~~Michael Francis Passaro
May 8, 1944 – December 15, 2017
Mike was born on May 8, 1944 in Brooklyn, N.Y. He was the only child of Francis Michael and Sophie Burdzel Passaro. Second Lieutenant Francis Michael was killed in action before he’d met his son, in one of the last battles of World War II in France near the Rhine, for which he received the Silver Star for valor. Mike grew up on Long Island and in Western Pennsylvania; he spent his summers on the North Fork and gained a strong work ethic at his uncle’s Dodge Dealership there.
Michael graduated December 1965 from Penn State University where he was a loyal member of Theta Chi Fraternity. Mike’s mother passed away while he was in college.
Michael joined Xerox Corporation right out of college, where he soon discovered his passion for sales and motivating teams. He advanced rapidly, from serving law firms on Wall Street to eventually heading the company’s sales training school in Fort Lauderdale. He served in executive sales and marketing management positions at Western Union, ADP and Novell Inc., becoming particularly adept at building world-wide sales networks. Michael capped his career by joining several former IBM PC executives who formed Citrix Systems, again in Fort Lauderdale, where he helped take the company public; the founding group, including Mike, retired together in 1999 when Mike was age 55.
Michael had an amazing zest for living; “Work hard and play hard,” was definitely his motto. He loved travel, good food, reading, golf, dancing, and the beach. He was a world-class story-teller. He loved quoting “Casablanca,” Woody Allen, “The Godfather,” and others.
Michael’s true passion, however, was his family, starting with his love of Trisha and their two children, Christin and Michael. If you asked him about success, Michael would inevitably focus on his marriage of nearly 50 years and the happiness of his children; everything he did was for them.
Michael is survived by his wife Trisha, his daughter Christin, and his son Michael. He will now have a chance to meet his father.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Wednesday, December 20, 2017 at 11:15 am at St. Rose of Lima Church, 50 Short Hills Ave. Short Hills, NJ. Visiting hours Tuesday, 6 to 9 pm at the Bradley Brough & Dangler Funeral Home, 299 Morris Ave. Summit, NJ.