Joseph Michael Fitzgerald, a custom home builder, died last Thursday of complications from pneumonia at Port St. Lucie Hospital in Jensen Beach, Fla. The former Amagansett resident was 83, and had been ill for three months.
After working as a carpenter, Mr. Fitzgerald started a contracting company that became one of the largest in Suffolk County in the 1960s. He was also part owner of seven Sports Plus bowling alleys on Long Island.
In 1957, he married the former Doris O'Connell, and the couple had four children. His wife died in 1998.
He enjoyed animals, particularly horses, playing tennis, water skiing, and being by the water.
Known to friends as Mike, he was born on March 20, 1936, in Bayside, Queens, to Joseph Fitzgerald and the former Veronica Dunn. He grew up there and graduated from Bayside High School.
He is survived by his longtime partner, Barbara Marchese, two sons, Kevin Fitzgerald of East Hampton and Michael Fitzgerald of Odessa, Fla., and two daughters, Linda Jensen of Mount Sinai and Joanne Esplin of New Hope, Pa. A brother, Steve Fitzgerald of Leavenworth, Kan., and three sisters, Dorothy Kammerer of East Northport, Patsy Loomis of Port Jefferson, and Margaret Tumilowicz of Riverhead, 10 grandchildren, and 21 nieces and nephews also survive.
The family will receive visitors tomorrow from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. at the Yardley and Pino Funeral Home in East Hampton. A funeral Mass will be said at Most Holy Trinity Catholic Church in East Hampton on Saturday at 10 a.m., with burial to follow at Most Holy Trinity Cemetery on Cedar Street.
Donations have been suggested to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center at giving.mskcc.org, with a designation for prostate cancer research.