Standardbred owner Frank Joseph Castelli, 88, who also served as president of the Meadows Standardbred Owners Association and together with his wife Susan owned part of top pacer Georgia Pacific, died Sept. 12 at Miner’s Medical Center in Pennsylvania.
Born July 4, 1925, in South Fork, he was the son of Anthony and Bianca (Bendinelli) Castelli. Castelli was most known for his Ford-Lincoln-Mercury dealership in Ebensburg, Pa., with automobile sales and leasing operations.
He was a three-time gubernatorial appointee to state committees and developed the Good Samaritan Nursing Care Center (now part of Conemaugh Hospital), Castel Manor Farm horse breeding facility and Castel Gate Nursery for Christmas Trees.
His love of horses, both Thoroughbred and Standardbred, led him to become president of The Meadows Racetrack, the Standardbred Owners Association chairman and member of the PA Breeders Fund/Sire Stakes Advisory Board and the Pennsylvania Live Horse Racing Council, representing all established PA racetracks and horse breeders.
He is survived by his wife, Susan; daughter, Mary Frances (Gerald) Bruck, daughter of the late Stella Lauder; granddaughter, Maribeth Makepeace; grandson, Eric Castelli (Carolyn) Toll; sister, Victoria Law; mother-in-law. Laura T. Philips; brother-in-law, Thomas W. Philips; sisters-in-law, Barbara (Ray) O’Connell, Margaret F. Reynolds (fiancé of John Sumrada) and Theresa; and numerous aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and godchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Thomas; sister, Adelaide LaMantia; and father-in-law, Roy E. Philips, Jr.
A public visitation will be held on Monday (Sept. 16) at the Askew-Houser Funeral Homes Inc., 300 North Julian Street, Ebensburg, from 2-8 p.m. His funeral will be private.
Memorial contributions may be directed to organizations benefitting children’s health programs, wounded military, food pantries and/or animal welfare.