Lorenzo Malanga

Obituary of Lorenzo Malanga

Lorenzo aka “Larry” Malanga left this earth on April 28, 2018. He was born on January 9, 1936 in Materdomini, Italy and met his love and future wife Antoinette Iannuzzi from the neighboring town of Caposele. They married and then immigrated to the United States where they initially settled in Newark, NJ near St. Lucy’s Church. They then moved to their first home in Montclair, NJ where they lived for the next 50 years raising their 3 children and becoming long-standing members of St. Cassian’s Church. Larry worked in Montclair as a barber for nearly 50 years where he purchased and owned his own barbershop. Larry’s Barber Shop became a well-known establishment in Montclair for decades. It was there that he cut the hair of thousands of men (and a few women) and many young boys-many of whom received their first haircuts from him hoping for their post-haircut reward of a gumball (or 2) and lollipop. Over time, many of these boys refused to get their haircuts from anyone else but Larry, even as they became fathers bringing in their own boys for their first haircuts. His ability to handle a squirming, crying child as well as being a receptive ear for the stories of his more mature clients was admired by all. He continued working at this barber shop into his late 70seven after selling it to help care for his wife. 

Lorenzo enjoyed many simple activities during his life: caring for his garden in his backyard; cooking meals for his family in the basement of his home; playing cards with his Italian friend at “The Club”; long walks along the boardwalk at Sea Girt; trips to Italy to visit his friends and family (as the well-beloved Zio Lorenzo) and working on his much admired tulip garden at the front yard of his home on Mt. Hebron Road. But his focus, along with Antoinette, was his family. They stressed the importance of education and through their guidance and sacrifice, they were able to send all 3 of their children through college (the first in both families) and postgraduate schools. This emphasis has been passed on to their grandchildren as well. Lorenzo and Antoinette represent the epitome of the American dream coming to the United States with very little but determination and the willingness to work hard; and ultimately learning a new language and culture; purchasing a home, starting a business and raising a family who become productive contributors to their communities.  

Beyond this, Lorenzo was faithful to his Catholic beliefs and teachings of Christ: first love of God, then love of neighbor. His legacy lives beyond his own life through the lives of his children and grandchildren who are continuing to follow in his faith. He has truly had a “Dolce Vita”. 

Lorenzo is now reunited with his love and wife, Antoinette, and will be dearly missed by his children: Gerry, Anthony and Rita; their spouses: Carrie, Patti and Dave and his many grandchildren: Matthew, Tara, Patrick, Kelly, Grace, Luke, Michael, Kyle, JohnEnzo, and Isabelle. 

In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Alzheimer’s Association (alz.org) or The Comboni Missionaries (combonimissionaries.org).