Albert Elias Maroone left this world on February 17, 2021 to join his beloved wife Kit, resting peacefully in his Florida home with family by his side. He spent ninety-eight wonderful years on Earth raising a faithful family, growing a successful business, making life-long friendships, touching enumerable lives, and creating a legacy that will live on for generations. He was the embodiment of the American Dream, starting from the humblest of beginnings to build a prosperous automobile retailing business that provided the resources to fulfill his real aspiration in life, to help make the lives of everyone around him better.
Al, as he was more commonly known, was born in Niagara Falls, New York, to newly arrived Lebanese immigrants Elias and Tutla. While he was raised, along with his six siblings, in a relatively poor section of Buffalo and his family had modest means, his recollection of childhood focused much more on neighborhood friendships and the love in his family. He served in the Navy during World War II and, upon returning, went on to finish a degree from Buffalo State Teachers College. That is where he met the woman who would complete him, a beautiful and strong-willed farmer’s daughter from Rochester, Katherine Carroll.
After they were married, Al and Kit settled in Buffalo and had three children while Al searched for the right career. He found it in the automobile retailing business, and in 1955 he took the risk of a lifetime, borrowing from his father’s life savings, sister’s pension, and father-in-law’s re-mortgage to buy a small Ford dealership in Middleport, New York. Through relentless work and by building a great team with a focus on great customer care, the business grew in Buffalo and eventually into South Florida. His incredible success culminated in the sale of one of the most successful auto retailing groups in the country to Republic Industries in 1997.
In the early nineties, Al turned the reins of the family business over to his son Michael, while always staying involved. In the later decades of his life, he delighted in spending time with Kit, his children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren, many of whom lived close by in South Florida. He genuinely loved helping and mentoring those around him, whether through the support and wisdom he provided his family and friends, or through his generous contributions to individuals, charities, and the community. His principal cause was providing world-class health care to the community through his support of the Cleveland Clinic and other organizations. His tremendous support was crucial to the growth of the Cleveland Clinic in Florida and today its cancer treatment center in Weston bears his name. He enjoyed playing golf, watching sports, and spending time with his family. He happily supported the local South Florida sports teams, as well as his beloved Buffalo Bills, and later went on to be a part owner of the NHL’s Florida Panthers.
Al Maroone is survived by his three adoring children – Kathleen Maroone, Patricia Damoorgian (and husband, Dorian), and Michael Maroone (and wife, Monica) – seven grateful grandchildren – John Hoctor (and wife, Patricia), Katherine Hoctor, Jennifer Wilde (and husband, Chris), Matthew Maroone (and wife, Christina), Alexander Damoorgian (and wife, Lauren), Meredith Knowles (and husband, William), and Diana Damoorgian – and five blessed great-grandchildren – Nora Murad, Laila Murad, Liam Knowles, Beau Maroone, and Madeline Hoctor. Al is preceded by his dearly departed wife, Katherine “Kit” Carroll, who moved on to the next life in October of 2017, a month after celebrating their sixty-ninth wedding anniversary.
A private Mass with limited capacity due to COVID will be held on Friday, February 26th at St. Lucy Catholic Church in Highland Beach, Florida to celebrate Albert’s life.
Donations graciously accepted in Albert’s name for the Maroone Cancer Center at Cleveland Clinic Florida and for the Jack and Jill Center in Fort Lauderdale. Donations to the Maroone Cancer Center can be made online at giving.ccf.org/florida, or mailed to Cleveland Clinic Florida, Attn. Philanthropy Department, 2950 Cleveland Clinic Boulevard, Weston, FL 33324. Donations in Albert’s name to Jack and Jill can be made online at http://www.jackandjillcenter.org/almaroone/.
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