three months of his recovery. While there, he developed a life-long friendship with another veteran, Dennis Begley.
Henry’s recovery was long and difficult as he suffered from mental stress and numerous surgeries. Despite these challenges, Henry never let these things become an obstacle to the life he wanted to live. He married his wife, Jodie, and spent 29 loving and fulfilling years at their home in Howell, NJ.
At the inception of the effort to build the New Jersey Vietnam Veterans Memorial during the late 1980’s, Henry became an integral part of the effort. After riding to Washington DC and taking the rubbings from the Memorial of the 1,560 New Jerseyans who died during the war, he carried those rubbings on his wheelchair and, with thirteen other Vietnam Veterans, wheeled and walked with them all the way back to Holmdel, NJ, the future home of the NJ Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Henry’s dedication to the well-being of his fellow Vietnam Veterans was the constant mission during his life, a warrior to the end.
He was adored by his family and friends and will truly be missed. Henry is survived by his loving wife, Jodie; his two beautiful daughters, Dawn Marie and her husband, Robert Harsch; Lisa Lynn and her husband, John Goworek; his sisters, Louise Giovinazzo, and Debra and her husband, Michael Moran; his grandchildren, Ashley and Connor Harsch; Kyle and Jade Goworek; nieces, nephews and countless friends. Henry is predeceased by his father, Carmine Rossi and mother, Madeline Rossi; his brother, Carmine; and brother-in-law Robert Giovinazzo.