HOBOKEN, NJ — New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy eulogized Hoboken pizzeria owner Frank Volpe during his Monday coronavirus briefing, part of an attempt he makes at the briefings to talk about some of the names behind the numbers. As of Monday, more than 23,607 New Jersey residents have died from coronavirus.
Volpe, 42, a father of three, started two brick-oven pizzerias in Hoboken in the last 15 years. He passed away on March 30 after a difficult two-month battle with the virus. READ MORE: Hoboken Pizzeria Owner, 42, Passes Away After 2-Month COVID Fight
Murphy said Monday, “Frank was just 42 years old, and as you can see, he’s a pretty darn healthy looking guy. Frank was a member of one of the nation’s royal families of pizza, and he grew up learning to make pies at his family’s world famous and historic restaurant, Lombardi’s in SoHo. That lineage and apprenticeship spelled success for Frank as he stuck out to make his own name in pizza.”
He added, “As the pandemic took hold last spring, Frank was there turning out pies to help feed our frontline healthcare workers and first responders.”
He noted that the family has asked for help through their GoFundMe because Volpe did not have insurance.
“Because Frank had no health insurance, they [his family] have set up a GoFundMe page to help get them through this awful period in their lives,” he said. “Please help them out, folks.”
Tough Fight Involved Ventilator, Surgery
“They were together for 18 years,” he added of Frank and his wife Jocelyn. “He also leaves his three sons, Joey, Justin, and Jason. He’s also survived by his sister Carolyn.” The family lives in West Orange.
The GoFundMe explained, “On January 29th Frankie tested positive for COVID19. Two weeks later on February 8th he was rushed to the hospital with 104.6 fever and oxygen levels plummeting to the 60s. Upon arrival the medical staff had advised he had viral pneumonia due to the virus. This virus has no cure and therefore antibiotics were not helping….”
After several operations, being put on a ventilator, and undergoing a tracheotomy to help his breathing, Volpe was briefly conscious and following directions, according to a post from his family on March 21.
However, according to a post days later from his wife, things changed quickly. “He suddenly took a turn for the worse on Sunday, March 28th,” said a post. “He had been put on and taken off of a dialysis machine to assist his kidneys. However, his liver began to shut down. Two days later on March 30th, Frankie’s heart stopped and he left us here to walk with the angels above.”
His wife noted, “He will always be remembered as being an amazing father and husband, boss, business owner, brother, son, and friend.”
Volpe worked at the family business, Lombardi’s in SoHo, for 12 years before he started his own.
The website for both Napoli’s pizza locations in Hoboken can be found here.
Other Hoboken business news: Keep Masking Up, Some Hoboken Shops Say. Here’s Why.
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