Richard J. “Richie” Saponari, 63, of Catawba Island and formerly of the Cleveland area, died Friday, April 11, at Stein Hospice Care Center, Sandusky, OH. He was born April 30, 1950, in Utica, NY, the son of Dominic and Helen (Radeschi) Saponari. He is survived by his wife, Maureen “Moe” (Gutowski) Saponari, whom he married on July 17, 2005.
Richie founded and operated Century Limousine of Berea, OH, in the 1970’s and early 1980’s. Richie and Maureen then started Dawg Pound Diners of North Royalton and Berea. In 2005, they moved to Catawba Island and founded Richie’s Limo.
Richie founded The Ohio Limousine Owner’s Association, which was instrumental in regulating limousine companies. After moving to Catawba Island, he created and founded Island Idol and Seniors Gone Wild. He was also the head of security for Mon Ami Restaurant and Winery.
Richie lived his life to the fullest every day of his 63 years. His love for his wife and family was insurmountable. His magnetic personality, compassion and generosity blessed many people throughout his life.
Surviving are his wife, Maureen “Moe” Saponari; sons, Anthony V. Gutowski of Cleveland, R. J. Saponari of North Royalton; daughter, Ashley A. Saponari of North Royalton; mother, Helen Saponari of Brookpark; brothers, Robert G. (Carol) Saponari of Brookpark, OH, and Larry (Lori) Saponari of Boca Raton, FL. He was preceded in death by his father, Dominic Saponari.
Visitation will be held Wednesday, April 16, from 1-4 p.m., at Neidecker, LeVeck & Crosser Funeral Home & Cremation Service, 1124 Fulton Street, Port Clinton, where a short prayer service will be held Wednesday at 4 p.m., followed by a “Celebration of Richie’s Life” at Mon Ami Restaurant and Winery, Catawba Island. Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.neideckerleveckcrosser.com.