A humble, self-reliant man who was rooted in loyalty

MELROSE — William R. Barbato, a longtime resident of Melrose, passed away peacefully surrounded by family on Friday, February 18, 2022 at Melrose-Wakefield Hospital, at age 90.

William was born in Everett on December 31, 1931, one of six children of the late Edward and Rose (Diplasido) Barbato. An Everett native, Bill graduated from Everett High School, Class of 1949, and received his Engineering Degree from Tufts University. He was married to Carole Lombardi of Chelsea on November 22, 1953, and enlisted in the US Army, serving as a Specialist-3 during the Korean War. Following his honorable discharge, Bill began working for the Boston Redevelopment Authority as a Civil Engineer. A man rooted in loyalty and stoic precision, he worked for the BRA for 51 years, finally retiring in his mid-eighties.

Born during the Great Depression, Bill was humble, self-reliant, and practical. He settled in Melrose with Carole, raised three children, and remained in the same home for the remainder of his life. He started each day with the same consistent routine, the Boston Globe, black coffee, and a blueberry muffin, for decades. He was strong minded, enjoyed a lively conversation, and was a longtime Boston sports fan, especially the Red Sox. He enjoyed dancing the jitterbug with Carole, traveling to Florida with family, and hosting family parties for Fourth of July and Christmas every year.

A proud Army veteran, Bill enjoyed the camaraderie of the Harold O. Young VFW Post #2394 in Melrose where he served as Post Commander and State Commander for several years. In his free time, he found joy in the game of golf, and played many rounds with friends at Mt. Hood Golf Course in Melrose.

With his simple needs in life, Bill was happy. He loved his grandchildren, ice cream especially Maple Walnut, a glass of wine, and crossword puzzles. Bill will be deeply missed, but his steady presence, integrity, and love for family will always be remembered.

Bill was the beloved husband of the late Carole L. (Lombardi) Barbato with whom he shared 68 years of marriage. Devoted father of Edward Barbato and his wife, Patricia, of Tewksbury; Laura Katsos and her husband, James, of Peabody and Gina McGinness of Seabrook, N.H. Dear brother of Mary Ricciardone, and the late Michael Barbato, Philip Barbato, Irene Fisher, and Catherine Giacchetto. Cherished grandfather of Brian Barbato, Katie Gonzalez, David Barbato, and Arndria and Sean McGinness. Loving great-grandfather of Cameron, Ellie, Leo, Mason, Penelope and Kaizer. Also survived by many nieces and nephews.

Relatives and friends were invited to gather during visiting hours at the Robinson Funeral Home, 809 Main St., Melrose on Wednesday, Feb. 23 from 9-11 a.m., followed by his funeral service at 11 a.m. Interment with military honors by the US Army in Puritan Lawn Memorial Park, Peabody. If you wish, contributions in Bill’s memory to the Chelsea Soldiers Home Recreation Dept., 91 Crest Ave., Chelsea MA 02150. For online tribute visit RobinsonFuneralHome.com.